News on the Portland neighborhood beat
New park set for debut
Neighborhood residents are invited to a tree-planting ceremony and dedication at the new Hazelwood Hydro Park, a five-acre parcel of green space owned by the Portland Water Bureau that has been developed into a city park.
The park, at Northeast 117th Avenue and Holladay Street, has walking paths, tables and benches and soon will host a water feature and bioswale that will catch runoff. An old city water tank and pump sit on the site; the tank's now painted with 'Hazelwood,' making it a neighborhood landmark.
There is a building on the site, which the water bureau uses to store equipment and which the Hazelwood Neighborhood Association uses as a meeting space. The dirt road that accesses the park is scheduled to be paved early next year to allow passage by emergency vehicles.
The Villa Garden Club, led by neighborhood resident Dorothy Drews, will plant a native bigleaf maple tree at the park at 1 p.m. Sept. 28, as part of the Oregon State Federation of Garden Clubs Inc.'s national tree-planting program. Commissioner Randy Leonard, who oversees the water bureau, will lead the dedication, and the public is invited.
Lofts spark concern
Neighbors are upset about a proposed condominium development that could transform the Llewellyn area of the Westmoreland neighborhood.
Construction at the intersection of Southeast Martins Street and Milwaukie Avenue would begin with the demolition of a house, which was built in 1912 and sits next door to a restored farmhouse.
The development would be called Llewellyn Lofts, and developers have been granted a building permit. A timetable for completion has not been finalized. The project's dimensions and amenities were unavailable at press time.
Play equipment installed
Students at the new Ockley Green arts and science magnet school this week will get to use their new play equipment, which they received from the school district as part of the reconstruction effort.
The former middle school, 6031 N. Montana Ave., is the only one to convert to a full kindergarten-through-eighth-grade school this year.
The younger kids needed age-appropriate play space. Additions include a climbing area, slide, tire swing and educational components such as facts about the solar system and a map of the United States.
The school enrolled 448 students, many of whom transferred from other middle schools around the city or came from home-schooling situations, Principal Joseph Malone said.
The school year is off to a good start, he said, with the biggest challenge being getting the cafeteria schedules right. The school's major need now is a covered area outside for rainy days, he said.
Wine tasting to raise cash
The nonprofit group that runs Portland's Northeast Community Center will stage its second annual wine-testing benefit at the center from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday.
For a $20 donation, people can sample wines and appetizers provided by local businesses and restaurants.
Proceeds from the event will go toward the operating costs of the community center, 1630 N.E. 38th Ave., which at one time was a YMCA. The YMCA sold the building to Portland businessman Dan Dolan early last year after YMCA officials said the center was losing money.
Dolan now leases the building to a nonprofit that he helped set up to run the center.
Two new trails opened
It's been three years since a new trail was constructed in Forest Park, and in that time things have gotten a little contentious between hikers and mountain bikers. The Friends of Forest Park offers a little relief this week when it opens two new short trails that will complete larger loops - one for hikers, one for bikers.
The biking trail extends Fire Lane 5 to Northwest Saltzman Road. The pedestrian trail, called the Cannon Trail, links Leif Erikson Trail to a spot at which the Wildwood Trail intersects Northwest Germantown Road.
Grants from the Oregon Parks Foundation, the Northwest Neighborhood Parks and Recreation Fund and the Oregon Community Foundation helped pay for the trail work. Most of the labor was supplied by AmeriCorps.
Maps showing the new trails haven't been printed yet, but they are online at www.friendsofforestpark.org.
Church sets up cleanup
The Vermont Hills United Methodist Church is sponsoring a neighborhood cleanup beginning with complimentary continental breakfast at 8 a.m. Saturday. It will be held at the church, located near Alpenrose Dairy, 6053 S.W. 55th Drive.
Church officials say the goal is to clean one or two square miles around the church. Gloves and plastic bags will be provided to volunteers. For information, call 503-246-1213.