Minutes from December 2, 2015

Hillsdale Neighborhood Association Minutes

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

St. Barnabas Episcopal Church


Next meeting: Wednesday, January 6; at 7 p.m. at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church. Board meeting, open to the public, begins at 6:30 p.m.

Board Meeting & General Meeting

Action Item 2015-12-2-1

Don Baack moved that the Board approve sponsorship of the Smile Oregon program of free dental care, supporting their Gabriel Park summer 2016 walk program. The motion was seconded and discussed. Robert Hamilton moved that a decision by the board be tabled until the board meeting of January 6, 2016. The motion was seconded and approved unanimously by the Board.

President Duane Hunting opened the meeting of the board of directors at 6:30 p.m. and the general membership meeting at 7:05 p.m. The draft Minutes of the November 4 general meeting were approved. Members introduced themselves and Board members and alternates identified themselves.

The President noted the excused absences of Board members Wes Risher, Carolyn Raz, and Rick Meigs. Duane also reminded the Board of the need to recruit a Vice-President and Secretary (Position Numbers 2 and 3) as soon as possible, as well as a new President (Position 1) in the first quarter of 2016 because of his own plans to move from Hillsdale to a different neighborhood at that time.

Duane distributed three pages from the original 1997 Hillsdale Town Center Plan, which identified major planning concepts. Duane listed the goals which were subsequently achieved, such as: a new Hillsdale Library, bike lanes on SW Vermont Street, the Hillsdale Sunday Farmers Market, Turning Point, The Watershed, and a dozen other achievements. Duane asked HNA members to suggest new specific goals which should be included in the next Comprehensive Plan for Portland and the Southwest Corridor Plan. Our recommendations will be the result of the Hillsdale Strategic Planning process. Duane identified ten categories for updating the Hillsdale Town Center Plan:

  1. Land use and zoning;
  2. Transportation;
  3. Business growth and development;
  4. Urban design;
  5. Community standards;
  6. Equity and diversity;
  7. Environment and recreation;
  8. Housing;
  9. Schools; and
  10. Parks and trails

The remainder of the meeting was devoted to possible goals for an updated HNA Action Plan, including, among others: covering the Town Center plaza for bikes and diners; narrow the turn lane on Bertha Boulevard to add a buffered bike lane, and improve drainage; change the zoning on Bertha Blvd. to allow commercial activity; investigate a transportation grant from Metro to promote commercial activity on Bertha Blvd.; find ways to increase building density at the intersection of Bertha/Vermont; improve transportation along Capitol and Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway; and underground utilities within the commercial district, including a financing plan.

The meeting Board Meeting was adjourned, and the General Meeting began at 7 p.m.

Treasurer Don Baack reported a bank account of $546.

Eli Spevak reported on residential infill efforts within Portland and the role of Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU). He stressed the importance of building more “small homes” to give potential new buyers affordable medium-sized dwellings—those between single-family residences and four-story apartments. ADU help achieve greater population density within the metropolitan area, allowing, for example, 12 homes to share a courtyard, rather than six single-family residences on the same square footage of land. More than 300 ADU, with a height limit of 18 feet, are being constructed annually in Portland. Eli provided two related websites: “www.Orangesplot.net” to learn more about his professional expertise and experience; and www.AccessoryDwellings.org for more information about ADU. Barbara Bowers recommended the reading of Tactical Urbanism by Mike Lydon and Anthony Garcia.

Schools: Robert Hamilton reported that the Tech Connect event on November 18 at Jackson Middle School included a robotics display constructed by students at Wilson High School, a presentation on the importance of providing hi-tech hardware and software and instruction in using both to enhance student research techniques, classroom instruction, and to prepare them for college or the job market. HNA schools representative to SWNI, Michael Reunert, was instrumental in organizing the Tech Connect event.

Hillsdale Business & Professional Association: Dr. Richard Garfinkle encouraged members to take advantage of the Golden Tickets program of Hillsdale and Multnomah Village and the discounts available at local retail stores during December. Rick also reported that HBPA has added a number of new, younger, enthusiastic members recently, and he described the Smile Oregon dental program directed by his son, orthodontist Dr. Judah Garfinkle.

SWNI, SW Trails, and Parks: Don Baack reported that SWNI has added two new staff positions, while one person has resigned. Southwest Trails has announced a policy to ask the City Council and SWNI coalition members to join “The Southwest in Motion.” This includes evaluating all 1-15-year projects in order to assign a priority ranking to each of the approximately 200 projects, 15-16 of which are in Hillsdale. Don said that about 15 people participated in the Thanksgiving Day walk. Finally, PPS is in the midst of a reorganization of the city bureau.

Land Use: Duane Hunting announced a notice of a Pre-Application Conference on Dec. 10 for a property at 3024 SW Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway (eastside corner of SW 30th Avenue).

Miscellaneous: Arnie Panitch suggested inviting Wilson teacher Mr. Nam to explain his reasons for wanting Portland Public Schools to re-name the high school. HNA members passed unanimously an “Advisory” that the Board supports Smile Oregon. Don Baack, discussing the recent SOLVE Clean-up, noted that Hillsdale’s seven parks include evidence of approximately a dozen camps established over time by homeless individuals or groups. Members will discuss at the next meeting how best to assist the homeless in Hillsdale meet their residence, nutrition, and social needs. Barbara Bowers suggested we include Wilson High School Students and Portland State University students in giving us their suggestions for future development in Hillsdale as it relates to the ongoing Hillsdale Town Center Plan. Glenn Bridger encouraged members to attend the Dec. 7 discussion at the Multnomah Art Center of the draft “Racial Equity Policy.”

The meeting was adjourned at 9:05 p.m.

Submitted by Robert Hamilton

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