Demolition debate continues in Portland

‘This neighborhood is under attack,’ Portland resident says in response to rash of demolitions. 

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Planned demolitions around Portland are continuing to elicit a visceral response from neighbors.

The most recent target is a 100-year old church in NE Portland that is listed on the city’s Historic Resource Inventory List, the Portland Tribune reports.

“We’re unhappy about that being the plan, first of all,” neighbor Carrie Crimin said. “The church has been here more than 100 years and it would be nice to, if it’s not going to be a working church, but it would have been great to have a community center or something that could have been used in the neighborhood.”

A group called Save PDX Diversity and History has started a petition to save the building, which was built in 1904 and has housed several churches and community groups over the years. The petition says the building “represents the diverse and multi-cultural character of the Interstate Corridor Urban Renewal Area (ICURA) one of the most diverse areas in Portland’s central city.”

The developer bought the building in December and plans to build a duplex.

In SE Portland, a neighbor said her “neighborhood is under attack” in response to a plan to demolish a farmhouse built in 1916. writes:

The change that’s sweeping over this part of Southeast Portland is occurring for a couple of reasons, said Bob Kellett, neighborhood planning program manager for the Southeast Uplift Neighborhood Coalition. The area has many single-family homes on large lots, and the area is seen as the “next domino” in the remaking that has overtaken Sellwood, Woodstock, Richmond and other closer-in neighborhoods, he said.

Douglas MacLeod, principal broker with Summa Real Estate Executives, will eventually sell the two houses that will replace the 1916 farmhouse. He says that kind of infill development employs workers, builds value and adds housing to a city that sorely needs it.

MacLeod said the homes being built would be “good for the community.”

What do you think: Do the benefits of demolitions outweigh the loss of historic homes and structures? Comment below.


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