Minutes Woodlawn Neighborhood Association
December 3, 2014 Held at Classic Foods. Minutes approved January 7, 2015.
Called to order by Chair Maija Spencer at 7:02.
INTRODUCTIONS: Board Members: Maija Spencer, Lisa Gladstone, Luke Groser, Anjala Ehelebe, Shirley Minor, Andrée Culpepper, Amy Ruiz. Attendees: Bryan Nesmith,Mary Evans (Woodlawn School family engagement specialist) Myra Lovell, Wayne Reitz, Rhonda Sabala, Ursula Irwin, Ross Danielson, John vanLeeuwen, Carlo Castoro (interested in neighborhood cleanup), Kelly vanLeeuwen, Byron Tennant, Elizabeth Specht (Urban Forestry), Philip Stenstrom (Noise Program manager from Port of Portland), Kelly Sweeney (NE Portland representative member on Port Citizen Noise Advisory Committee), Jerry Gerspach (Port Noise Analyst), and Anthony Zoeller (Neighborhood Response Team (NRT) officer (firstname.lastname@example.org).
AGENDA FOR TONIGHT & OCT/NOV MINUTES: Amy motioned approving the agenda, Lisa seconded, agenda passed as written.
Luke made a motion to approve both sets of October draft minutes and the November draft minutes. Maija requested an explanation of who Garlynn is and what his proposal is about in the October 1 minutes. Luke accepted the amendment of his motion, Amy seconded the amended motion and the motion passed unanimously.
OFFICER ZOELLER’S REPORT: During the holiday season there are more problems with mail theft, package theft. We are a good neighborhood for reporting suspicious activities, so continue to be looking around and reporting suspicious activity. Car prowls continue as usual. When Christmas shopping, don’t buy things, put them in car, then go do other things. Thieves are watching the parking lot for just this event and break in and steal presents when you leave the car. Question: Shoes on telephone lines, do they come down on their own? yes, eventually, it is urban legend that such shoes are marking drug sales areas. High foot or vehicle traffic at a residence and/or poor house maintenance are better clues to probable drug houses.
Question about motorcycle racing up and down Holman St., what to do? call 911 or non-emergency. If you know who is doing it, the officer can talk to the doer. Only if the officer sees the racer in action can they cite the racer.
PORT NOISE MANAGEMENT: Special guest speaker, Jerry Gerspach, one of three noise analysts at Port of Portland. They are employees of the Port and have no special powers turn off noise, but they work to develop arrival and departure procedures to quiet noise. They also help educate the public as to what is causing the noise and how to identify planes flying at inappropriate heights.
1. The Port uses an Integrated Noise Modeling program developed by FAA and it spits out a Noise Exposure map when you feed in data about flights, land use. The “65 Day and Night Level (DNL) Noise Contour” is a metric created by this program that averages all the noise over a 24 hour period and also over 365 days. (This contour line looks like a limp red rubber band drawn around an area on the map of Portland near the airport. Area within that band is in the “65 Contour”.) Kelly says that no housing development is allowed in the “65”, according to Portland building codes, because this is where aircraft noise is loudest.
The Port assembles a very diverse committee that hashes out noise problems, on average, over a-two year period. Recommendations to quiet noise are sent to the FAA and the FAA is asked if the recommendations can be done. If yes, the Port works to implement them.
2. They try to do is keep the heavy jet departures over the river as long as they can. While heavy jets use the river flight paths during plane rush hours, the smaller parcel packing and private planes can’t go over the river. These planes end up going over Woodlawn and other neighborhoods, using secondary runways to take off into the wind.
3. Lists outreach to community as one of their many duties. Training air traffic controllers in how to lessen noise impacts by routing planes appropriately is another.
4. Shows aircraft traffic flow map; in summertime the planes take off to the west because of off-shore winds, this reverses in the winter with Gorge winds from the East. In the summertime, the Woodlawn area gets a lot of overflights taking off. These are usually commuter planes with turboprops and cargo feeders going to regional airports taking off in the morning. If complainers call with a name, phone number and email, the complaint will be logged and they will get a response.
5. There are several law enforcement agencies with small planes that circle neighborhoods for hours at a time. ALL planes must be at 1000 feet above the neighborhoods if not taking off or landing.
6. Ursula asks if engine tests go on at night because she hears roars. Sometimes. There is a structure where planes go to test engines. A plane has to be over 12,000 lbs to use the structure (the run up facility). Smaller planes run up their engines on the runway.
7. Rhonda asks if there’s a way to know in advance when the National Guard planes take off? Yes, between 8-9 am they are taking off for training, then again between 12-1. Once a month they do night flight training taking off at 5 pm.
YOU CAN SIGN UP FOR EMAIL ALERTS FOR MILITARY FLIGHTS AThttp://www.portofportland.com/Noise_Mgmt_Home.aspx OR FOLLOW THEM ON TWITTER @PDXNoiseAlerts. REPORT NOISE INCIDENTS ON THE WEBSITE OR BY PHONE AT503.460.4100 (LIVE PERSON ANSWERS 8AM-5PM, M-F).
SALT: Byron says the SALT (Safety And Livability Team) is also interested in noise issues. He would like to see more input coming from Woodlawn on the Portland Comprehensive Plan. He mentioned that NECN’s Land Use webpage (http://necoalition.org/issues/community-committees/land-use-and-transportation-committee/ ) has a summary of land use comments received, and he supports the comments from Micah Meskel (NECN Board member)’s testimony regarding industrial areas posted here: http://necoalition.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Micah-Meskel_Industrial-Zoned-Lands-Testimony-11-4-14.pdf
LAND USE & TRANSPORTATION (LUTC): The NECN LUTC is working on drafting comments about various Comprehensive Plan issues as brought to them by participating neighborhoods, putting it into a letter that will be amended/approved by the NECN Board in January, then sent to the City Planning department.
The public comment period for the Comprehensive Plan has been extended to March 13, 2015. The public can go online to view the Comprehensive Plan map app:http://www.portlandmaps.com/bps/cpmapp2/
Clicking on the map lets you see which areas in Portland are proposed for which changes in the next 20 years. IT IS IMPORTANT TO TAKE THE TIME TO CHECK THE PLAN AND MAP OUT AND COMMENT. More info on the Plan and the process here: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/bps/57352
The NECN LUTC (Land Use and Transportation Committee) had a meeting focused on summarizing neighborhood comments on the Comprehensive plan. Woodlawn LUTC members gave the following comments:
Environmental: We are against turning green spaces in the Riverside and Broadmoor golf courses into industrial areas; these concerns link with the N Portland neighborhood air quality comments and Mikel’s testimony about not converting green spaces into industrial areas. Also against turning current nature reserve and salmon hatchery West Hayden Island into an industrial port facility. Plans for creating industrial areas along Lombard and Columbia go against the need to develop affordable housing, and also could increase the pollution in North and NE Portland. They would definitely increase the number of heavy trucks through the neighborhood.
Safety: Deep concerns about the volatile items being shipped on trains through our neighborhoods and the potential for explosions or environmental catastrophe. Rhonda says there are Ethanol and alcohol tanks on 30th Ave. and propane tanks at Amerigas, all are along the train tracks. Shipping oil, gas, ammonia, coal, or flammable liquids by train carries risk. The Comprehensive Plan proposes adding another track. (Kenton Rail Line project). This additional track could increase shipping of volatiles and at higher speeds. We have grade schools and residences extremely close to the tracks. Our neighborhood center, the Triangle, is well within the blast radius if an explosive derailment happened at 11th and Lombard.
Transportation: A proposed plan for a bridge over the train tracks near 11th or 13th would need closer examination. This bridge could be a good thing, allowing emergency vehicles to cross from south to north without having to detour to MLK when a train is on the tracks.
Institutional Campus Zones: We have concerns about this proposed new zoning as to how it could increase the ability of a school to expand into residential areas and its effects on parking.
We like the “Concordia Flats” idea proposed by Garlynn Woodsong, and we have concerns about maintaining affordability with infill. Our Woodlawn Historic Design area overlay is mainly ignored when folks want to build, and we run the risk of losing historic Queen Annes to “blah” townhouses, as in Eliot.
NECN BOARD: Luke and Shirley, our NECN Liaisons report: The Executive Director of NECN resigned in July, a current staffer is the interim director. Plan is to begin a Director recruitment starting in January.
TREASURER’S REPORT: Spent $20 on food last month. Amy moves, Lisa seconds approving Treasurer’s report.
COMMUNICATIONS PLAN: Approve 2015 Communications Funds Proposal (a budget for the funds) that will allow NECN to give us $1000. Luke explained it, then made the motion to support the proposal. Amy seconded it, motion passes unanimously.
CLEAN-UP COMMITTEE FOR 2015: Passed around a sign-up sheet. Will try to set up a meeting in January with past coordinator and begin planning, including setting a date. Several people supported having the clean-up on a non-holiday weekend (previously has been held on Memorial Day weekend).
WOODLAWN SCHOOL UPDATE: Maija gives an introduction to Mary Evans, Family Coordinator, to talk about the three year grant to improve Woodlawn School. School was reconstructed over the summer, including earthquake retrofitting. Sign up for a tour of the school given by a parent by calling the front office (503-916-6282). Contact Mary (email@example.com) if you want to get more involved. Example: Connect kids with the community by hanging their art in your office. Next Tuesday there will be a great holiday party organized by the Woodlawn PTA. Sign up for volunteer opportunities at Woodlawn by contacting Mary and creating an account at www.volunteerspot.com
URBAN FORESTRY STREET TREE INVENTORY Maija introduced Elizabeth Specht with Urban Forestry, and she described the street tree inventory. Starting in January, volunteers would receive training in tree identification. Then, they would go out into neighborhoods four Saturdays in the summer to gather tree data and put it in GIS. We need someone to take the lead for the neighborhood, and we need to apply by Jan 15th if we want to do the inventory in our neighborhood. Contact a board member if you want to be involved in this. Do we have any Heritage Trees in our neighborhood? Not known yet. More info here: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/article/433150
ANNOUNCEMENTS: Small Grants for neighborhood projects will be available from NECN – ApplicationsAvailable 01/05/15 & Due 02/09/15.Need volunteers for the December 6th Christmas Bazaar at 18th avenue market. Contact Stober Davis if you can help with set up or take down.
Luke requests authorization from the board to give out “You’ve got pretty holiday decorations” flyers as he has done the prior two years. Anjala motioned in favor, Amy seconded, all in favor unanimously.
Maija adjourned the meeting at 8:35. Next WNA meeting: Wed, Jan 7th – 7pm-8:30pm. Topics to include: North Star Village (aging in place), Friends of Trees.