Laurelhurst Pond and Thomas Cully Park to Share Sludge

Restoration of Laurelhurst Pond is underway. The first step in the process is to reduce the amount of sediment, comprised of sand and organic material, which will increase the depth of the water. Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) will install several features to improve circulation and prevent the sludge from collecting at the bottom. This will help to keep the temperature down and reduce the likelihood of destructive algae blooms. Work is expected to continue through the fall season.

PP&R contracted with the Bureau of Environmental Services in 2008 and 2009 to determine the contaminant contributing to the pond’s demise. Traces of Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB), which was banned from use in 1979, was found in the sediment in two areas of the pond. Although PP&R says the concentration of PCB is below the threshold that poses a public health threat, they are not removing sludge from those two areas of the pond.

The sediment excavated from Laurelhurst Pond will be free of PCB and distributed at the site of the future Thomas Cully Park to replace soil loss. PP&R says it may smell like fertilizer but they anticipate that the odor will not be noticeable to local residents and businesses. For questions, comments or concerns about this project, contact Liz Moorhead, Capital Projects Manager, at or 503.823.5883.

Late Summer Gardening Classes Announced

Gardening classes
Photo courtesy of Portland Parks and Recreation.

No time like the change of seasons to learn a few new gardening tricks. The schedule of classes and work parties for late summer/early fall 2010 was announced by PP&R’s Community Gardens last month. The city’s newest community garden at Gilbert Heights Park was celebrated on August 4 followed by a fall gardening class at the Fulton Demonstration Garden on August 12. The latter part of the month and September promise a wide variety of classes and events, including gardening classes for beginners. Volunteer opportunities abound. There will be work parties for garden clean-ups and fruit tree pruning in addition to several special celebrations. 

Upcoming Classes and Events

Saturday, August 21, 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
Harvest Celebration 
Woodlawn Children’s Garden 
7200 NE 11th Avenue

Saturday, August 28, 9 a.m.-2:00 p.m.
DePave Work Party
Vermont Hills Garden
Southwest 55th & Iowa

Saturday, September 11, 9-11:30 a.m.
Work Party at Vermont Hills Garden
SW 55 & Iowa

Saturday, September 18, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Urban Gardening Fair & Produce Judging
Green Thumb Site
6801 SE 60th Avenue

Saturday, September 25, 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
Annual Cider Press
Gabriel Orchard
Southwest 41st & Canby

To learn more visit

New Acupuncture Needles Make Their Point

Acupuncture needle in the Gateway Green
Acupuncture needle in Gateway Green.

The Portland Plan announced that two more giant acupuncture needles have found their mark in an open space—Gateway Green—between I-84 and I-205 and in the Powellhurst-Gilbert Neighborhood. Gateway Green is unused land between two freeways but community members and elected officials would prefer that it be used as a sustainable recreation area for off-road cycling and hiking. The Powellhurst-Gilbert Neighborhood lacks in basic services and amenities such as sidewalks, good transit, and grocery stores. 

The giant needles are part of the Portland Acupuncture Project. The intent is to explore the health of the city by literally pointing out  problem areas that need attention.

You can visit the Gateway Green acupuncture needle by taking the bike path north from the Gateway Transit Center. If you must drive, park and walk from Gateway. The needle stuck in the Powellhurst-Gilbert Neighborhood is located at Southeast 122nd Avenue and Reedway, just off the Springwater Corridor Trail.

Coordinating Committee to End Homelessness Recognizes Outstanding Achievement

Coordinating Committee to End Homelessness Recognizes Outstanding Achievement

On July 21, the Coordinating Committee to End Homelessness (CCEH) recognized the heroic efforts of individuals and organizations working to address homelessness in Multnomah County, at the third annual 2010 CCEH Achievement Awards. Presenters were Nick Fish, City of Portland Housing Commissioner; Deborah Kafoury, Multnomah County Commissioner; and Lio Alaalatoa, Lead Outreach Worker for JOIN, and a recipient of a 2009 CCEH Achievement Award.

The 2010 Achievement Award recipients in the individual category were:

  • John Atten, Central City Concern, Housing Compliance & Occupancy Department
  • Edith Ayon, Human Solutions Inc., Daybreak Shelter Network Coordinator
  • Pastor Steve Kimes, Anawim Christian Community, Founder and Director
  • Rick Lesniak, Home Builders Foundation, Board Director
  • Reverend Kate Lore, First Unitarian Church of Portland, Social Justice Minister
  • Tiffany Tucker, Insight Teen Parent Program, Program Director

Recipients in the program category were:

  • Project Respond’s Intensive Homeless Outreach Program (PR-IHOP), Cascadia BHC
  • Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter Resident Assistant Team, The Salvation Army

CCEH leads the 10-Year Plan to End Homelessness in Portland and Multnomah County. The Portland Housing Bureau is one of 45 member groups representing a broad range of stakeholders dedicated to ending homelessness, faith groups, residents, formerly homeless individuals and other community representatives.