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For the business associaton reaching across several neighborhoods on S.E. 82nd, it's been a year of ups and downs

DAVID F. ASHTON - Frank Harris, Nancy Chapin, Gary Sargent, Todd Struble, Marina Martinez-Bateman, and Eilene Curtiss, Past President, 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade Committee receive Outstanding Volunteer awards. Although their major event, the 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade, was cancelled, members of the 82nd Avenue of Roses Business Association say they don't feel defeated, and look forward to success in the next year.

That was the message shared by their leaders at their Annual Meeting held on May 11 at Cartlandia on SE 82nd.

"Our association got a lot of press this year – we even made headlines in the Clinton, Missouri, nightly news!" exclaimed the association's outgoing president, Frank Harris, who is Facilities Manager at the Portland Community College Southeast Campus. He was talking about the parade.

"We worked together to make the safest decision for our neighborhood," Harris said. "We stuck together, and presented a professional face to the nation, doing and saying what was necessary, and we got right back to the important business of supporting the district."

The association has done well this year, Harris summarized, pointing out:

· The 82 Dishes event brought customers into their 45 participating restaurants;

· They increased membership by 29%, and about 44% of members are immigrants or people of color;

· The association brought the auto industry together, for the first time, at its Cars and Cocktails event; and,

· They partnered with local leadership to create a coupon book that was distributed to more than 900 neighbors, encouraging them to shop on 82nd Avenue.

On a personal note, and it is always personal: Being your president has been an honor, Harris said. Without all of you, we could not have been successful. I encourage you to keep on doing the good work that you have been doing, because I know you're going to do bigger and better things!

Also at the meeting, City of Portland Bureau of Planning & Sustainabilitys City Planner Radcliffe Dacanay told about the project hes managing  the 82nd Avenue Study: Understanding Barriers to Redevelopment.

"What we've done is talked with a number of businesses and property owners and we are trying to get a sense of the property owners' potential for development in a five year timeframe," Dacanay told THE BEE.

"We don't anticipate a lot of development, given the market right now," Dacanay added. "We want to be able to work with property owners, should they be interested that any of the improvements that they make are to be coordinated with the ODOT improvements and other transportation investments such as the Division Transit Project area," he said.

The next steps to pursue are to obtain additional grant funds to do "deeper-dive" studies on the south end of 82nd Avenue, as well as funding to implement projects, and working with the State Legislature on way to improve business viability on 82nd Avenue.

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