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Dave

A good portion of NW Portland traffic is drivers circling for parking, so building a big garage may very well *reduce traffic*. I wonder if data for this possibility has been collected, and whether that data has been presented to the neighborhood association and residents?

Greg Haworth

I can certainly sympathize with the neighbors directly impacted, especially the house next door. The proposed structure presents a large mass that seems awfully close in the renderings.

That said, it does appear the design is sensitive to the location. As to whether it will improve parking by providing 87 parking places -- not a chance in my opinion. Maybe on 18th and there, only a little. This NW district is a zoo and i don't know how the residents put up with it. It's not only the curb space that is an issue. It is also the noise and the trash that is generated.

I recently moved from the inner SE where i lived one block off the Belmont commercial district. The main reason was i had just had enough; i was tired of being waken at the wee hours, and tired of picking up trash in my yard on a daily basis. I could of put up with the lack of parking and having to park a couple of blocks away from my house. But the rest -- not anymore.

If a similar structure were proposed and built in this area, again, i really doubt that the lack of parking, the noise and the garbage would have improved.

Maybe i'm wrong. And for the residents in the NW i really hope i am.

skodt

The pay by the hour surface lots and the underground lot beneath Pottery Barn are rarely filled, and are almost always close to empty. I cannot see why more spaces are needed.

I live on 23rd and have NEVER had a problem parking. One block is the most I have ever had to walk from my car. Actually, I only drove 2000 miles last year since this is a walking/biking/transit neighborhood, which brings me to the next point...

Close 23rd to traffic between about Johnson and Flanders and make it an outdoor plaza like we frequently see in European, East Asian, and South American cities. Shopowners could set up in the middle of the street, and cafes could sprawl into the lanes. Nobody would complain about narrow sidewalks, and 23rd would become even more of a destination. Then, if it is still necessary, put garages at far opposite ends of 23rd on currently vacant land, and encourage people to walk.

Brian Libby

There's parking under Pottery Barn? Why didn't anyone tell me?!

And 'skotd', I'm happy you have had such good luck with parking in that area, but I can't say the same. I always feel like I'm parking on Quimby when my destination is on Everett.

Craig

The NW Examiner I believe has some statistics on the existing surface parking lot at that location. The statistics are pretty damning to the Garage builders. It just doesn't fill up. I've never understood why that location was the choice for this concrete oily beast. The plaid Pantry parking lot on 23rd would work fine for this thing or the empty lot on lovejoy between 22nd and 23rd. The insistence on developing this site and destroying a historic building is the issue. I'm glad the NIMBYS are fighting back on this.

val

"garage supporters might want to add a few doilies or a pitched roof to the design just to be safe. That way the historic district's original architecture can be properly caricatured."

I think your sarcasm is a bit ridiculous and off base. The garage issue is a very serious one that could set a precedent for neighborhoods citywide.

It's interesting how developers in Portland are building 4 story or so condo buildings with inadeqaute parking, claiming that not all tenants will be drivers, while at the same time we're supposed to be supportive of infill garages? What's wrong with this picture? Drivers are like water - whenever there is an easier route or (in this case) place to park, they will head that direction. I see it all the time when Powell Blvd. is backed up in the morning and cars start squirting off onto side streets like Clinton looking for some advantage. The point is that a parking garage will have the same effect, making it more attractive for people to drive into the district rather than use mass transit. Ultimately that could mean more garages will be sought and where will we put those? I prefer the stance that we should be encouraging and expanding pedestrian and transit use in NW. The city should be about people not the automobile.

Brian Libby

Val, the passage you quoted is indeed ridiculous. I'll let others decide if it's off base, but it does express the frustration and disconnect that exists sometimes philosophically speaking about how to approach historic preservation. This is somewhat of a separate conversation, I guess, which makes my joke, as you said, off base. But I've kept the wisecrack in the post, because I think if we're talking about the Historic Landmarks Commission and the Nob Hill/Alphabet District/23rd Avenue area, there's a history of tension that would otherwise be the elephant in the room.

BILLB

'close 23rd' this died a painful death in Eugene , it rains here a bit!
As for the Nimby's , what happened to a person's right to use his/her property ? The notion that no one can do anything that someone somewhere doesn't like is morally repugnent. I can't stand Gingerbread on your house , but I will defend your right to use it.
A city is vibrant and alive only if we have change! If folks want to live in some fixed unchanging environment , move to the Amish Homeworld.

goose

like val said, if you build it they will come. an 87-space parking garage will only attract more drivers. naturally we will then need to build wider sidewalks to accomodate all these people and their bags. and strollers. so get rid of the cars and just run a streetcar through there. i caught a little of brian's sarcasm, but what the hell?

back to the garage. i think it is fair for the neighborhood to object to the proposed location. i never understood why this garage had to be in the middle of the shopping district rather than at the end or on an empty parcel (other than thats the property they own). it seems it would make sense for the city/Singer/neighborhood to partner with the hospital and construct a garage on the surface lot on 22nd so it could service both 21st and 23rd.

as for the architecture, don't kid yourself, it looks like a parking garage from the 70's fancified with a little glass. the immediate neighbor is going to have to deal with that solid brick wall baking in the summer sun. a little soft-scaping might help. ultimately, there's not much you can do to a parking garage to make it pleasant, but if you have more space you can atleast hide the cars behind retail. i just don't think this is the place for a garage.

Max Rockbin

I think a little more directness on both sides would help.
Against the Parking Lot:
You know you don't really care about the historic significance of the house.
You oppose the parking lot (very legitimately!) because it means more, larger development on 23rd.

Those for the parking lot:
Don't live in the neighborhood
Don't know about the low utilization of existing off street parking.
Favor more (bigger) development on 23rd.

This parking debate is a proxy war for the real question: Do we want bigger development on 23rd?

Brian Libby

Max,

I think your summary is close but slightly off. I think big development has already come to 23rd. The garage is a proxy war, I'd say, for asking whether we're ready to acknowledge it.

Double J

a large portion of 23rd should become a pedestrian mall with several of these large but unobtrusive parking structures at either end (conway properies on 21st possibly even). Right now 23rd is caught between worlds and it needs to decide if it will remain a snarl or a stroll.

Double J

Also 23rd has way more use than any street in Eugene. It has the European density to make pedestrian only zones work. Also, people jam the sidewalks of 23rd even when it's raining.

stacy

Weighing in here on what is some really good dialog + given me much thought:

*I agree w/the "if you build it, they will come" comments.
This is not going to reduce congestion on the streets, rather it will encourage increased traffic to the area. It just gives them a better chance @ getting a parking spot. I know, because I personally have decided against going to the area for traffic + parking alone. But if it were easier to park, well hey...what's to discourage people? We might also think a little bit more about consolidated trips to high-congestion areas if it's a little harder to find parking. I personally wait until there are a number of stores/errands in the area before venturing there. It's just to chaotic + honestly, stressful of an area to otherwise make several trips.

*Closing 23rd to cars + carrying the trolley line through the area or the pedestrian center that skodt mentioned seems to be most pedestrian-friendly + sends a clear message of finding alternate ways of traveling to the area other than your car. Let's encourage pedestrian centers that have worked so well for Europe + the rest of the world for so long! This is their community. They WALK to stores, restaurants, theaters, etc. We should respect their desire to maintain it in such a manner.

*On a personal note, I have driven to the area, as well as pedestrian means of walking + via bicycle. The level of traffic in this area is alarming + frankly, a bit scary while on bike as most people are distracted + pre-occupied looking for street parking on narrow streets.

*The destruction of a historic property for what is, quite frankly + was said before, a "fancified" parking structure w/a little bit of glass (I admire Holst's designs, but don't know what is appealing about this design) is a shame. While it is a property owners' rights to make these decisions, it appears hasty + w/disregard to the historic nature of the neighborhood.

*I would be opposed to the structure if I were a resident in close proximity because: a) I'm not so certain that it would reduce the number of cars parked in front of houses. b) As mentioned before, it does not solve the issue of trash; c) Lastly, something that has not been mentioned - direct increased pollution levels for the houses immediately adjacent to the parking structure. While I am certain there are already high levels from cars that are passing by looking for parking, there would be an increase for these residents just by the sheer number of cars entering + exiting the structure. I would be curious to know if there are any statistics regarding pollution levels + parking structures.

It's not that something doesn't need to be done about how it is now. I just don't think a parking structure is the answer.

stacy

Here here, Double J!
I vote stroll not snarl!
Pedestrian avenues are so much more community-oriented, inviting, social + diverse. Read: Sustainable. No matter the transit method of the next 100+ years, there will always be pedestrians. Walking.
Parking garage just screams more of a "mall-type" atmosphere.

Joshua Cohen

The notion that all Northwest District residents oppose a new garage is not correct. I lived near NW 20th & Irving from 2002-2007, and was in favor of building the Irving St Garage. Here's why:

If you look beyond the half-truths published each month in the Northwest Examiner and learn about the history of the situation, you'll find that a multi-year effort by the Bureau of Planning culminated in a Northwest District Plan which was adopted by city council in 2003. This plan includes detailed goals (summarized below) to address parking and traffic problems.

1. Manage the Supply of On-street Parking (with permit & meter system)
2. Establish a Transportation Management Association
3. Increase the Supply of Off-Street Parking
4. Make Efficient Use of Existing Off-street Parking
5. Protect Neighborhood Character and Promote Better Design

Improving the parking & traffic situation in Northwest (yes it's bad) is not as simple as building a single garage, or adding some traffic calming features. Significant efforts must be made on all five fronts. For example, off-street parking lots & garages are poorly utilized when on-street parking in the area remains free.

I remain in favor of building the Irving St Garage, because it is part of an carefully thought out plan to improve the traffic & parking situation. Unfortunately, the majority of efforts by neighborhood leaders during the past five years have been consumed by the fight over a single location: NW 23rd & Irving. Meanwhile the rest of the neighborhood suffers from the lack of progress. I think it's time for City Commissioners to end this "proxy war" and provide leadership towards implementing the District Plan.

h-lin

"There's parking under Pottery Barn? Why didn't anyone tell me?!"

The NWDA objected to signage.

I'm not a big fan of parking garages or the automobile. Anything we can do to encourage mass transit and pedestiality is great.

I've also followed the NWDA's forays into grass-roots planning and I'm not impressed. This cabal of manipulative, self-important, entitled, myopic, elitists is a worrisome mole on the face of "public process".

That said, said process needs to run its course, of course. And the Association's position must be respected and fairly weighed against the neighborhood's needs and wants.

And on that note, has anyone asked whether the adjacent house-like structures should be demolished? The clock is ticking on those properties, too.

Richard

I think this ongoing controversy over the parking structure raises many important larger issues, and I strongly side with the neighborhood in their opposition--both for some of the immediately practical reasons mentioned above and as a matter of much larger principle.

The NW neighborhood in question is probably Portland's most successful by many standards--densely populated, combines residences and retail and jobs, well-served by mass transit, conducive to walking. It's the type of neighborhood where, for many, it's truly possible to live almost entirely within the neighborhood and do so without a car. Anything, such as the proliferation of parking structures, that encourages an orientation of the neighborhood toward those who live outside it rather than in it is, in my opinion, a huge mistake.

Yes, this outward focus has already started with the location within the neighborhood of large chain stores that depend for their success on drawing occasional customers but drawing them in large numbers. But it's important to try to prevent this sort of business from proliferating, and opposing large parking structures that make it ultra-convenient for people to come to NW to buy large items (as at Pottery Barn) is one way of doing so.

It's not that I'm dead-set against destination stores like Pottery Barn per se, it's mainly that I don't think they're healthy for a neighborhood. They tend to raise retail landlords' expectations of what's possible to charge for rent, and they therefore tend to drive out the smaller businesses that primarily serve neighborhood residents. If the types of businesses the operate in northwest (aside from Good Samaritan and other medical offices) primarily serve the neighborhood, or can survive by primarily serving the neighborhood, then parking and traffic cease to be such pressing issues.

Which brings me to another point raised by your frustration with the parking issue, Brian. What's the big deal about parking on Quimby when you want to go some place on Everett? Or, for god's sake, why are you even driving to NW Portland when you could take a bus or, perhaps in some cases, go to an equivalent place closer to home? I mean, you live in close-in southeast, right?

I'm not trying to pick on you, personally, Brian (you seem like a nice guy, and I've long appreciated your blog), but your attitude seems to me to be emblematic of a sense of entitlement that is virtually pervasive in this country, even in "green" Portland: "I should be able to drive my car anywhere I want, whenever I want and park right next to my specific destination. I will only walk or use mass transit if doing so is faster than using my car." This is a very unreasonable, impractical and destructive way of thinking. We need to get over it, and preserving NW for its residents—rather than tailoring it to the far-flung shoppers of the Portland-Vancouver metro area—can provide a model for an alternative to our extraordinarily wasteful dependence on cars.

Let's not try to solve the traffic problems of NW Portland by making it easier to drive there. That makes no sense at all.

(By the way, I live in Southeast, in case you think I'm just trying to protect my personal turf. When I go to Northwest, I allow time to take the bus.)

Archy

lets demolish the identical trio of pottery barn/ william sonoma/ restoration hardware and build a park. this would reduce a significant amount of traffic (middle aged woman driving in from lake oswego to buy useless crap) so we wouldnt need a parking garage.

ws

I'm encouraged by the comments of people that support efforts to diminish the negative impact this parking garage stands to have on the neighborhood, or keep it out entirely. A neighborhood should be entitled to be a neighborhood. Beyond a certain point, business can really threaten this one's ability to do that. How much income is this neighborhood expected to generate for business owners before people realize 'enough is enough'?

On some days, there's already too many people trudging up and down 23rd's street looking at the same merchandise they see at the mall. Those narrow sidewalks aren't intended for Washing Square/Bridgeport numbers of people.

Years back, I enjoyed the neighborhood quite a lot; park on King's Hill or Jefferson, coffee on 23rd, walking off 23rd to look at the residences and peoples gardens, down to 21st to see what was going on there, maybe go to a movie at Cinema 21. If I'd had the pocket change, I'd have patronized restaurants there more than I did. It's a beautiful little neighborhood with big trees, great but modest houses, streets whose traffic is easy to manage on foot without a signal at every intersection. That's a unique and valuable thing.

Today, I rarely go there. Too many people, too many regular panhandlers (even though they're sufficiently well mannered). Too much unnecessary boutique goods that, even if I had the money, I'd really not be inclined to buy.

This business of tapping into the idea of having 23rd be a regional retail draw is o.k. to a point, but it seems it may have reached a saturation point.

DE

Here here Richard! I am a new neighborhood resident, and prior to moving here I often arrived by transit or bike, and occasionally struggled for parking as a driver. Then as now I believed that the neighborhood is best because it is NOT easily accessible for the mall crowd; those who expect easy auto access in and out. If you want that, go to a mall. If we redesign 23rd and 21st to accommodate higher volumes of traffic, then people who now refuse to fight for parking will be more likely to come, and the retail offerings will adjust accordingly to reflect a shopping mall. Developers in this area are surely hearing from higher-rent paying prospective tenants that they would love to be on 23rd, but there's not enough parking for their formula. Let's not give it to them. Brian, if you want to avoid the hassles you describe, don't bring large objects that require storage while you shop.

goose

good points DE and Richard about big vs. little retailers. we already lost music millenium. i tell you there's nothing sadder than moving back to town and seeing that sign turned off for good.

i don't think turning 23rd into a pedestrian mall is the answer either. pedestrian malls more often than not become dead zones; atleast here in america, few have been successful. in european countries there are many bustling commercial streets that are shared by peds, bikes, scooters and cars. the difference is they have smaller cars and fewer of them so they are generally less of a problem than they are here. at the very least you would have to allow a streetcar and buses through there. it would actually be pretty cool to restore the trolley tracks and cobblestones along that street. i feel really off-topic but i'm posting anyway.

Allan Classen

Northwest Porltand has a shortage of free parking. It does not have a shortage of paid parking. The paid lot behind Pizzicato almost never fills up, and a Christmas season experiment with valet parking showed its capacity can be virtually doubled when needed. Let's make efficient use of what we have before bulldozing homes and turning neighborhood streets into the subsidiary parking area for retailers.

PG

Whether he exactly meant to or not, Singer, the initiator of modern day 23rd, set in motion an evolution away from neighborhood and towards destination. That evolution has and will likely continue to exert negative pressure on more and more of the small businesses and strictly local resources Richard is talking about.

We can't let ourselves be confused about what the exit of Music Millennium exemplifies: it was because of rent increasing to the level that can most typically be met by a business with national-level assets and a customer base that comes from outside the neighborhood. Enough of those people will want to come by private car (as they do now) that to see the issue in terms of how/whether to "discourage" or "encourage" the automobile is too academic.

Comparisons to European streets likewise are useless - those streets are full of Europeans who are accustomed to a level of inconvenience and public obligation that is absolutely alien to how life is perceived by Americans - even us Portlanders!
So if we de-car this strip or not, the evolution of the commerce there assures us of demand for parking and the garage will have to be built. It's only a matter of time before the neighborhood acquiesces and accepts some location or other. Individuals' tricks and secrets aside, the perception that parking in NW is a total nightmare is widespread.

I suggest that the thing to do in the short term is to meter that street. There are definitely blocks on 23rd that nobody really needs to park a car at for more than 30 minutes during the day. If the parking lot is down on Quimby and the street slots are unmetered, people are still going to troll around for a spot next to the restaurant or shop they drove in to go to. That's gas, and fumes. Acting like Americans are going to forego their "discouraged" cars and/or park a half a mile from where they want to go is pure Pollyanna. Besides, few-to-none of these business-owners actually want to be out of car-range, and what the business owners on 23rd want, they get - that's why the street is such a wreck, remember, the business owners didn't want to close it even to repair it.

I think meters are the best idea for the "successful" streets like 23rd or Hawthorne. These places are commercially what downtown used to be - destinations. At some level they have to be seen as equal to downtown. Lots of people drive there, they do their thing, and they leave, and those who want to see such issues as this in terms of being for or against "the automobile" ought to expect that, Americans being the selfish little pigs we pretty much are, this will probably be the case even after cars stop being run on fossil fuels.

Mike Ryerson

Bottom line:
There are plenty of pay-to-park spaces available near the site of the proposed garage. Why on earth do we need anymore at the cost of homes?
The spaces on the street will continue to be full if they built 10 garages charging $4 an hour. Shoppers want free parking, not pay-to-park. Can it be anymore obvious?

Nikos

"Americans being the selfish little pigs we pretty much are, this will probably be the case even after cars stop being run on fossil fuels."

this little piggy goes to market, next toe....this little piggy stays home, next toe...this little piggy has roast beef(from City Market), next toe...this little piggy has none, baby toe...and this little piggy cried wee wee wee all the way home to Beaverton on their SUV

k.d

This neighborhood is being terribly selfish, its a part of a community called Portland, Oregon - not one unto itself.

I say we pull up the expensive street car tracks we all paid for to aid it and pick a more worthy neighborhood for our valuable attention.

This isn't a neighborhood which wants to be a vibrant part of the city, but rather appears to desire to be a gated community. It proved that when it ran Apple out on a rail, and now there sits that empty building with nothing in it - and every bit the eyesore the neighborhood association appears to have preferred.

How much more can we as a city bend over backward for these people? Every sort of review was provided and every concern of theirs heeded and still they are unsatisfied and seem perfectly happy to waste more of our dollars arguing over this issue.

eenie

I think Richard sums up the situation nicely.

Seems like a combination of metered parking and permit parking for residents is called for. I grew up in the Boston area, where this was common; haven't seen it as much on the west coast for some reason.

Richard

"This neighborhood is being terribly selfish, its a part of a community called Portland, Oregon - not one unto itself."

You don't make any case for why the neighborhood needs a paid parking garage, or why the wishes of the neighborhood's leading developer (Singer) should prevail over those of the residents. You don't address the convincing case being made that there's already ample parking in the neigborhood in the form of pay-for lots, but the problem is that people expect to park for free. You apparently don't care to think about whether certain kinds of retail establishments are even appropriate for the neighborhood and whether they should be encouraged to proliferate by offering them suburban-style parking amenities. You make the absurd claim that the neighborhood wants to be a "gated community," when it would be far more accurate to say that it simply does not want to become a shopping mall parking lot.

You sound like someone who was forced to circle the block a few times and be careful of pedestrians the last time you drove to Williams Sonoma on 23rd, and you're now eager to assert your right as an American to complete auto-convenience.

And you're accusing the NW neighborhood of being selfish?

k.d

"You sound like someone who was forced to circle the block a few times and be careful of pedestrians the last time you drove to Williams Sonoma on 23rd, and you're now eager to assert your right as an American to complete auto-convenience."

Actually I'm more apt to take the street car, which charges a fare in your area because - as I recall - residents in NW feared we'd all park in their neighborhoods to commute to downtown.

This has reached the boiling point because the neighborhood association got every demand it sought on the parking lot - then turned around and fought against it again.

Portlander's don't want a mall on 23rd.

But we would like the convenience that the neighborhood residents enjoy in being able to meet up with friends for dinner and spending time being a part of the street scene too.

I could be wrong, but it just seems like that area's becoming an exclusive enclave that does what it can to keep the rest of us out.

Just doesn't seem very Portland to me anymore.

DE

All we need is more parking, an Apple store and a Victoria's Secret. Then will it seem more "portland?"

Gimme a break.

Richard

"But we would like the convenience that the neighborhood residents enjoy in being able to meet up with friends for dinner and spending time being a part of the street scene too."

It's entirely unreasonable of you or me, as people who live outside the NW neighborhood, to expect the same level of convenience the residents of the neighborhood enjoy in patronizing neighborhood businesses.

You said you've taken the streetcar to NW. It sounds, then, like you've figured out how to solve the NW parking "problem." Aside from downtown, no part of Portland is better served by mass transit than NW.

If you mean to imply that your time is so precious that you're no longer willing to use mass transit to go to NW, and would rather homes be torn down and a parking garage be built in the neighborhood on the off chance that it might make it slightly more convenient for you to park your car nearer the restaurant or shop or street scene you want to take advantages of, then I'll draw my own conclusions about who's got a selfishness problem. It's not the NW residents who don't want another parking garage in their neighborhood.

dave

For those of you who think the high rent of 23rd drove Music Millennium out of business, ever heard of an iPod? Digital downloads is killing off most music stores.

Robert

I don't think there needs to be another pay lot, but opinions like Allan Classen's(as expressed in his rag, not here) make me want one just to spite him.
Have you read this hacks architectural criticism articles? He thinks the Oil Can Henry's is the best building in NW!?!?! He is the one who is holding up national cookie cutter chains as the example for an ideal NW Portland!
He's a big reason the opposition looks "psycho".

PG

Re: Music Millennium - if it had nothing to do with Singer, the building's - and 23rd's - owner, jacking up the rent, then how do we explain the fact that their Burnside store didn't fail? Downloaders effect every store - obviously the last straw had to do with their rent on 23rd getting up to $13,000/month.
The commenter above's idea that MM was simply a victim of the times was a popular one when they closed that store - their landlord, as much as anyone, made sure of that.

In WW:

"Both men ascribe the escalation in rent, as well as the changing face of Northwest 23rd, to the appearance of large national retailers such as Williams-Sonoma and the Gap. First surfacing on 23rd and West Burnside, the large chain stores have been slowly creeping north. The latest newcomer is Pottery Barn Bed and Bath, which opened between its sister stores, Pottery Barn and Williams-Sonoma, over Thanksgiving.

"The man responsible for much of this change is Dick Singer, who owns real estate up and down 23rd. He also owns the building that Music Millennium occupies.

"'Dick Singer did bring up the street with local businesses, to his credit,' Currier says. But both Currier and Ryerson think Singer has a bigger game plan, which entails edging smaller businesses out of the neighborhood to make way for national chains.

"'That's totally wrong,' says Singer. whose family has owned property in the neighborhood since the 1930s. 'Music Millennium is not suffering from anything more than my daughters, her friends, young people downloading music.'"

http://wweek.com/editorial/3336/9257/

(I see no reason to believe what Singer says about the street he owns more than what Terry Currier says. And it's a reasonable conclusion to assume that NW 23rd evolves mostly in line with the requirements of Singer's wealth. If parking garages mean higher rents on his properties, then parking garages are going to be built no matter what, and naive car-free fantasies will remain just that.)

ws

The Historic Landmark Commission meets on Monday to decide on this thing. Many of you probably noted the Oregonian's editorial in Friday's paper. The O supports approval of the garage.

PG, you're smart about factors driving demand for this garage, but you appear to very easily surrender to that demand. That's very unfortunate. That Richard Singer carries weight allowing him to apply pressure in certain ways, does not necessarily make him right about what's best for this neighborhood.

From the standpoint of a visitor-customer to the neighborhood, I just don't see the point of chain stores being on that street. Nothing about them is unique, and 'unique' has been one of the key qualities that has made this neighborhood so charming. There are malls in all directions, not that far away, where people can go and find merchandise chains offer.

I hope more people will realize and stand up for what should a recognized priority for 23rd: sustaining it as an excellent example of residential/retail livability. The tourist draw angle is o.k. to a point, but it shouldn't be developed to the extent that this neighborhood's unique livability is consumed by it.

k.d

Residents clearly want cars driving around block by block searching for parking, wasting gas resources and piling more smog into the neighborhood.

They claim we want 'American Auto Convenience' - but really we're just looking for enough parking to support the businesses on 23rd, and the ability to meet up with friends and family for dinner; on time.

And if a respected company like Apple picks 23rd as its Portland presence, and works hard to meet the requirements of the street scene - we expect the neighborhood to work well with others so that we can have that additional tax revenue to keep our city moving forward, and the additional jobs it would bring to our citizens.

But the site that Apple proposed is now an eyesore to the city and the jobs that it would have brought Portland aren't here, and the cars it would have taken off the road are driving over the hill back and forth to Washington Square.

The Oregonian editorial said it best though, "And yet there was a time -- and not so very long ago -- when much of this Victorian-era enclave was so run down it seemed few living there could actually afford a horseless carriage."

How quickly those who've profited from the improved neighborhood forget, and instead of working to be good citizens and accept a solution they pushed for (reducing the number of spaces, and hacking the architecture) - they now seem only capable of throwing tantrums and castigating anyone who's willing to work with them.

Pity.

Sean Casey

I agree with Mike Ryerson.

In a general sense, there is no shortage of parking... Just a shortage of parking IN FRONT OF THE PLACE YOU WANT TO VISIT.

No surprise there.

Unless you're elderly, handicapped or have a large delivery, you don't NEED to park right in front of your desination.

Want to visit 23rd (or some other high density area)? Park six or eight blocks away.

Six blocks too far for you to walk? Probably means you'd benefit the most by doing so...

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