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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on September 16, 2011 8:49 AM. The previous post in this blog was Building on sand. The next post in this blog is Portland car hater agenda: Sunday Parkways every day. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



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Friday, September 16, 2011

Speaking of paving paradise...

Last evening's photo of the doomed trees on SW Lincoln Street in Portland prompted a reader to send us a couple of other disheartening pics, taken last weekend at Willamette Park, down along the river below John's Landing. The reader writes:

Saw your article on the trees going to come down. At Willamette Park this weekend, I saw a number of trees cut down. They also appeared to totally tractor through what was a pretty nice natural area. No idea why.

We suspect the butchery in the park has to do with the hideous pumping station that the water bureau (motto: "Morgen die Welt") is building on park grounds. But who knows? Maybe the wonderful "future" of the park, brought to you by the real estate development firm known as Portland State University, has already arrived. We'll bet someone out there can fill us in for sure on what the carnage is about.

Comments (16)

Forget timber rapists... looks like we have tree murders right here in river city

Hopefully it's an indication that the city's finally doing something about the raw sewage that gets pumped into the river near the boat ramp. About thirty feet from the site of the second picture there's a pipe from that discharges raw sewage during heavy rains.

It could be part of the project referred to in from this Portland Tribune article from June.

I doubt it. By all appearances, (you know, "if it quacks like a duck..."), they'd rather redirect revenues to pet and developer oriented projects and just pay the EPA fine.

Good Point!
Have noticed throughout the years, people have been active to save Rainforests in South America, and so forth, yet in our own backyard.....
do they think it can't happen here?
do they not notice problems right before their eyes? or is the preferred education and/or action to look elsewhere?

...Or is this the case, that people give money to environmental organizations then think they have done their duty to the cause - however, that is another story.
Where are these local environmental organizations?

I've had a long association with this park of over 45 years, almost from the time it was completely filled in from essentially SW Macadam to its present banks. If people only knew the history. If you want the "natural" it was far less in vegetation and trees than it it is today.

I have a different bent on this issue. Amanda Jacobson was the longtime Park Committee Chairperson for the Neighborhood Assn. She would roll over in her crypt if she knew how her baby has turned into an eyesore.

CTLH always advocated for a "user park" for all, and not just a "natural" park. Our only water access Willamette Riverfront park has changed into a park with a river bank full of brambles, blackberries, undergrowth, cottonwoods and other trees mostly obstructing views to the river.

Portland's only boat ramp park has almost totally filled in with mud so that the docks are almost unusable, especially at low tides in the summer. The floating ramps and docks are angled at a steep slope when the river goes down in the summer where they are a dangerous and a liability for the city. The wooden docks are a mess with missing planks, tie-up cleats. The bathrooms are a mess. The drainage of the open spaces leaves lakes and makes the playing fields unusable. Lawns are mowed infrequently and garbage cans usually full. But the park has paid parking which the funds were all to go to fix the above...but the money goes elsewhere, contrary to the Agreement that CTLH allowed the park to be used as a paid parking lot.

I like trees, but this is a city riverfront park. I remember fondly of all the times we've enjoyed Oaks Park Fireworks, the views of passing boats, the fishermen, sailors, kayakers. But this so-called "natural" to the extent it has become, and more to come if left to propagate is too much. Let's have a riverfront park we can use with views. Even the benches along the walking trail facing the river look right into thick vegetation 20 ft away, with no view. If you want nature, go to Forest Park or parts of Washington Park. At least trim up the trees, shrubs, especially to view height, cut the brambles, and let us see.

Are those surf boards in that first picture?

Also, looks like Cascade Policy is making a full court press on this light rail thing...

We've previously blogged about that. Cascade Policy is not really interested in trees -- they just hate transit. If ODOT were clearcutting for a freeway expansion, you wouldn't hear a peep out of them.

At least trees are renewable.

It sounds like the parks bureau is neglecting the park.
After we pass parks bonds, there is no excuse for messy or closed bathrooms.
Where does the money go?
I am tired of seeing these ubiquitous porta potties in our parks, suspect that we could have better restrooms if we hadn't had so many pet projects around the city.
Parks charges to rent out park spaces for picnics, etc. and there are music events, for heavens sakes get some decent clean restrooms.

According to PortlandMaps there are two separate projects by the Bureau of Environmental Services taking place at the north end of the park near the boat ramp.

Project # E10153

"Retrofit existing road, curbs, inlets and depressed swale area to better handle stormwater runoff from western half of the Willamette Park parking lot at the boat ramp. The objective is to better control, and treat stormwater from the parking lot before it gets to the inlet and drains to the Willamette River."

Project # E10154

"Project aims to improve water quality pretreatment of stormwater before it enters the Willamette River. The project will retrofit a vegetated bioswale that was constructed approximately 10 years ago."

Pragmatic Portlander, if you research about 12 years ago the Willamette Park improvement projects you'll see Parks spent many thousands to improve this same area just north of the boat ramps with extensive piping, grading of parking lot to direct surface runoff into an new,extensive bio-swale with all new landscaping, etc. If I remember right it was over $100 thousand. Now they are doing it again after removing all the new growth, butterfly bushes , trees. etc. Doesn't make sense. Why wasn't it done correctly the first time, if that's the real reason? Maybe it's part of the Stimulus Package? Or Sam's Job's Program?

clinamen - the porta potties mean government pork for the companies that provide them aka another source of campaign funds for the dou#&bags that run the city.

After we pass parks bonds, there is no excuse for messy or closed bathrooms.

Not entirely so - the restrooms at Hayhurst were closed some years ago due to extensive vandalism.

Though I live in the neighborhood, I'm no longer a regular visitor to this park (nor any other portland park for that matter), but I did notice this tear-up when heading out for a full moon paddle on the willy river the other night.

I used to visit WP regularly as part of the running loop. I remember when the same area was torn up, and is it really any surprise that a project has to be redone a mere 10 years later.

I've had other long standing issues with the way the city runs this park. Being the only park in the neighborhood, if we wanted to visit the park during the summer, and had reason to take a vehicle, we had to pony up an entrance fee. Meanwhile, the local businesses along Macadam could use it as a free parking lot or park-and-ride as long as they arrived before the entrance kiosk was staffed. There would be well over 100 vehicles parked at the west end of the lot. I've watched people park, then walk straight out of the park many times. Meanwhile, there would be a couple boat trailers near the ramps, and not a soul in the park itself.

As far as I remember, the parking lot was even posted for "parking lot for park users only", but it was never enforced. It burned me every time the city asked for money for parks, and I'd see my local park used for a park and ride for non-park users.

What else is our local park being used for?

...Now they are doing it again after removing all the new growth, butterfly bushes , trees. etc. Doesn't make sense. Why wasn't it done correctly the first time, if that's the real reason?..

When things don't make sense, I think a much deeper look here is warranted, isn't the water bureau doing some building in that park? Often what the city does is for other reasons! Pointing to one thing while they have huge other plans behind the curtain.

Why would I think this? I think many of us are on to their "mode of operation!"
Try getting public information documents, becoming more difficult for citizens, why?

Also think that the alliance between Leonard and Fish needs to be watched here, Fish most likely will go along with anything the water bureau may be doing down there.


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