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Readers' Letters: City is making a mess of our streets

Thanks for this column, Dave Lister (Portland’s anti-car history is backing up a lot of traffic, guest column, May 6). I still live in the city of Portland, and Portland City Hall is making a mess of things in my neck of the woods near Southeast 12th to 39th Avenue and Division Street.

City Hall has basically eliminated large swaths of parking and extra space for navigating around vehicles wanting to make turns along Division. Also, increased density is rampant with high-rise condos or apartments. This used to be a quiet, but vibrant single-family detached housing neighborhood.

Now parking is backing up into surrounding neighborhoods, and car drivers are taking neighborhood roads rather than main streets like Division. Even if you are a bicyclist, the changes are hurtful, since now you have curb extensions blocking an otherwise smooth bike ride.

And if you are a pedestrian, try walking through a moated cemented bio-ditch.

If you are young and without family, these changes may have some allure, but for those with more life experience, you come away thinking: “Would someone please take away the crayons and paper of the planners and bureaucrats occupying Portland City Hall and Metro, too?”

Bob Clark

Southeast Portland

How about saving for a rainy day?

Since government always tries to spend every dollar available each fiscal year to keep their constituents happy, there will never be enough money (Propping up county bridges, April 29).

Here’s a quaint notion: If you know a piece on infrastructure has a certain lifespan, how about setting aside a certain percentage in each year’s budget to have the funds available for maintenance and replacement?

Jim Patterson

St. Helens

Looking for trouble? Well, tune in here

Well, well, well ... could it be Fox News Channel 12? It’s the “Disaster Channel” in town. There is nothing but crime, violence, mayhem and the occasional criminal doing something criminal (Yikes! What the heck are we so afraid of?, May 1).

Try watching nothing but Channel 12 for your local news, and you’ll soon think Chicago and Detroit are peaceful villages compared to the violence getting “reported” about Portland.

R.D. Gauntt

Southeast Portland

Oil dependence is the real dilemma

“Train safety” is derailing the core issue regarding oil, whether fracked from North Dakota or tar sands from Alberta, Canada. If it is a crime to assist a criminal in committing a murder, arson or bank robbery, is it not also a crime to assist in the destruction (murder, arson and theft) of the entire planet?

Ninety-nine percent of scientists generally agree that climate disruption and weather extremes are caused by human reliance on fossil fuels. These are, in turn, causing crop failures, migration of disease vectors, and outright extinctions of entire species.

Enabling an enterprise to market a product whose production and use causes such harm is a crime, one that dwarfs the derailments and fireballs for which, incidentally, there are no real plans to mitigate.

“Rail safety,” when it comes to fossil fuel transportation and export, is but a soothingly soporific phrase designed to lull and appease those who refuse to think beyond their own backyards. We can and must do better than this.

Pamela Allee

North Portland

Bus pass isn’t asking too much

My son is very fortunate to able to attend Northwest Academy (in downtown Portland). Due to the high cost of tuition, he is only able to do so because of the scholarship that he receives from them.

I believe that education is of primary importance and providing such is the reflection of a strong society and community. Thus, I have no qualms about supporting public education through my taxes whether I have children that directly receive that benefit or not. I appreciate that should it be necessary, he does have a seat in a classroom, as well as how important it is that we have educated citizens.

By accepting the scholarship from NWA, he gives up that seat in the classroom, but I don’t understand why he has to give up the bus pass. If my tax dollars would support him having the pass to attend school, why should he not receive one because he is not attending a public school? He still needs to travel to gain his education.

I am asking you to please consider this issue and promote equal access to transportation for all schoolchildren in our community.

Reid Richter

Northwest Portland

‘Barn home’ cats in search of new digs

Regarding Oregon’s feral cat crisis: As a local 501c3 nonprofit that traps, spays, neuters and relocates hundreds of feral cats throughout Multnomah, Clackamas and Marion counties each year, we are in constant need of barn homes, stables, wineries — any type of outdoor structure that can house a cat(s).

The cat(s) come to you already altered, vaccinated and treated for fleas and parasites. There is no adoption fee for a “barn home” cat. However, the barn owner must promise to provide food and water for the cat(s) from that point forward.

Cats are great for rodent control in your outdoor structures, not to mention the fact you are significantly improving the cats’ quality of life.

For more information, please contact Meow Village at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 503-789-9372.

Thank you, and please be responsible — spay and neuter.

Marsha Grow

Aurora