This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on June 16, 2012 12:40 PM. The previous post in this blog was Walking away from the lies. The next post in this blog is Scenes from a drug bust. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Saturday, June 16, 2012

Lake O. apartment bunkers would be for "equity"

It's pretty clear where the O's sudden interest in the distribution of low-income housing is leading: It will help the apartment bunker construction Mafia make further inroads into the suburbs and tap their untouched pots of public money. Now Steve Duin is on the bandwagon, pushing the lame duck mayor's agenda in Lake Oswego.

It would be foolish for the population of that town to buy into the "equity" message. Little or no low-income housing is ever going to be built in L.O. But lots of market rate and luxury units will be, with budget-busting taxpayer subsidies to the Homer Williams types, if residents aren't vigilant. And "equity" is a red flag. The promise of helping the poor always gets the camel's nose into the tent. But then you wind up with disasters like the SoWhat District, where low-income people are an afterthought, and even the rich find themselves roughing it.

Comments (9)

Once again the Oregonian misses the point.

The City of Portland has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to fix make-believe "blight" in the core of the city while simultaneously creating, and making worse, actual blight in east Portland and elsewhere. These people aren't interested in equity, they're in it to amass money and power.

And I believe LO's "lame duck" mayor is a partner in the law firm that represents Williams and Dames. The mayor has stated that he only has a "potential" conflict of interest....really?

It is interesting how Pols/Bureaucrats/Planners/Developers turn ubiquitous words like Sustainable, Environmentally, (you finish the list) and now Equity into anything and anywhere they want to go.
Same goes with phrases like "similar in scale". All very interpretive. Attorney full time employment.

I use to wonder, when involved in planning processes, why these all encompassing words were inserted into planning documents without no clear definition. They wanted it that way. So they could interpret them any which way. Then souls like Duin could follow the party line and embellish how these practitioners are so worthy and doing their civic duty for us all.

These kinds of words become the "legal" and moral ticket for the P/B/P/D's to do anything they want, with our money.

"Lake Oswego sets up barriers. Gresham picks up the slack." Obviously, the missing link is here is........

Light Rail!!

People either don't know or conviently forget that Rockwood is a government creation - an unintended consequence that turned planning ideals into a suburban hell.

The City of Gresham was so eager to be part of the promise light rail growth that they were sitting ducks for TOD development along the Max line when it was being planned. A huge amount of acreage was zoned for multifamily in a town that was predominately SFR. The resulting density did several things. One thing it did not do is give life to a proposed business district which has been discussed, planned and attempted multiple times over the years but always failed.

The actual over-supply of units in the area brought the price (rent) for each of them down. The supply and demand theory at work. The sheer numbers of new transient residents added a burden to the city of previously stable middle-class citizens. They bring very little civic pride or connection to the city but instead pose a drain on resources with a need for more police presence, more social services, lower livibility, less economic investment. This was the beginning of TODs and the planners have not learned from the experiment but are repeating it all over the region. The lesson of subsidized housing is that once people move in, they never leave, and crime in the area goes up. No amount of architectural design can change that and neighborhoods do not change that.

Aside from TODs, no one wants to live near low income or "affordable" housing. Not even Steve Duin who lives in a very nice SFR enclave himself. A typical bleeding heart who doesn't mind spending taxpayer money to take care of all social ills whether or not the solution even works. Affordable housing is solved by more jobs and less government.

Nolo: Correct. But in addition, after the light rail line which we voted to construct went live, a number of unanticipated results occurred: crime became so endemic that the Mayor of Gresham assigned his police officers to step up patrols around stations - and occasionally, on the trains themselves.

Rockwood's Fred Meyer store (and the satellite businesses) soon closed, citing increases in shoplifting and other crime. Safeway held out a little longer, then closed, citing the same issues. The area is now considered a "food desert".

Now Rockwood just needs urban renewal. That's the ticket.

Oh, I forgot, it already has urban renewal.

Gosh, they've tried everything-mass transit, UR, subsidies, you name it. Maybe they should try getting rid of all the uber Planning and try free enterprise.

I haven't given this much thought, but one idea might be to learn from the histories of previous government-created ghettos. Tear them down. Buy up some of the worst places and reduce the number of units per acre. Leave the ones with decent landlords who operate civilized businesses and are willing to kick out the bums. With vouchers, the displaced can find housing elsewhere. Where will the lawbreakers go? I don't know. But if we keep making it easy for them to live amongst decent, law-abiding families, then they will be a plague that will never leave us. Some people just need external pressure to toe the line. Maybe Steve Duin can take a few of the rejected souls home to live with him?

Last comment - The bigotry that Duin expresses should not go unnoticed. He thinks his city is too white and too old. Who is he to decide what is too much of anything? Is he suggesting there should be quotas for where people can live? The lowest price SFR in LO last week was $140k. By Portland standards that is very affordable - in the real sense of the word, not the government's bastardization of it. So where are the low income young people of color breaking their necks trying to buy into the school district? Seems like Duin's ideas of what people need do not fit with what they want. I am offended by the pot shots people keep taking at LO while they ignore other neighborhoods that are far more wealthy than anything we have here. Duin's disrespect for his neighbors is obvious, and so is Mayor Hoffman's. It really makes one wonder why they chose to live in LO in the first place.

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