What's happening now

Formerly the home of Beaumont-Wilshire Neighbors for Responsible Growth, the Portland Land Matters blog explores citywide land-use concerns, such as home demolitions, with the belief that development should create an improvement.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Beaumont Pillage Apartments lives up to the name

Not worth windows: Brutalist, oversize, and
out-of-scale, Wally Remmers's project
goes after the charm of Beaumont Village.
Despite the snow and cold, neighbors came out last weekend for a State of the Neighborhood confab to talk about improving local development. The neighbors who participated represented a wide range of generations and professions; all this expertise and experience brings plenty of skill and enthusiasm to the task of proactively protecting Beaumont-Wilshire and building a better future. I particularly enjoyed hearing one longtime resident talk about the days—only some years ago—when City Council really was an extension of neighborhood activism. People worked together for the same cause of making Portland a great place to live.

Somewhere between the strategizing and the killer salmon skewers hot off the barbecue, we also raised a chunk of money for BWNRG's legal bill for taking neighbors' appeal of Wally Remmers's 4-story 50-unit project on Northeast Fremont to the state Land Use Board of Appeals (LUBA). Thank you to all who showed up and to all who have supported us in the past and still do (click here to donate online).

Meanwhile, we continue to take the story of Remmers's non-code compliant building, and the city's defense of it (at taxpayers' expense), to other neighborhood associations in Northeast. East-siders all have an interest in a functioning Fremont Street, and with no safety or traffic measures promised to mitigate the building's impacts, the thoroughfare will become even more congested and unsafe.

After some weeks of waiting, we finally have a meeting scheduled with Commissioner Fritz and Bureau of Development Services staff—looking forward to it. These folks are instrumental in the course correction.

On Saturday, Feb. 15, filmmakers Greg Baartz-Bowman and George Wolters unveil the movie that chronicles this rogue wave of development. You can watch the trailer here; for the whole thing, trek to the Milwaukie Masonic Lodge and get an eyeful of what's been going down across the city, and what neighbors are doing to counter it. Who knows, maybe you'll even get a glimpse of Wally's World with the faux windows and BWNRG activists.

See you at the movies!

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