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The City of Portland, Oregon

Nick Fish (In Memoriam)

City of Portland Commissioner

phone: 503-823-3589

Email: nick@portlandoregon.gov

1221 S.W. 4th, Room 240, Portland, OR 97204

Director Park opens with a bang

Commissioner Fish cut the ribbon on Director Park last night - ten years in the making!

October 28, 2009

Over ten years ago, Mayor Vera Katz envisioned a downtown district that connected the North and South Park Blocks and complemented Pioneer Courthouse Square. Yesterday, Nick cut the ribbon on Director Park, which achieves that vision and more.

Director Park is a model of public-private partnerships, led by an all-star team of architects, designers, City employees, and private donors. Portlanders Tom Moyer and Jordan Schnitzer together donated millions to the project, not to mention the land the park was built on; the Zimmer Gunsul Frasca architectural firm designed the space; Zari Santner and her Parks Bureau employees managed the project; a Citizens Advisory Committee ensured that the park will serve Porlanders for generations; and the Portland Development Commission provided financing and support in this downtown revitalization project.

The Director Park 'piazza' offers movable furniture, Violetta restaurant, an on-site park attendant, a host of programmed events, Teachers Fountain, and simple space for relaxing with friends and loved ones.

Visiting Portland more than 100 years ago, John Olmsted wrote, "It is becoming more clearly realized that every inhabitant owes to his or her city certain duties. Among them is that of making the city more beautiful to live and work in. And while there are many things which may contribute to the beauty of a great city, one of the greatest is a comprehensive system of parks and parkways."

With Director Park, we celebrate an extraordinary new addition to Portland's system of parks.

Read Nick's comments from the opening here.

Thanks to Bryan Aptekar of the Parks Bureau for the photos!

Classical Chinese Garden spotlights chrysanthemums in upcoming exhibit

October 29, 2009

The Portland Classical Chinese Garden will present a variety of events exploring chrysanthemums, or Ju Hua, as they're known in China, beginning Monday, November 2nd. The run includes lectures on chrysanthemums in Chinese medicine, Asian-inspired floral arrangements, and an "Ask an Expert" session to wrap up on the 8th.

Prize-winning flowers from the Portland Chrysanthemum Society will be displayed around the Garden, and in addition to the lectures, the Garden is offering family activities, including bookmark making, as well.

Thanks to Flickr user jfh686 for the beautiful photo.

Historic steam locomotives move closer to a permanent home

October 29, 2009

City Council voted Wednesday to approve the Oregon Rail Heritage Foundation's (ORHF) plan to purchase land in the OMSI district along the east bank of the Willamette River for construction of a new facility.

The facility will provide a space for ORHF to restore and house the three historic steam locomotives it owns - the Spokane, Portland & Seattle 700; the Southern Pacific 4449; and the Oregon Railway & Navigation 197 - and which are currently under the stewardship of the Parks Bureau.

ORHF Founding President Laurel Lyon, President Doyle McCormack, and Board members Ed Immel, Phil Selinger, and John Frazee have been instrumental in ORHF's work to maintain these trains and to raise the profile of Oregon's rail heritage.

The trains are now at the Brooklyn Roundhouse, just north of Union Station in downtown Portland. Before arriving there in 1974, the trains spent 16 years in Oaks Park after being given to the City in 1958.

The new facility, part of a comprehensive plan for the OMSI district property which includes educational, retail, and tourist facilities, will also offer the general public access to the trains for the first time. 

Thanks to flickr user Noel Zia Lee for the great shot of the Holiday Express!

Nick wins a SCRAPPY!

October 30, 2009

Nick was honored with a SCRAPPY for his work on reuse at last night's SCRAP Awards, held at The Nines in downtown Portland.

The evening, themed 'Incognito,' featured performances from the Transcendental Brass Band, a "Junk to Funk" fashion show, and both silent and live auctions.

Nick shared the "2009 Reuse Visionaries" award with County Commissioner Jeff Cogen. The two were honored for their work on ReUse Week 2009, a event earlier this year designed to draw attention to the wide variety of reuse organizations in Portland.

Nick and Jeff gave a lively acceptance speech, promising that ReUse Week 2010 would be bigger and better than ReUse Week 2009.

Special thanks are due to Debbie Caselton, outstanding City employee, leader in the Diverse Empowered Employees of Portland (DEEP), and SCRAP Board Secretary, who helped arrange the evening!

Check our 'Photo Gallery' for more photos of the festivities!