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1120 SW Fifth Avenue, Portland, OR 97204
Rendering of the Luuwit View Park water spray feature is courtesy of 2.Ink Studio
POSTED JUNE 3, 2016
(Portland, OR) –
Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) Mayor Charlie Hales, and Portland Parks Commissioner Amanda Fritz announce the groundbreaking of Luuwit View Park (pronounced loo-WIT), between NE Fremont St. and NE Shaver St.
WHAT: Groundbreaking celebration of Luuwit View Park
WHEN: Saturday, June 4, 2016, 11am-12pm
WHERE: Shaver Elementary School, 3701 NE 131st Place, Portland
Enjoy cake, a Native American blessing ceremony, and special guest speakers.
Spread on 16 acres adjacent to Shaver Elementary School in northeast Portland’s Argay neighborhood, Luuwit View Park will offer expansive views – including a majestic vista of Luuwit - the name people of the upper Cowlitz have for the iconic Mt. St. Helens. The park’s name helps to honor the indigenous people who have lived on the land since time immemorial, and to recognize the overall history of the area. The City also recognizes the significant farming history of the land.
The park will serve nearly 1000 new households, ones which currently do not have ready access to a park.
Luuwit View Park is expected to open in the fall of 2017.
“With years of collaboration between the City and community members, this park will be a great asset to nearly 1,000 households once it’s completed,” says Portland Mayor Charlie Hales. “I’m proud to join the community and the Bureau in celebrating the addition of Luuwit View Park to our renowned parks system.”
“The groundbreaking of Luuwit View Park represents another major milestone in my time as the Commissioner for Portland Parks & Recreation,” says Commissioner Amanda Fritz. “Right now only 2 of 5 residents enjoy easy access to a park in this area of east Portland. Luuwit View will allow Argay Terrace neighbors to enjoy new options for play, relaxation and reflection that they have been awaiting for more than 40 years. I commend our neighborhood partners for their vision and tenacity.”
“I’m excited about the new park, one we’ve been eagerly anticipating for so long, says Nina Palacios, a member of the Luuwit View naming committee. “I volunteer at the adjacent Shaver School, and the kids there are bursting with anticipation!”
Fast Facts on Luuwit View Park:
- Adjacent to Shaver Elementary School in the Parkrose School District, in the Argay neighborhood of NE Portland. Luuwit View Park will feature large, expansive lawns, an accessible playground, a fog garden where water mists out to play in, grand views, a youth sports field, a full-size basketball court and a teen area. The latter will include a climbing structure, two ping pong tables, a group seating area; and a skate park. The entire teen area will be covered, with colorful sports court surfacing. Other park features include accessible picnic areas, a shelter, a restroom, foot and bike paths, parking, community gardens, and a fenced off-leash dog area. A multi-use paved trail will circle around the entire site, and public art and bilingual interpretive signage will be incorporated into key areas.
-Luuwit View Park will serve 965 new households which currently do not have ready access to a park. Data show that 49% of these households are racial and ethnic minorities, and 23% are experiencing poverty. The park design meets all accessibility standards.
- Project construction cost is estimated at $8.4 million, from Parks System Development Charges (not General Fund tax dollars). This estimate includes a park restroom (added during the design process) and $200,000 for construction contingencies.
“It is extremely exciting to see Luuwit View Park begin its long-awaited construction,” says Portland Parks & Recreation Director Mike Abbaté. “The park will have amazing views, which is fitting because we are building the park that the neighbors have long envisioned. It has a prime location in the neighborhood and right next door to Shaver Elementary School. Luuwit View Park will be a special place for current and future generations of park visitors.”
Director Abbaté noted that the park is also close to Parkrose Middle School and Parkrose High School.
“The name ‘Luuwit View Park’ holds meaning on many different levels”, says Cary Watters, a member of the Tlingit Tribe and of the park naming committee. “The fact that this park's honors the traditional way in which our people named places, is a huge step forward in healing - not only for the Native community, but for the land and the at-large community.”
As Portland Parks & Recreation commits to new parks in communities where none currently exist - and to expanding other parks - many existing parks are at a crossroads. For decades, PP&R operating funding has been cut or remained flat, forcing the Bureau to postpone rehabilitation and maintenance in every neighborhood throughout the City. Despite the 2014 Parks Replacement Bond, passed by voters with overwhelming support, the list of needs across the PP&R system is huge, and grows every year that we don’t address it. PP&R has anticipated unfunded maintenance needs totaling nearly $250 million over the next 10 years. The beautiful parks we love to visit are being held together by thousands of volunteers and wonderful employees going above and beyond the call of duty.
System Development Charges, the funding being used to create the two new parks in east Portland (not General Fund tax dollars) are restricted to expanding capacity only. SDCs cannot be used to maintain or repair existing facilities. It is also insufficient to fully address the hundreds of park projects needed by our rapidly growing neighborhoods – an additional need of approximately $472 million over the next ten years.
”In east Portland, two out of every five households do not have easy access to a City park. That is in stark contrast to the rest of Portland where four out of every five households live within a half-mile of a park or natural area“, adds Commissioner Fritz, who designated Luuwit View Park (and Gateway Discovery Park) for development after careful consideration of community input.
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