Commissioner Amanda Fritz will host ribbon cutting on Veterans Day at 2:30
Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz will join veterans and Portland Commission on Disability (PCOD) members on Veterans Day, November 11, at a 2:30 pm ribbon-cutting ceremony to mark reopening the USS Oregon Memorial in Portland’s Waterfront Park. The memorial has been closed off during the year while improvements were being made to enhance access to the site that commemorates those who served during World War II.
Portland Parks and Recreation (PP&R) has completed the project that improved access to and throughout the area with an ADA-accessible ramp and walkways. The new surfaces can be easily used by people with disabilities and will serve to increase access to the popular site.
“Without the ramp and accessibility improvements that have been made to the USS Oregon Memorial, I was restricted to seeing it from a distance,” commented Travis Herseim, Army veteran and service officer with the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Department of Oregon. “That forced me to be one of the outside, looking-in people. Now I, and other individuals with disabilities, can right up to the memorial and be part of regular society. Being included in the things that society takes for granted means a lot to those who can’t take movement and mobility for granted anymore.”
PCOD asked Commissioner Fritz to address the accessibility issues at the memorial when she was assigned to lead PP&R last June. “It was highly meaningful to me that one of my first actions as Parks Commissioner carried on my previous work with the Office of Equity and Human Rights and the Commission on Disability,” said Commissioner Fritz. “We are thankful for Commissioner Fritz’s strong support for this project and pleased with the speed and attention given to this project by the Parks Bureau,” said Joe VanderVeer, Chairman of the Commission on Disability. “We appreciate the participation of the veteran community, as well, in moving this project forward.”
The project work includes an ADA-accessible ramp and walkways on the north and south sides of the memorial, as well as some new landscaping features. Additional signage to improve accessibility for people experiencing visual disabilities will be added before the project is deemed complete. The USS Oregon Memorial is located in Portland Parks & Recreation Waterfront Park between SW Pine and Oak.
For more information, call 503-823-5300 or visit portlandparks.org.
See video of the event here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EdA22qi0A8I