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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on November 19, 2012 8:49 AM. The previous post in this blog was Portland business group blasts school district, teachers union. The next post in this blog is Next U of O outrage: semi-private golf course for the well heeled. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



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Monday, November 19, 2012

Rape of W. Hayden Island: Even architecture dude gets it

The paving over of wildlife habitat on West Hayden Island by the Port of Portland for a pointlessly redundant shipping terminal will be one of the final disgusting acts perpetrated by the Sam Rand Twins as they leave City Hall. Shame on the three continuing members of the City Council, who are playing right along, and shame on the Goldschmidt Party people who are pushing so hard to make yet more bucks for themselves and their friends at the expense of the birds and the bees.

The sacrifice of struggling wildlife for the sake of a quick buck is so egregious that it's even attracted the opprobrium of a local architecture critic, and that's saying something. Usually the architects are among the prime villains in the wrecking of Portland livability, and their media followers usually try to help them get away with it. But in this case, one such writer, Brian Libby, is speaking up eloquently:

Last night's hearing before the Planning and Sustainability Commission, the only opportunity for public comment, was practically a caricature of self-serving moneyed interests pitted against community members fighting only for values and their homes.

Whenever someone testified in favor of industrial annexation, he or she came from an organization that would directly benefit from the environmental usurpation. A union representative whose colleagues would be hired for the construction on West Hayden spoke of "family-wage jobs," implying that trying to save endangered species directly resulted in his babies going unfed. A series of business and port alliance representatives, neckties removed from their black suits, sung the praises of industrial development and finished their remarks to the sound of silence from the packed audience or some poor unironic single clap. Whenever a homeowner about to be displaced or choked by diesel fumes pleaded with the council for mercy, or an environmental group leader pleaded for the accelerated timetable to be slowed down, a chorus of applause rang out from the commission chamber and its filled overflow-room....

The annexation of West Hayden Island would be troubling enough in its own right, but now Mayor Sam Adams is attempting to skip the unfolding process and bring about a City Council vote by the end of the year. Even those at last night's hearing tentatively willing to support the annexation admitted they felt blindsided and disappointed by the mayor's effort to seal the deal before he leaves office at year's end. Most of the community groups at the hearing, such as a group of Native American tribes with ancestral connections to the Columbia and to West Hayden, told the Planning and Sustainability Commission they had never been brought to the negotiating table until the deal was already done....

The West Hayden Island annexation plan is to take 300 of the remaining 800 acres for Port of Portland expansion. That may sound like a fair trade-off at first: wildlife still gets more than half. But think of those 800 total acres as the last toothpaste in a tube already squeezed to the limit. Aside from a few tiny parcels here and there, the city has already taken virtually all of the wildlife area that ever existed in the Portland area. If we take 300 of 800 acres remaining on West Hayden Island, we're not leaving more than half to wildlife and the floodplain. We're going from 98 percent of local wild areas claimed for development to 99 percent. We're squeezing the very last remnants out of the toothpaste tube and expecting no future cavities to form.

The whole thing is here. It's one of the best commentaries on Portland hypocrisy in a long time, and one of the very best things written so far about the shabby farce being played out around the environmental atrocities soon to come to West Hayden Island.

Of course, there's not much architecture involved in a shipping terminal -- a giant parking lot and some cranes -- and so it doesn't cost Libby too much to speak his mind. But he's noble to do so. It's too bad that as usual, the fix is in in Portland.

Comments (14)

Yeah, it's an OK post. But it's made much worse by the fact that Libby felt compelled to take a gratuitous shot at "Republicans."

We are already supporting a huge amount of park and other publicly owned land that doesn't pay property taxes. That's my first reason for questioning the new terminal project on West Hayden Island. The second reason is harder: what will the future look like? Will international shipping stay level grow or decline? If it doesn't grow then maybe a West Hayden Island would be a gamble the lost.

Note: Land not paying property taxes includes all publicly owned buildings, bus terminals, parks, MAX ROW and facilities and much more. Forest Park for example is a huge, non-tax paying piece already. Milwaukie MAX takes more properties (land, buildings) off the tax rolls. Of course churches and other non-profits don't pay property taxes on what they own either. Which leaves the rest of us ordinary, modest folk to pay for BFPDR and the all of local government and schools.

Most of the community groups at the hearing, such as a group of Native American tribes with ancestral connections to the Columbia and to West Hayden, told the Planning and Sustainability Commission they had never been brought to the negotiating table until the deal was already done.

When did progressives make the sleazy little leap into believing that, since the Native American genocide was so long ago, the remaining tribes don't matter at all? You have Carla at Blue Oregon taking money to screw over Native Americans on the casino deal - or trying to anyway until the whole thing slid down the toilet along with her other work for Jefferson what's-his-name.

When did it become okay - in this equity-crazed environment - to kiss off one part of the population completely? My band used to rehearse on Sauvie Island and one day I saw mention of these villages there. Here's from the Sauvie Island Community Association: "The original inhabitants of the island were the Multnomah tribe of the Chinook Indians. There were 15 Multnomah villages on the island, and the 2,000 islanders lived in cedar log houses 30 yards long and a dozen yards wide."

I'm sure there are tribal connections to West Hayden and the idea that they weren't even consulted about something this big is disgusting.

I'm a progressive myself and I'm very disappointed at how they're acting lately. This post compares them to Republicans, but the whole thing smacks of another humanitarian crisis: Gaza. This is a polite Portland version of the Middle East - a land grab with the rights of the locals not even considered.

I don't know about the economic forecast but the guy mentions things that could happen in 20 years. We've heard that exact number before in trying to sell other scams. We shouldn't be stuck with something so Sam can try and prop up his legacy. I have a feeling in 20 years, he'll still be regarded as one of the worst financial stewards the city ever had, assuming the city survives that long.

Libby's blog, Portland Architecture, has never been a media follower of the monied developer and architect crowd, championing them as they destroy Portland's livability.

Libby celebrates the small architects (and at times developers) on their way to creating projects that enhance Portland's aesthetic for the long term. If you ask me, Libby's voice is perfectly appropriate here. Good for him.

Porland Architecture does as much for setting Portland straight as Bojack, in different ways, of course.

"Aside from a few tiny parcels here and there, the city has already taken virtually all of the wildlife area that ever existed in the Portland area."

That is preposterous. We have the 2nd largest urban wild area in the country in Forest Park. We have given Metro a levy to buy up large wilderness areas around the Metro region. The reason that the city "takes" the wildlife area is that it is a city. Drive 20 minutes and you'll see thousands of square miles of wildlife habitat protected by the UGB. That is the explicit purpose and tradeoff of the UGB.

To me the question is, does the Port really need additional facilities? Probably a good argument can be made that they do not. But the wild life argument bugs me a bit. This land is not pristine either. My understanding is that it has been previously logged and used to dump dredge materials for decades.

Yeah, Bill. And Sam took as good of care of Portland as he did of his pickup truck which he careened around in, beered up, with his pants down, smashing into traffic and bashing into parked cars, all the while trying to escape responsibility for his selfish ego-rampage of corruption, carnage, lies, and notoriety. And all in the service of the Goldschmidt Gang.

Aside from the irrelevant and stupid remark about Republicans this is a pertinent post.
The fact that this is even being considered is outrageous- hard to believe no one gives a damn and the Portland City Councilors rubber stamp this travesty.
Where are all the folks who should be protesting this? Where is the Occupy group?
Is no one paying attention? Mitigation for wildlife and low income citizens? Really?
Come on folks-organize and don't let this happen.

METRO is currently testing the waters for a bond measure to purchase even more land for environmental preservation.

So let me get this straight...the taxpayers will foot the bill to develop one wildlife area while we (potentially) foot the bill to buy others? Jesus H. Christ. It never stops, does it?

At the end of the day, the concerns I have shared on this blog in the past, with the Council, and in other forums on this issue have not changed in their relevancy over time.

The bottom line is that the concept plan put forward by the Port has a very weak business case and the economic development potential is likely
far below the presumptions.

I am not immune to the environmental and social impacts but the weak business case remains my single biggest concern.

What make the Port's plan for a marine terminal on Hayden Island weak?

1) Rail Capacity are the real challenge: The freight bottlenecks in the NW aren't marine facilities, it is lack of rail capacity and the dramatic pinch points in the regional freight rail system.

Even the Port recognizes this. In its "Working Harbors Reinvestment Strategy" report from 2006, the Port identified
"over committed rail" as the most pressing competitive issue for trade in the region.

2)The Columbia Will Not Become Deeper. We can't accommodate the largest ships. 25 percent of the container ship capacity coming to the west coast (super post-panamax ships) cannot off load in Portland. Further, this is the area of growth in shipping; 2/3 of ships on order at present are super post-panamax ships, so this competitive disadvantage will only grow.

3) The Columbia Will Not Become Shorter. Shipping via the Port of Portland has unique challenges and costs because
ships must navigate the Columbia for nearly 100 miles. Unlike other West Coast
ports, two different pilots are required to operate boat traffic serving the

4) We Have Enough Marine Capacity. The capacity is not needed. Existing Port of Portland terminals with planned
improvements can handle more than
double today’s cargo volume and still not be at capacity (Source: Port of Portland 2020 Marine Terminal Master Plan)

When ICTSI began operating Terminal 6 under a 25 year lease, their CEO, Enrique Razon, stated to the Oregonian:

"Right now the port is very well equipped for the work it has," Razon said. "We
could easily double the throughput (using existing equipment)."

Most of the press coverage on West Hayden Island has ignored examining the business case in favor of a "jobs vs. environment" narrative. This is unfortunate since it plays to knee jerk positioning rather than thoughtful dialogue and review.

The simple truth is that if the Council hands this unique parcel over to the Port to support its ill conceived development plan, the real tragedy will be that the environmental degradation and community impact will be for a project that is destined to miss every promise of job creation and regional significance.

I strongly encourage anyone concerned about this project, to contact all the Council members today at tell them to either vote against the annexation or remove any consideration of West Hayden Island from the Council agenda for the foreseeable future:

Amanda Fritz: 503-823-3008

Dan Saltzman: 503-823-4151

Nick Fish: 503-823-3589

Randy Leonard: 503-823-4682

Sam Adams: 503-823-4120

Thank you for reading all the way to the bottom of this comment.

Way to bring it with the information. Are you the same Tony Fuentes I did the cyber-interview with a while back? If so, thanks again.

This is such a bad business plan you'd think somebody must be on the take.

Of course that kind of thing couldn't possibly happen here in sleepy little Portland.

You are welcome Bill. And yes, I followed in Jack's footsteps as one of the Armchair Mayors on Neighborhood Notes.

BTW - among the reams of information on this project proposal is a summary of all the rail issues in the region and, notably, nearly none of the rail freight mobility projects have any funding identified:

One of many key quotes -

"During the (West Hayden Island) planning process, several stakeholders have raised concerns over the effect marine terminal development may have on the BNSF main line and the Columbia River rail bridges, which are perceived to be congested choke points."

That "perception" is only one of the major realities in our region when it comes to our major freight rail challenges.

SIncere thanks for the positive feedback on my blog post. Not only is it great to hear this piece resonated, but also to hear that someone associates me with little-guy architects and firms over the big boys. Great to hear.

I know I'm honestly probably more of a liberal than a lot of the people reading this, but I love the idea that there are some issues or projects that we can see eye to eye on as both left and right of center people. I feel very "conservative", for example, about the Columbia Crossing, which I see as a tragic billion-dollar mess.

Someone made note of my wisecrack about Republicans, and honestly, I'd take that one back if I could. It was unnecessary and I'm sorry about that one.


---Brian Libby

Libby is, as he says, very liberal. And, as he also says, there are many points all political spectrums can agree on, Hayden Island and the CRC included. But most architects today worship the God of Smart Growth, and even the little guy architects fall for the no-car apartments as part of Portland's "livable" future. In LO and Clakistan we are fighting against not just "smart" growth, but the sameness of thought and creative expression that is coming from these so-called creatives in urban planning and design.

Whatever happens with Hayden Island, sadly it is just a small piece of what has been going on in the Metro area for decades. The fix is in before the public ever hears about or gets to comment on a development, and the metro area is being developed in ways that are making it less and less livable. Developers and ideology trump livability, creativity and public preference every time.


As a lawyer/blogger, I get
to be a member of:

In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
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Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
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Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
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Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
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Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
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King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
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La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
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Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
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Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
King Estate, Pinot Gris, Backbone 2014
Oberon, Napa Cabernet 2013
Apaltagua, Envero Carmenere Gran Reserva 2013
Chateau des Arnauds, Cuvee des Capucins 2012
Nine Hats, Red 2013
Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Roxy Ann, Claret 2012
Januik, Merlot 2012
Conundrum, White 2013
St. Francis, Sonoma Cabernet 2012

The Occasional Book

Marc Maron - Waiting for the Punch
Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
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Richard Adams - Watership Down
Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
Anthony Doerr - All the Light We Cannot See
James Joyce - Dubliners
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John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
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David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
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Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
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Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
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Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
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Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
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Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
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Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 5
At this date last year: 3
Total run in 2017: 113
In 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

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