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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on May 13, 2011 11:50 AM. The previous post in this blog was Arrests in Lloyd Center shooting. The next post in this blog is A dubious distinction for Oregon. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Friday, May 13, 2011

Save the planet! Build a seven-story office building.

Even the kids at the Merc seem to be getting it: The Oregon Sustainability Center is a waste of money, its tenants will be government or government-subsidized, and building the thing at all is the opposite of "green."

Comments (12)

What happens when a 21-story condo gets slapped in there next to it blocking all of those expensive looking solar panels?

They should call it the Bear Grylls Building because the tenants will be drinking their own urine.

Instead of "from forest to faucet" the motto will be "from toilet to tap."

This city is on a mad spending and building spree at an insane time with little regard for its own citizens and I keep asking myself, how do they plan to keep financing this stuff when the residents are being nickel and dimed out of town? (I also wonder if that's not the intent, but that's another question).

So, where's the collateral?

And then I remembered the 2005 US Supreme Court ruling "Kelo v. City of New London", that grants cities eminent domain rights to sieze private realty like your house or your whole neighborhood, even if thriving and unblighted, to resell to private developers as long as the redevelopment "is for the good of the people".

Now, our regional governments already have their Really Big Redevlopment Plan that's supposedly "for the good of the people", and I wondered, are they leveraging (as yet) eminent domain siezures and keeping quiet about it for the moment?

Given the Portland/Metro/PDC monster's penchant for declaring every corner of this absurdly popular city "blight in need of redevelopment", why on earth would anyone risk relocating to or purchasing any kind of property here, residential or industrial?

Apparently, Oregon's Measure 37 is no protection...
http://www.law.uoregon.edu/news/article/131

http://homebuying.about.com/gi/dynamic/offsite.htm?zi=1/XJ&sdn=homebuying&zu=http%3A%2F%2Frealtytimes.com%2Frtcpages%2F20050627_homeseizure.htm

Why not? Solopower is forgoing an existing, ready-to-use warehouse in Wilsonville for a brand new structure on undeveloped land.

Go Green! Build!

I find the rationale for building this thing quite elusive. Seems to be, "We must build it to be the global center for "sustainable" design and building." And being the global center for "sustainable" design and building will be good for Portland because...? The "New Green Economy" will then flock here and bring all sorts or prosperity and goodness with it? Is that sort of (pipe)dream really worth investing $60M+ of public money?

Remember, we needed to build SoWa for the inrush of bio-science industries and jobs, at least that's the rationale we were sold 10 years ago. Didn't happen and the taxpayer is on the hook for it. Neat, huh?

Given the rate we're being asked to build painfully expensive, shiny tall buildings and nifty train sets, eventually we'll look like Fritz Lang's "Metropolis".

No vacant buildings available?

Can't refurbish existing properties?

Isn't the ultimate in sustainability reusing what we already have?

Yes, the city leadership is mad.

"building the thing at all is the opposite of "green."

Yes, but its iconic.

Sammy, how about this - Every city office has the thermostat locked at 60 (heat) and 80 (A/C)? You'd be incredibly green and save us a lot of money.

PDX gets more idiotic by the minute. As noted by everyone else here, the schools are falling apart, potholes are rampant, there are empty buildings everywhere and yet they still want to go ahead and build this. I'd say 'unbelievable' but it's actually quite believable.

This city is on a mad spending and building spree at an insane time with little regard for its own citizens and I keep asking myself, how do they plan to keep financing this stuff when the residents are being nickel and dimed out of town? (I also wonder if that's not the intent, but that's another question).

Either that or like I mentioned awhile back, it seems like towards the end of the Gold Rush Days, taking while they can, whatever they can, until nothing left to get, then leaving the mess and debris for those who are left. That is if anyone is left. Seems to me people are trying to get out while they can, but it is getting harder and as some have written, taking a real loss. What about the rest who have already been nickel and dimed and will have to stay with the potholes and eventually moved into the "new subsidized cells?" The newcomers will like that, all to save the planet, right?

So, where's the collateral?

Good question.
If it is our neighborhoods to be razed down for redevelopment, we might as well put an ad in NY Times for all developers to come to "The City That Works" - our neighborhoods are now "blight with potholes" and as some were peppered with ghetto style housing, they will now "look ready" for redevelopment!

What a Plan!

1. Create the blight
2. Redevelopment
3. Loss for residents, profit for others.

Like I've said repeatedly, the building is a sham, and has been promoted for economic reasons, not ecologic ones.

But more to the point: The Center has been touted as meeting the Living Building Challenge, which a large group (including myself) consider ridiculous--and proof that the LBC is just another way to justify office buildings.

But you know what? I'm glad it's being built, because it epitomizes what's shamefully wrong with the farcical "green" claims of local government and the journalistic handjobs that the city receives over such efforts.


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Road Work

Miles run year to date: 125
At this date last year: 173
Total run in 2015: 271
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In 2013: 257
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In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
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