East Portland neighborhood leaders find a home in Hazelwood

Thanks to help from the Portland Water Bureau, the East Portland Neighborhood Office is now meets in the Hazelwood Water District building …

Now, these chairs and committee leaders of east Portland neighborhoods can meet in their own space.

Story and photo by David F. Ashton
For years, the low concrete block building at 1017 NE 117th Avenue was used primarily for storage by the Portland Water Bureau.

“I was looking at some of the Portland Water Bureau properties last year,” Commissioner Randy Leonard tells us, “and thought this building might make a good location for EPNO.”

For the EPNO, the timing can’t be better. Their lease on their cramped offices, located behind Portland Police East Precinct’s office, is about to expire. Leonard approached the EPNO’s leaders and made them a deal they didn’t refuse: A lease for $1 per year.

“Their move here helps the city, by keeping the building occupied,” Leonard explains, “and will keep down vandalism. With $1-a-year rent, their move here frees up approximately $8,000 [paid per their former lease] that can go directly into neighborhood programs.”

What’s next? Leonard’s water bureau staff is turning the property which surrounds the building into the city’s first “Hydro-Park” ‚Äì a Water Bureau property opened, landscaped, and prepared for public use. Check back next week to see how this project is coming along!

¬© 2006 David F. Ashton ~ East PDX News

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