Applications Open for New Play Streets Program!

Have you heard about the new Play Streets program from PBOT? It aims to transform neighborhood streets into recurring pop-up community hubs for socializing, play and physical activity. Events might include games, cultural performances, kids demonstrations and so much more. The best part is that the city can provide up to $5000 in funding, training and access to city amenities like the mobile library truck. Learn more at PBOT Play Streets. If you and some neighbors are interested, the SNA can help! We, through our relationship with SE Uplift, can act as your non-profit fiscal sponsor and help with coordination and outreach. Please contact us ASAP at [email protected]. Applications are due January 31st, so don’t wait!

December 14, 2023 SNA Board Meeting

The SNA’s December Board Meeting will be held Thursday, December 14, 2023, at 7:00pm.

Meeting is open to the public. 

Meeting Agenda. Times are approximate. Agenda items are subject to change.

This meeting will be held in person at SE Uplift (3534 SE Main St, Portland, OR 97214) and virtually at


News from the President

Happy Holidays, Sunnyside! I hope this special time of year finds your family full of light, warmth and joy. In that spirit, please come out to our neighborhood’s celebration of the season at the annual festival of lights on Peacock Lane! The displays will be up from December 15th–31st. The first weekend is car-free. The cocoa booth will be serving up warm drinks and there will be plenty of cheer to go around.

Onto the SNA news…

We had a busy November General Meeting! First, we had representatives from both of the Portland Police Bureau precincts that serve Sunnyside. Here are a few things that we learned: the Traffic Enforcement division is back; there are continuing staffing challenges (there’s a backlog of students at the Police Academy in Salem); and the East Precinct’s
very successful Stolen Vehicle Operation has led to a 30% reduction in stolen vehicles so far in 2023. (For data on crime stats, police staffing numbers, etc. see It has been a long time since we had police officers join us and we are excited to
renew our relationship with PPB. We
will have regular updates from them at General meetings going forward and hope to bring in other public safety agencies as well, such as Portland Street Response, so that we can all be informed on the best ways to keep ourselves and our neighborhood safe.

Next was a presentation from Multnomah County and their architecture team about the exciting changes that will be coming to the Belmont Library. The expansion will more than double existing space and provide new opportunities for learning and engagement. You can read more about the plans in Hannah’s write-up below.

Finally we heard from Cascadia Action about the fight to clean the air that we all breathe here in Portland. Unfiltered diesel engines and industrial pollution make Portland’s air dangerous, particularly for people with asthma or other respiratory problems. Because of our proximity to the river and the prevailing west-to-east winds, Sunnyside is right on the edge of some of the worst of this particulate pollution. Cascadia Action is asking us to sign on to over 10 letters drafted by other neighborhood associations and civic groups to fight those responsible for this pollution and to bring cleaner air to everyone. The Board will be voting on support for these letters at our December Board meeting, so please be in touch ([email protected]) if you have opinions on this issue. We will also appoint a liaison to Cascadia Action to help in this cause.

On the continuing efforts to make Cesar E. Chavez safer for pedestrians and transit users, there have been a couple of developments. First, the traffic diverter that I mentioned last month was installed at Chavez and Taylor in mid-November. This will prevent left-hand turns at this intersection – a leading cause of crashes at that spot. Second, after hearing from Sunnyside resident Mary-Ann Schwab about the inadequate time provided by the walk signal at Taylor (five seconds of solid light, 10 additional of blinking), the SNA reached out to PBOT to inquire about extending those signals, to better ensure safe crossing for those who may not move as quickly across the wide, busy street. PBOT reported back that the signal call-boxes at both Taylor and Main are slated to be upgraded this winter. In light of community feedback and understanding the constituencies for these lights (e.g. bus and library users) PBOT will examine the light timings during the replacement project with an eye towards increasing the walk time. While this is not a done deal and we will have to continue to hold PBOT to its Vision Zero commitments, it is a positive “signal” for pedestrian safety. I’ll keep everyone posted as further developments occur.

That’s it for now. Have a wonderful holiday season and we will see you in 2024!

Winter Clothing Drive Dec 9th

We will have our fourth annual Winter Clothing Drive for our houseless neighbors on Saturday, December 9th in the basement of the Sunnyside Methodist Church at 35th and Yamhill. Volunteers will be on hand to collect donations from 10 a.m.–1 p.m.

We especially need clothing donations for all genders of pants, shirts, sweaters, coats, new underwear, socks, shoes, hats and gloves as well as sleeping bags, tents and other warm layers. We are not accepting children’s or formal clothing.

If you are not able to drop off your donations on December 9th, we can arrange a pickup. Please contact Diana Deumling at [email protected]. Thank you!

Belmont Library Renovation Update

Did you know that the Multnomah County library system is the fourth busiest in the nation? Or that the Belmont Library has more items on hold than any other branch in the county (3,000 at any one time)? I didn’t. We learned this and more at our November General meeting. Katie O’Dell, Multnomah County Library’s Capital Bond Deputy Director, gave us the big picture on the 2020 bond, which will both modernize the existing library system and help renovate libraries like our beloved Belmont branch. The updates include a centralized sorting center, a technology system called Automated Materials Handling (AMH), and access to more than 1.6 million items. The renovation of the Belmont Branch–which will happen in fall of 2024–will more than double the current library’s size. (There will be a second floor, but the building’s footprint will also get slightly bigger.) The expansion will allow for an increase in the number of materials—in both English and Spanish—and will add additional spaces for people including a teen lounge, an upstairs reading room, more flexible program space and possibly an outdoor terrace. Jeanie Lai, one of the architects from Bora Architects, shared the current sketches (the design is still being hammered out) and said that they are taking cues from the neighborhood, keeping the library at a residential scale. There will be a new entrance (still on the Cesar Chavez Boulevard side of the street, but further north), more bike parking (closer to the building), and a more generous 15-foot right-of-way—with a wider sidewalk and trees planted close to the curb. The community was asked to fill out a survey (812 people responded), and there have been three interactive workshops for the community so far. Check for updates including future public meeting dates.