Environmental Services continues to design a project in the southern portion of Sunnyside to install, replace, and upsize approximately 9,000 feet of public sewer pipes. Environmental Services will also build 25 green street planters to manage stormwater runoff from streets, roofs, and parking lots. The sewer and stormwater improvements will increase sewer capacity, manage stormwater more naturally, and reduce the risks of street flooding and sewage releases to homes, businesses, and streets.
Check out the project website to see a map showing the pipe and green street locations, as well as construction methods: www.portland.gov/bes/SunnysideSouth
Construction is not anticipated to start until winter of 2021 at the earliest. Engineers are finishing up the design, and planting plans are being collected from adjacent property owners for the green street planters.
The city plans to use two different methods to construct this project.
- Open trench excavation is the most traditional and most common method of sewer construction. This method consists of excavating down to, and exposing, the existing pipe (if there is one), so that it can be installed, repaired, or replaced. The trench is then backfilled and temporarily paved until the pipe is quality control tested.
- Cured-in-Place Pipe Lining (CIPP) is a trenchless method of sewer construction. It requires little or no digging and significantly less time to complete than other sewer repair methods. CIPP involves inserting a flexible liner inside the existing pipe, inflating the liner, and exposing it to heat or ultraviolet light to “cure,” or harden the liner inside the pipe.
There is more information about these construction methods at www.portlandoregon.gov/bes/methods.
Community Safety & Livability Committee Meeting
During our February meeting, we heard from Oriana Magnera, a member of the Portland Planning and Sustainability Commission as well as the Energy, Climate, and Transportation Program Manager at Verde.The conversation started with an overview of the Shelter to Housing Continuum (S2HC) Project. This project is an update to the City of Portland Zoning code that responds to some of the challenges of locating shelter and low-income housing options by setting specific allowances for a range of shelter and housing types. The conversation covered a broad range of topics, with participants agreeing that the houseless crisis requires an urgent and tangible response that is not fully provided by the zoning code update.
Spot Cleaning on SE 36th at Hawthorne
In early February, an amazing group of volunteers from the Sunnyside Neighborhood Association, Inner Southeast Action Network, Uri from Dairy Hill, Nancy from the Hawthorne Boulevard Business Association and others turned out with shovels, wheelbarrows, and brute strength. Many hands made for light work. With 14 volunteers we got the whole 20 cubic yard dumpster full by 11:30 a.m.
SOLVE Clean up on SE Belmont and Cesar E. Chavez Blvd
Sunnyside residents joined volunteers from across the city to clean up two of our neighborhood’s commercial corridors. Two SOLVE staff members – Dan Daly (program coordinator) and Peter Brewer (founder of Detrash Portland, which has recently become part of SOLVE) – joined the effort to provide their expertise.
We had volunteers from both Sunnyside and outside the neighborhood – with one volunteer coming from as far as the NE Alberta/33rd area. It was quite humbling seeing people come from across town to help us clean up our neighborhood. Walgreens’ manager Claire generously allowed us the use of their property for volunteer check-in and as a collection point. Volunteers split into four groups. Two groups cleaned along both sides of Belmont, and popped onto side streets, from Cesar Chavez Blvd. all the way to 28th. Another two groups cleaned along both sides of Cesar Chavez, including side streets, from Belmont to Hawthorne. In total, volunteers collected about 20 bags of trash!
Digital preparedness on my cell phone
As I look at my iPhone 11, I see what kind of resources I have to keep me up-to-date for emergency response. To begin with, I have my children, my husband and a good friend in Portland listed as emergency contacts on my phone. It’s especially important to have at least one emergency contact be someone out-of-state and to have that person be aware of that role. It’s likely that text messaging will be the best way to communicate, at least for awhile, if the power is knocked out city-wide or state-wide.
In the event of an earthquake or an extended power outage, having one or more power banks is important, as phone batteries drain quickly in the cold. Turning off unnecessary functions like GPS, Bluetooth and WiFi will significantly extend battery life. These are the apps that I have installed on my iPhone: American Red Cross Emergency, American Red Cross First Aid, 211info, FEMA (you can customize your alerts), and the NOAA Weather.
And, finally, when I hear of any weather event that might affect the power in our area, I immediately charge up my phone to 100%.
Sunnyside Piazza, Green New Deal, Air Quality, Clean-ups
The February SNA general meeting kicked off with a discussion on how to organize the painting project for Sunnyside Piazza at the corner of SE 33rd and Yamhill. Recent sewer repair and repaving has completely removed the bright sunflower street painting that was approaching its 20th anniversary last summer. The usually festive project is complicated by the pandemic and has more moving pieces than the painting itself. Those wishing to help can volunteer at pdxstreetart.org/articles-all/sunnyside-piazza.
Rachel Slocum and Mark Darienzo shared a video and led a discussion on the Green New Deal. They reminded neighbors that the 2019 resolution by Rep. Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Markey was neither a bill nor a policy, but rather a proposed framework for dealing with climate change and social justice. The discussion elicited comments about the desirability of electric cars, dealing with the problem of those whose jobs are displaced, and the overwhelming nature of such sweeping federal policy. Many neighbors may be familiar with Tom Friedman’s use of the term “Green New Deal” in 2007, or with the Green party or Sunrise movement. However, many may be surprised by how closely President Biden’s climate policy framework of “standards, investment, and justice” mirrors the GND.
Greg Bourget of Cascadia Climate Action continued the environmental theme with a presentation on local air pollution. Greg notes that Oregon ranks poorly in air quality among U.S. states (and last by some measures) mainly because of lax emission standards. (The good news is that there are no serious air polluters in Sunnyside.)
Finally, the SNA took up the issue of dumpsite clean-ups. Vincent Dawans, one of those involved in many recent neighborhood clean-ups, was asked by the board to pursue a grant from SE Uplift to defray the costs of trash disposal. Many thanks to Vincent and all the other neighbors helping each other during this trying time. I hope to see you all at the March meeting. Stay safe.
The SNA Community Safety & Livability Committee is now known as the SNA Community Care Committee–SNACC!
Bring a snack to SNACC and join us to talk with Andy Miller, Executive Director of Human Solutions. Human Solutions is a nonprofit corporation that provides affordable housing, employment development and safety net services to ensure that low-income families have the tools and resources they need to build a pathway out of poverty and homelessness.
March. 18, 2021 . 6:30-8:00pm
Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81107561033?pwd=cDlyZVdMKzl0ZnVtUTZSSklXVXY1dz09