Hillsdale Neighborhood Association Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, November 6, 2013 7:00 p.m.
St. Barnabas Episcopal Church
MOTION 2013-11-1: Don Baack moved that the Hillsdale Neighborhood Association support funding for the Red Electric Trail to get a pedestrian trail in place east of the Town Center following the Slavin Road route in the very near future, and acquire the Right of Way for the Red Electric Trail to the west of Hillsdale, and as a second priority the funds to do a master plan for Dewitt Park to make it a place for all ages, and as a third priority funds to improve the streets and sidewalks adjacent to parks in Southwest. The question was called, all in favor.
7:01 p.m. Agenda and Minutes. The meeting was called to order by President Mikal Apenes. Self-introductions were made. Motion to approve October minutes, seconded, all in favor. Motion to approve agenda, seconded, all in favor.
7:10 p.m. Hillsdale Main Street Design Guidelines. Richard Garfinkle and Richard Stein presented. The Design Committee is working with Hillsdale businesses and an architect to create some basic signage guidelines so that future signage is less cluttered and clearer. A draft of the guidelines was distributed to those present. They propose a simple steel frame with business names printed on horizontal panels that are easy to change as businesses change. It is not known yet whether these types of signs conform to City code. It was suggested that the Hillsdale gateway signs be replaced to reflect these standards and provide an example for businesses to follow. Other ideas discussed include sign caps that conform to the guidelines, neon or LED signage, free standing block letter signage, backlighting, and signage in multiple languages. Businesses on each side of the highway have different signage needs. Businesses may resist investing extra time, energy, or money to conform to the guidelines. One idea is to incentivize businesses to update their signage. Rather than placing large signs by all the businesses, it may be more effective and aesthetic to focus future signage on the identity of Hillsdale itself as a shopping destination, possibly with new gateway signs that incorporate “directories” that list individual business names. A goal is to work toward signage that appeals to both automobile and pedestrian traffic. In other Main Street news, Megan Braunstein recently was let go because Main Street can no longer afford a paid Executive Director, and storefront improvement projects are being carried out.
7:55 p.m. Hillsdale Park Priorities. Don Baack presented. Portland Parks and Recreation’s (PP&R) System Development Charge (SDC) fund has now grown to eight million dollars. The HNA Parks Committee met on October 22 and inventoried Hillsdale’s parks. Improvements needed are accessible play equipment, trashcans, signage, trails, landscaping, bathrooms, drinking fountains, and more. It was noted that SDC funds are to be used to create new capacity, not for repairs, so the Rieke soccer field repairs would not qualify for this funding. MOTION: Don moved that the Hillsdale Neighborhood Association support funding for the Red Electric Trail to get a pedestrian trail in place east of the Town Center following the Slavin Road route in the very near future, and acquire the Right of Way for the Red Electric Trail to the west of Hillsdale, and as a second priority the funds to do a master plan for Dewitt Park to make it a place for people of all ages. Seconded. Discussion followed. Don emphasized the Committee’s goal to involve the community in designing park improvements. Wes Risher provided written comments proposing that SDC investments focus on PP&R-owned properties where sidewalk and street conditions are sub-standard, including Miles Street between Barbur and Brier Place, Hillsdale Park frontage along Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway, the incomplete bike lane on Terwilliger Boulevard between Chestnut Street and Caldew Street, and improvements along Terwilliger between Chestnut Street and 7th Avenue implementing the recommendations of the 1983 Terwilliger Parkway Corridor Plan. MOTION: Keturah Pennington moved to amend the current motion by adding Wes’s comments, seconded, all in favor. AMENDED MOTION: Don moved that the Hillsdale Neighborhood Association support funding for the Red Electric Trail to get a pedestrian trail in place east of the Town Center following the Slavin Road route in the very near future, and acquire the Right of Way for the Red Electric Trail to the west of Hillsdale, and as a second priority the funds to do a master plan for Dewitt Park to make it a place for all ages, and as a third priority funds to improve the streets and sidewalks adjacent to parks in Southwest. The question was called, all in favor. It was suggested that PP&R use SDC funds to acquire the old YMCA facility at DuniwayPark, and Don will take this idea to the SWNI Parks meeting tomorrow night.
8:15 p.m. Committee Reports.
Transportation Glenn Bridger presented. The sidewalk next to the Golden Touch Restaurant has improved pedestrian access. Glenn received a comment that the new sidewalk along Sunset makes nearby homes more attractive for purchase. The SW Corridor Plan is moving towards approval by METRO. The sewer project at Terwilliger and Capitol Highway is underway, and BES has confirmed its commitment to the invasive removal program.
SWNI Glenn Bridger presented. Joan Frederiksen of the Portland Planning Bureau will be invited to the December meeting to demonstrate the online tool for public input on the Comprehensive Plan. Glenn will follow up on inviting a Wilson student to serve on the HNA Board. Recent SWNI events included Police Recognition and Fall Clean Up. Residents near WoodsPark are supporting an effort to have the Freeman Water Tower site added to the park.
Hillsdale Alliance No report.
Main Street The Paella Dinner event on November 9 still needs volunteers. New recycling containers have been ordered. A plan for the pedestrian plaza has been drafted and fundraising efforts are being planned.
Schools Despite projections, overall enrollment is up for PPS. PPS is working with the Teachers’ Union on a contract. Security improvements are underway district-wide, paid for by bond funds. Area schools were briefly locked down today due to a fugitive at large. The SWNI School Committee is looking at use of technology. Rieke, Robert Gray, and Wilson have fundraising and cultural events underway.
SWNI See Parks report above.
Hillsdale Business & Professional Association No report.
SW Trails Don Baack presented. Safeway and the City finished the 100-foot extended shoulder between the Christian school and sidewalk after receiving neighborhood input. Signage is needed to prevent cars from parking there.
Parks See Parks report above.
Land Use Nothing this month.
8:45 p.m. Announcements. November 9, 5:00 – 6:30 p.m. St. Barnabas Church will host a free turkey dinner, all are welcome. Arnie Panitch offered kudos to Don Baack for four recent accomplishments: a new drinking fountain serving adults, disabled, and dogs, the extended shoulder by Safeway, a page about SW Trails PDX in the Portland Pedestrian Guide, and a story featuring SW Trails PDX in the Oregonian. Don’s role in these efforts was acknowledged with a round of applause.
8:50 p.m. Adjourn.
Motion to adjourn, seconded, all in favor.