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Commissioners Fritz, Novick Team up to Look For a Solution to Save NE Portland’s Historic Rayworth House

(Portland, OR) – Commissioners Amanda Fritz (Development Services, Parks & Recreation) and Steve Novick (Transportation) announce a new timeline for the preservation of the historic Rayworth House. 

The City offers special thanks to neighborhood advocates Roy and Kim Fox, who committed to saving the home, located on Albina St., and have made a significant financial and emotional investment in preserving the historic structure.  Further, the City offers special thanks to developer Andre Koshuba who has graciously granted several needed extensions to avoid demolishing the house. Commissioners Fritz and Novick are also appreciative of the advocacy of Boise Neighborhood Association.

Complications arose yesterday (Thursday, September 5) when City staff learned that the height of the home during its cross-town move was actually three and a half feet taller than previously indicated in the permitting process. This information, coming less than 72 hours before the home was to be moved, raised significant concerns over vital infrastructure issues such as traffic impacts, utility/electric and communication line impacts, and on impacts to both private and City-owned trees.

This change necessitates a new route for a potential move and new permits. Property developer Andre Koshuba has agreed to a one-week delay of demolition to allow for additional route planning.

Fritz, Novick and City staff will continue to work with all parties to find a new or modified route that minimizes impacts on traffic, gives advance notification of impacted neighbors, and includes a thorough assessment of utility/electric and communication line issues and the structural and safety-related impacts to both privately- and City-owned trees.

“Everyone wants to make this move happen, in a manner that protects neighbors and the house,” says City Commissioner Amanda Fritz. “I very much appreciate the efforts of Mr. and Mrs. Fox, of Mr. Koshuba, of Pat Brady of Emmert International, and everyone involved.”

Commissioner Novick praised the work of staff from the several bureaus to work together to try to find a way to relocate the house while protecting infrastructure the community depends on every day.

“The Transportation Bureau has to protect the trees, power lines and traffic signals that are in the public right-of-way,” Novick said. “I’m glad we may be able to find a way to preserve this house, which reflects the character and charm of Portland. But all parties need to continue to work together to protect the utilities and other infrastructure that are essential to our quality of life.”

The home is believed to have been built in 1890 by Edwin Rayworth. It went into foreclosure in 2010.

Koshuba, the developer, then bought it and plans to replace it with a pair of homes on the Rayworth property’s existing site.

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Mark Ross - Public Information Officer Portland Parks & Recreation 503-823-5300 (office); 503-823-6634 (cell) Mark.ross@portlandoregon.gov Healthy Parks, Healthy Portland portlandparks.org Amanda Fritz, Commissioner | Mike Abbaté, Director

Dylan Rivera Media Relations | Portland Bureau of Transportation t: (503) 823-3723 | c: (503) 577-7534 dylan.rivera@portlandoregon.gov website | twitter | publicalerts