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Spotlight on: South Burlingame

There is a growing population of younger residents in the traditional middle-age neighborhood


by: CONNECTION PHOTO: DREW DAKESSIAN - South Burlingame.The South Burlingame neighborhood is a hub of residential and commercial life. South Burlingame Neighborhood Association Chair Betsy Shand is particularly fond of its views.

South Burlingame “enjoys a quick close commute to downtown Portland. It is nestled off the south side of I-5 off the Terwilliger curves. The east side of the neighborhood stretches down over the Stephens Creek Watershed area where wildlife still roams in the woods. The homes in this area have uninterrupted views of Mt. Hood and the Willamette River, some even see downtown,” she says.

In South Burlingame itself, Shand says, “Many of these homes enjoy views of the outer eastside as well as Mt. Hood and. Mt. St. Helen. The focal point for residents is the nearly 5-acre neighborhood park tucked away at the end of a dirt road.”

One of the best things about South Burlingame, according to Shand, is active citizen involvement.

At the yearly National Night Out event, “each year on the first Tuesday in August ... over 175 residents gather. People walk to the park, towing small children in wagons and pulling dogs by their leashes.”

This participation extends to the World Wide Web.

“Over 425 residents scattered across 700 homes communicate with each other on a daily basis through our Nextdoor.com site specifically set up for our neighborhood. ... with over 40 percent tuning in online!

But, Shand adds, “We still enjoy a robust neighborhood association that has championed local causes. This group of volunteers crosses many age groups. At the core, longtime residents lead newcomers into grant applications that fund sign caps, lot restoration and neighborhood markers. It is. Old and new technology from online shout outs to the power of the pen in writing grants (more than 5 in 4 years) has funded the causes put forth by a dedicated group of volunteers that swell over crime issues, land use violations and in support of a more livable neighborhood.”

Demographically, the prominent use of Nextdoor.com “attests to the growing younger population that is overtaking the middle age middle class and empty nesters who once dominated the area,” Shand says. “Now one can see parent and baby walking through the area from every age, many of whom attend the neighborhood grade school, Capitol Hill. The demographic is young, multilingual affluent educated professional mostly doctors, attorneys, financial planners and some small business owners. Fading are the families with grown children many well to do enough to be able to winter in warmer climates.

“The recent proposal by the largest home builder in the US may spur to action the more conservative types who cherish the quiet close in life afforded in SB as it is threatened with development that uproots wildlife, increases traffic and affects the environment in negative ways, but progress cannot be stopped.”