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Eastern Portland has fewer parks and greater need than other parts of the city

COURTESY PHOTO: PORTLAND PARKS & RECREATION - This aerial view of Parklane Park shows the already developed 5 acres at the bottom of the photo and the former gravel pit to be developed.

Portland Parks & Recreation soon will reveal the latest design plans for the 20 acres of new development at Parklane Park at 155th Avenue.

Community members can either see the plans online or take a self-guided walk around the park at at Southeast 155th Avenue and Main Street, and then comment on the proposals.

From Monday, July 20, through Sunday Aug. 2, people can view the plans online and give feedback. A link will go live July 20 and more information is at bit.ly/2W13jL2.

The other option is to tramp around the park from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, July 25, for a self-guided tour, starting at the southeast side of the park by Parklane Elementary School. There will be a few displays highlighting locations of future park amenities.

For this option PP&R asks people to wear a mask and observe social distancing. Wear sturdy shoes as the site is undeveloped and ground uneven.

COURTESY PHOTO: PORTLAND PARKS & RECREATION - The playground at Parklane Park is well-used by neighborhood kids.

Parklane Park is being expanded from 5 acres to 25 acres and PP&R expects it to be open in late fall of 2022. It currently has a small playground, sports courts, a Portland loo, benches and picnic tables.

Plans call for adding a waterpark, skatepark, community garden, tennis court, walking paths and more.

"There is a significant lack of parks and open spaces and a shortage of recreation facilities in the neighborhood. When fully developed, Parklane Park will serve 2,237 households, including 407 of which do not currently have ready access to any park or natural areas," PP&R said in development plans.

Areas east of Interstate 205 in Portland have long been "under parked" and the agency has been trying to remedy the "play gap" by developing new parks in the area.

PP&R just opened Verdell Burdine Rutherford Park at 167th and Market Street in the Centennial neighborhood. The once forlorn 7.7 acres now sport a colorful, inviting playground, walking paths, a Portland loo, soccer field and more.

Another park is in the very early stages in the far eastern part of the city. A 7.5-acre site at Southeast Division Street at Southeast 150th Avenue, dubbed D150 for now, is ready to be developed as soon as funding becomes available. D150 is a gently rolling site with views of Powell Butte.

PP&R's target is to have a park within a half-mile, or a 15- to 20-minute walk, of every household. Citywide, 4 of 5 Portlanders can walk to a park or natural area within a half- mile of their home. In East Portland, it is just 3 out of 5.

About 73% of Portland youth living outside East Portland can walk to a playground, but in East Portland only 41% can walk to a playground. Data show that 32% of Portland kids live in the eastern parts of Portland.


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