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October 19th, 2011 WW Editorial Staff | Letters to the Editor
 

Inbox: Invisible East Portland

     
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This article is great [“The Other Portland,” WW, Oct. 12, 2011]! As a new PDX resident, I’ve found it hard to get through the onslaught of hipster culture, admittedly in which I sometimes partake; but I definitely have felt like there absolutely is more going on in the city, that people are being excluded from the dominant young culture.

I want to know more about what exactly “investment” in East PDX would look like. Does that mean gentrification and a pushing out of current communities, making it “safer” for middle-class white people to move in? There’s more to investment than New Seasons and bike lanes. The discussion about transportation and access to groceries was great; it will be important to see how the communities themselves define their interests and needs in terms of investment, and if a new mayor can listen and respond accordingly.

“Whit”


Yes, it is getting worse. I lived in far East County when I first moved to Portland in 1981.

I recently had to spend a few weeks commuting to Gresham along Powell and Division. I was SHOCKED. While I have marveled at the changes around Portland, the invention of the Pearl, the makeovers given to Mississippi, Alberta, North and Northeast, East County is the only area that looks worse than 20 years ago.

Let me qualify my comment somewhat: The area I am speaking of is bordered by East 102nd, Powell, Gresham city limits and Glisan. Especially along the major thoroughfares, it looks like a ghetto. And this was not always the case. 

—“Firstpost”


Summer before 2nd grade (1987) my parents bought a house on 192nd between Glisan and Halsey (Rockwood district). It was a well-manicured, clean middle-class neighborhood. It was glorious, I remember feeling “rich.” Everyone’s lawn was green and not one house in sight had so much as a tire in their yard. Most had semi-new vehicles in their driveways. No one had a pitbull. The MAX line had just opened up a year prior.... I literally watched the Eastside crumble (Rockwood in particular) in a few short years. I moved to West Linn/Wilsonville in 1993. It’s sad to drive out there and see how bad it is now.... Stupid MAX...Milwaukie is next. *sigh* It’s where I live now :(

—“From Rock-hood”


Journalism like this is why I tell people that WW is the best in the city. 

I live between 82nd and I-205 (Lents). It isn’t as bad as east of I-205 (which I didn’t realize until this article was still considered Portland), but it sure as hell isn’t part of the “party,” either. I wish some of the Pearl’s URA [Urban Redevelopment Authority]  money could be thrown toward our abandoned business area.

—“Thanks”


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