Steel beams to enhance safety, park experience
(Portland, OR) –
As originally reported by Portland Parks & Recreation last fall, the canopy over Director Park is in need of maintenance and repair.
R&H Construction, in collaboration with ZGF, KPFF and Portland Parks & Recreation, has developed a comprehensive plan to complete the project. Execution of the work is on schedule. The design and permitting is complete. Construction is set to begin on September 23, 2015, and to be completed in early December, 2015. A majority of work will conclude before the holiday street closure moratorium begins.
During construction, Director Park will remain open for use, with the exception of the area directly under and around the canopy, including Elephants Café.
Portland’s Park Blocks are some of the oldest parks in the city; they were platted for public use in the late 1840s by Daniel H. Lownsdale and William Williams Chapman. While their original concept to create 25 contiguous public blocks for parks, schools or public markets extending north to south was not fully realized, the existing 18 blocks remain a defining element of our city. As the city developed around them, each block took on its own unique character.
The 19th block, Director Park, was a decade in the making, and was completed in 2009. The iconic downtown public space was made possible through generous donations from the Thomas P. Moyer family and Jordan Director Schnitzer in partnership with the Portland Parks Foundation, as well as funding from the City of Portland and the Portland Development Commission's South Park Blocks Urban Renewal Area.
“My grandparents, Simon and Helen Director, were part of a generation of immigrants whose hard work helped build this city,” says Jordan Director Schnitzer. “Simon Director (1891-1981) was born in the small Russian village of Chartoriysk. He arrived in Portland in 1910 and began work as a butcher. Helen Holtzman (1900-1976) was born in Warsaw, Poland. She arrived in Portland in 1915 and that same year met and married my grandfather. They had three daughters, June, Ruth, and Arlene.”
“Simon and Helen Director served their community with distinction, paving the way for their children and grandchildren and for generations to come. This park honors their memory and that of their generation in the hope that those who follow will continue their efforts to make Portland the wonderful city that we call home.” ~ Jordan Director Schnitzer