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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on November 16, 2011 3:55 PM. The previous post in this blog was Notes from the slop bucket. The next post in this blog is Heads roll at Oregon "lottery" agency. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Novick nixes L.O. streetcar

That news is buried way down at the bottom of this otherwise ho-hum story:

Novick, for example, said Portland shouldn't build a streetcar to Lake Oswego until east Portland residents have adequate bus service. He also said Portlanders should consider a local gas tax to fund transportation improvements.

That first part sounds good. The latter sounds like bike paths and streetcars.

Comments (20)

Your post the other day contained information that sounds like a local gas tax is already "too late to stop now".

http://bojack.org/2011/11
/where_to_go_to_find_sneaky_cit.html

I believe what the city has already hocked with those bonds is its share of the state gas tax.

Thanks for the clarification. It's easy to get into the habit of always assuming the worst around here.

Jefferson Smith tweeted pretty much the same thing yesterday, fwiw.

This is realy funny.

Last night at the same time, at seperate events, the LO and McLoughlin folks were expressing their rejection of the Streetcar/Light Rail and development plans being forced upon them.

Only now that the citizenry is in uproar from bluo collar McLouhglin to LO are these guys choosing to join in for political posture.

What next? Some of them brave enough to admit running a slow expensive train to Milwaukie is stupid and unwanted?

Is it becoming possible to keep the streetcar, light rail and Portland's transit oriented development out of Clackamas County?

Frankly, I see the light.

One more raging battle in Clackamas County and Lake Oswego and it's done.

This should be encouraging to those with longer wars needed to escape.

...This should be encouraging to those with longer wars needed to escape.

I am not sure what you meant by that last sentence.
Anyway, Thank you Ben for the report.
Good to see some light.

Streetcars, no. Bike paths, yes.

The numbers of bicyclists, if they keep growing, will reduce the number of cars on the road, and reduce the expense of road expansions by a far greater degree than the increase in bicycle routes.

And the best way to further increase bicyclists in this city is to provide safe routes for them, so that they don't interact as much with motorists.

Benjamin J how about if we just open the urban transit market to competition? Ya know openness used to be a good thing.

clinaman,
I meant that figured my friends in Multnomah County will need far more battles to get where it appears Clackamas County is.
And that Clackamas County's successes should be encouraging, and helpful.

The Lake Oswego battle has heated up well in advance of previous struggles so they have a very good chance of stopping the invasion there.
However, even with the invasion being further along over in the McLoughlin area folks there are mighty amped up and the county voters have come to their rescue in grand fashion.

The Elks open house last night by TriMet and Metro 9for the Park Avenue Station TOD) got an earful from area residents.

I heard a lot of, "That's a bunch of Portland crap. We don't want any of that".

And complaints about messing with the boulevard with the usual traffic obstructions and bioswales.

I think there is a strong chance LO and McLoughlin residents will defeat the cabal.

It's about time that politicians are seeing through the light rail/streetcar soup and seeing the permanent damage it has done to our region's transportation infrastructure and livability.

What light rail and the Streetcar have become is nothing more than a welfare subsidy to a select few developers and wealthy urbanites. It's finally coming out that TriMet's accounting that claims light rail is so cheap compared to the bus is hardly true...and hopefully before long those books will be cracked open to show the level of corruptness that exists there and at Metro.

How much longer until we can just break up these two government agencies (and the Port for good measure), and just have local cities handle those services like they should have all along? And Portland will no longer be able to rob from the suburbs and will have to give up URAs and other schemes. And maybe East Portland (east of I-205) will stand up and secede from West Portland, permanently eroding Portland City Hall's ability to lead the region by undemocratic edict and threat.

Thanks Ben.
I thought you might have meant that this should be encouraging to those in Portland who have fought long wars and can no longer tolerate more, that there would be a place they could escape to, a community where people would take action, stand up and say NO!

Erik H.
Tours need to be taken of East Portland, after what I have seen, they should stand up and secede.

Eric H.: As a former homeowner and resident of East Portland, it would be great if Portland East of say 102nd Avenue
voted to succeed from Portland and get annexed into Gresham - which has a much leaner city government and is much more open to citizen input. I suspect the taxes and other fees would be a lot lower as well...

Gresham - which has a much leaner city government and is much more open to citizen input. I suspect the taxes and other fees would be a lot lower as well...

The lean government is a function of the size of the city population and their low property tax base. Add a ton more people into the city, and, voila!, the government will get lots bigger.

A new city, "East Portland" (although I hope a better name could be found that doesn't include the word "Portland") could easily be drawn with the following boundaries:

The eastern property line of ODOT's real estate of Interstate 205,

The eastern property line of TriMet's MAX line, including the Gateway Transit Center,

The southern property line of ODOT's real estate of Interstate 84,

The western boundary of Gresham,

Johnson Creek, or S.E. Foster Road.

This allows the new city to have all of the homes and businesses but not have any responsibility over either I-205 or I-84, nor any responsibility over the MAX line save for what is actually on Burnside Street (and since the city won't have an agreement with TriMet, TriMet will be responsible for any police activity necessary within the MAX right-of-way or the Menlo Park park-and-ride facility), nor will the new city have to deal with Mount Tabor and its high-elevation snow removal needs.

The Glendoveer Golf Course can then be taken over from Metro and turned into a city park, and allowed to continue with Metro remaking it into an enclave for the rich. The Powell Butte Nature Park and Kelly Butte Nature Park will also be city parks.

Then once the city is formed, the school districts in the area can be carved up so that the city will have its own school district and not be divided between Parkrose, David Douglas, Portland and Gresham-Barlow.

And then the city will have its own ZIP Codes in the 970 or 971 region to separate it from Portland's 972 ZIP Codes. The City will also work with CenturyLink to create separate phone prefixes for the area.

And finally TriMet will be deannexed from the area and the city will have its own transit service.

Ta da. New city with no influence from Portland.

I wonder when Novick and Jefferson Smith will come out against the Barbur Portland to Tigard LigAnd shouldn't Amanda join in since she lives close to Barbur?

All Council candidates should be asked the hard questions with only a "no" or "yes" answer and no more than 15 words of attached platitudes.

Erik H.
You have thought this out.
I would add that the people of that area then need to proceed with downzoning to protect what livability is left in those neighborhoods.

I would add that the people of that area then need to proceed with downzoning to protect what livability is left in those neighborhoods.

People like Jack rightly decry the attempt by the arrogant Portland bureaucratic "elite" to force us all to live in high density apartment and condo bunkers.

And then someone like Clinamen comes along and demands that areas be "downzoned" so that only single-family homes can be built.

Either way, it's taking away our choice as citizens to choose what kind of housing we want to live in.

Both attitudes are equally obnoxious.

First place Benjamin J., I did not demand,
I said that area needed to proceed with downzoning to protect what livability is left in those neighborhoods. I suspect the people in the single family homes would like the choice of keeping some semblance of the neighborhood they bought into, instead of the extreme density and ghetto housing that was brought into some neighborhoods by the city rezoning.

There is plenty of density to live in if you choose, your choice if you wish to live in density certainly has not been taken in this city. What is being taken is the choice to live in a single family neighborhood when the city pushes rezoning and high density.

I did not say there should not be any apartment buildings or condos in a neighborhood, but at some point enough is enough and in order to have balance and maintain the character of a neighborhood and yes also have choice, is where downzoning comes in to stop undue infill.

Are you suggesting the city continues to change single family home neighborhoods for density?

Finally, why does that term downzoning scare you?

Thank you for clarifying, Clinamen.

The term "downzoning" scares me because it takes away property rights, which are a foundation of our nation. Such rights are not sacrosanct, but we should think and agonize about it before we allow government to take them away.

Guess we have a two way street going on here.

What about the property rights of homeowners who invested in their neighborhood, say for example an R7, an R5, what happened to their rights when the city comes in rezones to R2’s etc. What happened to the property rights then if a huge complex takes over their back yard, loss of privacy, garden growth, and yes, a loss of property value. Eventually the infill dominates the area so that the property rights of those who invested in their homes and neighborhood lose.

I know of many who live in that area who feel the city destroyed the character of their neighborhood and devalued their property. Did the government take their rights away?

I do not like to see the city wield its hammer here as I see it did by rezoning a huge area to allow extreme density and flag lots just to get more revenue, not at all concerned about the livability of the residents or their property values.

This was a Katz/Hales deal and had nothing to do with livability of the neighborhood nor with the livability of the people who live in these extreme density housing complexes. Older apartment complexes were more spacious and did blend in with the neighborhood.

I am not alone in wanting to preserve characters of neighborhoods. I am concerned about the character of our city and established neighborhoods are a great part of that.

New York may be ahead of us.

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/10/10/nyregion/10density.html?pagewanted=all

Those in favor of the recent downzonings say they will protect neighborhoods against out-of-scale development, especially in places without the infrastructure needed to handle growth. When balanced by increases in density elsewhere, they say, the downzonings will also stop real estate speculation and keep communities stable.
"If you allow the character of a neighborhood to be eroded, the people who live in that neighborhood will leave the city," said Amanda M. Burden, chairwoman of the City Planning Commission. "We can't allow that to happen. Protecting these different neighborhoods, we are providing New Yorkers with a diversity of housing choices."

http://www.nysun.com/real-estate/in-an-effort-to-restrict-residential-development/20024/

While the neighboring owner had paid $400,000 for the original house he's now reconstructing into three units, Mr. Kara feels his one-family unit has lost substantial value. "Would you move into a house that has a wall down your front walkway and has front and backyards that aren't usable?" he asks. "I feel like a prisoner in my own house."

As I stated before balance is needed and the area Erik H. referred to earlier and I added a comment to, has had more than its share of density.


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