One public comment at the July 29th meeting supported the City’s intent to collaborate with private property owners to create publicly accessible parks in the Central Eastside including this space near the Morrison Bridgehead.
On Wednesday, July 29, 2015, Portland City Council voted 4-0 to adopt the SE Quadrant Plan (full video; click on July 29, PM in the left hand navigation bar). Testimony overwhelmingly supported the plan's balance between supporting the growth of the district while reinforcing protections for industrial businesses. Members of the SE Quadrant Stakeholder Advisory Committee, business owners, land owners and representatives from nonprofits spoke about the plan’s strengths and how it could be improved.
Transportation strategies affirmed
The Portland Freight Committee, Bicycle Advisory Committee and the Pedestrian Advisory Committee testified in support of the plan. In addition, several industrial business owners reaffirmed support for both freight and bicycle circulation enhancements proposed by the plan, especially those that reduce conflicts between modes. Some also expressed enthusiasm for the Central Eastside portion of the Green Loop as a safer route for employees and visitors to bike through and to the district.
Land use tools support small businesses and craft manufacturers
The majority of testimony at City Council supported the expansion of the Employment Opportunity Subarea (EOS) throughout the rest of the district. The EOS, which would be expanded from 48 acres to 248 acres, will allow new and emerging industrial sectors such as digital industrial design, software and web design and maintenance, high tech and bioscience development, as well as traditional industrial sectors to co-exist. Although a few testifiers continued to express concern about how much change the EOS may mean for the district, Mayor Charlie Hales stated he was “cautiously optimistic that this is the right set of strategies” for the district that will help to “create more space and, therefore, maybe a little less competition for what's there now."
Final quadrant plan adopted
The SE Quadrant Plan was the last of three quadrant plans to be adopted (by resolution) by City Council in the City’s multi-year effort to update the Central City Plan. Now Bureau of Planning and Sustainability staff will begin folding the policies, implementing actions and zoning proposals from all the quadrant plans and other input into a final document that will be called Central City 2035 (CC2035). A CC2035 Discussion Draft will be released for review in late 2015, followed by a Proposed Draft that will be submitted to the Planning and Sustainability Commission (PSC). The PSC will hold public hearings before a vote to recommend the plan to City Council.