Portland …. Wake Up and Take Back Your City

portland wake upNote: This first came to us as a comment by lowestcommondenominator. It deserves to be a post

Having traveled both nationally and internationally in some pretty rough areas…and now settled in the Pearl for about 2 years, can this be compared to anything I’ve seen ….anywhere?    Nope!

Only in the Pearl. Only in Portland. And it’s getting worse every month I’m still here… what a shame the government doesn’t enforce the laws to create a safe parks and a livable city.

Panhandlers: Multi-shopping-cart beggars that compliment you on what you’re wearing, and then when no money is offered, they yell at you to, “suck their D**k”, or to “F**k-off”.

Litterbugs: They leave their mess behind day after day for someone else to pick up. Piles. Boxes they slept on. Food containers. Vomit. Whatever else their body relieves. It’s everywhere…not just the parks, but up and down the streets from the Park… Davis, Everett, Flanders, and Glisan.

Drugs dealers: Bags, needles, you name it, all for sale in the Park, and just a half block from the wonderful playground for the kids. How instructive for them…. Fast-exchange deals, new business ops, gone bad deals…with all the yelling, ruckus, and foul language. Either way, it’s routine…daily, uninterrupted by the law.

Porta-Potty? The naïve wonder … where do the homeless go to the bathroom? The Portland Loo? Why take the time? That’s a block or two away… Watch them pull down their pants or whip it out in broad daylight. Across from million dollar condos.The remains, with toilet paper…it’s all just in piles around the trees. No fear in being watched. No matter. It’s their territory. No one is stopping them.

Booze it up: I observing 2 drunks relieving themselves on the front doors of a high end condo a block away from the park, my instinct blurted “you’ve gotta be kidding me!” Oooops …My bad. This isn’t my Park. It’s theirs. The two responded with, “Mr….You gotta problem with us???…Yo, Mr….You gotta problem with us???… Then followed me yelling for 4 blocks. Scared for life…note to self…no words, no eye contact, never. This is their place, not mine.

Portland Pearl, the visitors paradise. And then there’s the Naito Parkway waterfront…. just more of the same, in spades. A should-be focus for locals and visitors…. instead, it’s now officially on the “NOT SAFE to be there list”. Sad. Such a beautiful area…lost to the un-ruled.

Portland, Mayor, City Council….wake up!!! And take back your city. The police enforce your law. Right now, they are handcuffed by your “leave them alone” directives. (I know, I’ve asked many of them…)

Mayor Visits Park – What Happens Next?

Shooting Up in North Park Blocks Sept 3, 2015
Shooting Up in North Park Blocks Sept 3, 2015

Dear Mayor,
Thank you for your walk in the North Park Blocks initiated by the Emerson School this morning. I would like to share with you the events of my day subsequent to your walk.

By noon:

  1. I had to call Clean & Safe to remove shit that someone smeared on one of our office entryway doors. Our offices face the North Park Blocks.
  2. I watched two guys shoot up sitting on the curb on the park block at Flanders & 8th, took photos (on guy above), called the police immediately and gave Portland Police dispatch complete descriptions of what they were wearing and the fact they have a small red grocery cart and a bike. No one showed up nor has the police dept. called me back. And yes, I told Dispatch I had photos.
  3. Two of my employees watched a guy pull down his pants and take a dump in the park (basketball and bocce ball court block) between Flanders and Glisan.It is my understanding that you intend to walk the Park Blocks again in October. I would encourage you to time your walk later in the morning as illegal activities ramp up during the morning. Your walk this morning at 8:00 a.m. was too early for many of the daily illegal activities to start.

Emerson School Mom To Mayor Hales

The following email and photograph was sent to Mayor Hales by a concerned Emerson School parent on Sept 1st.

Outside the Emerson School 9-1-2015
Outside the Emerson School 9-1-2015

Mayor Hales,
It was a grim scene outside Emerson Elementary today for the first day of school. See photo for a sampling. By 9:30am the surrounding North Park Blocks were full of debris, off-leash dogs, marijuana smoke, nudity, aggressive behavior, and public intoxication.

It is unacceptable that students are exposed to this dangerous and unchecked atmosphere. The Park Blocks feel explosive. This is not what any public park should feel like, especially one that is home to 120 elementary students.

Please join me one morning this week as I continue to document the reoccurring unsafe situations. I’ll be there from 8:30am onwards.

Update: The Mayor is coming to walk the North Park blocks Thurs 9/3 at 8am.

Mayor Hales – What’s the Plan?

After ignoring the summer’s invasion of traveling gangs into the North Park Block, the city surrounded one park block (between Burnside and Couch) with barbwire-topped chainlink fencing to cordon off the block from all public use.

City either ignores problem or denies all use

Not surprisingly the gangs moved across the street to the playground block in front of the Emerson school. The remaining blocks up to Flanders now have a higher concentration of drug use, prostitution and off-leash dogs.

This morning Michelle Cardinal CEO and Co-Founder of R2C Group wrote Mayor Hales  requisition clarification regarding his plan to reclaim the park. We will publish his reply.

Mr. Mayor

I was wondering when the North Park Blocks will be finished with fencing for fixing of irrigation system and prep for Art Walk? Last week – the city did fence in just one block at corner between Burnside and Couch. But have not completed entire section between Couch and Glisan.

This partial fencing, has caused many of the vagrants and gangs to move into a smaller are in front of the Emerson School and also our offices on Davis and Flanders, all the way down to PNCA. Making the situation even more unbearable.

On a safety note – things continue to spiral out of control on the North Park Blocks. I’m sure you saw the story of our neighbor who’s dog was attacked by an unleashed Pit Bull over the weekend? 

At night we continue to have large groups of gangs setting up tents and camping on our sidewalks – especially on Davis/park – under an overhang across the street from our office.

I am very concerned – there is a heightened sense of palpable fear in our neighborhood. These traveling gangs of hooligans, seem to have no fear. They are brazen, because they know the police have no authority to do anything. I worry something horrible could go wrong. When can we get some relief soon?

Your swift attention is appreciated.

Yours truly,

North Park Blocks Stalker

North Park Blocks Stalker
North Park Blocks Stalker

North Park Block neighbors are warned to be on the lookout for this man.

Email from a North Park Block’s business owner August 24, 2015:

On Monday night after departing my office my husband and I were stalked by a young man under the influence. He wanted money, then asked for my phone so he could check his Facebook. He physically threatened us. We ducked into the lobby of one of our buildings and he tried to enter the building after us.  He then waited outside the door in a threatening manner.  I called Clean and Safe – who did come and informed us there was nothing they could do.  Just move him along…

I was pretty shaken.  I typically walk to my car alone at night after working late