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Albina Vision Trust announces community design workshop

Posted by on December 18th, 2020 at 2:51 pm

It’s been a while since we heard from the folks behind Albina Vision Trust, the ambitious effort to recreate the vibrant Albina neighborhood that was decimated by the construction of Interstate 5 and Memorial Coliseum in the 1960s.

In the past two years the Albina Vision has become mostly known as a political football in the march to expand the very same freeway responsible for its demise. Now it’s time to center the vision itself and the nonprofit group working to realize it invites you to attend a community design workshop on Monday (12/21).

According to the event website, the plan is to have attendees help brainstorm and envision what the new Albina should look like. Here’s more:

The Albina Vision Trust is engaged in honoring Albina’s past by transforming what exists today into a socially and economically inclusive community of residents, businesses, artists, makers, and visitors. We want to learn from you – our neighbors, friends, loved ones, mentors and colleagues – what this looks like to you.


(Conceptual renderings of the vision.)

The workshops will share the current vision for how spaces within the site might be used and ask for your input on its new living, community, and business spaces. Your hosts will be the artist/musician Bobby Fouther and Black Resilience Fund Co-founder Cameron Whitten.

Register for the free event here. Albina Vision Trust has also launched their first-ever survey, which you can take online here.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and
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Middle of the Road Guy
Middle of the Road Guy

Is the goal here to attract formerly displaced residents and their families back to the area – which was primarily Black?

I’m curious as to the mechanisms for doing that. Most of the other new development in the area has been populated by non-Black residents.

If the intent is simply “honoring the district’s history and African-American/Black community roots, and celebrating it into the future” then it will just seem like a bunch of woke white folks feeling good about themselves for living in an area that pats itself on the back for mentioning past history.

mark smith
mark smith

Tear down I-5 and give it back to the families it was stolen from….

John Liu
John Liu

What is the chance the input is dominated by white people, who moved to Portland between five minutes and five years ago, looking for opportunities to gentrify the memory of Albina into a sort of co-working co-living one-step-past-student-housing project for the white, well educated, upwardly mobile, fit and carless 18-28 set?

I have seen effective public engagement focused on communities of color, but it requires affirmatively excluding white participants from at least a part of the process.