Mt. Tabor Master Plan, and “open yard day”
For decades, the Mt. Tabor Park Central Yard and Nursery — the heart of Portland’s parks system — has been neglected, and the workers there have to make the most of some pretty run-down facilities in the upkeep of our parks.
This all came to light a couple years ago, when a group of my neighbors found out about a quiet plan to sell the facility to a neighboring college. It started off with a mediation between local residents and the Portland Parks & Recreation bureau (PP&R); after interrupting the land sale, and a successful close to mediation, we turned our attention to planning out the best use of the yard and nursery in providing for a healthy parks system for decades to come.
Last fall, City Council committed to funding a public involvement project at $465,000. (Read more here.) A fairly steep price tag, but when you’re facing a situation that’s messed up on numerous levels, it requires a thorough rethinking; also, our plans will have an impact over many years, so it’s important to “get it right” the first time around. Our committee consists of 36 people, representing an incredible diversity of experience and skills.
Unfortunately, Mayor Potter’s current proposed budget falls $200,000 short of the amount promised. If this is not corrected, it essentially means an end to our project, which is not a scalable enterprise. Right now, we’re approaching Council members to remind them of the significance of our project, and ensure that it is fully funded in the final version of the budget.
We’ve prepared a letter to Council, and are also encouraging our members and anyone concerned with the future of our parks to write Council members individually. Please consider sending your own, before Monday, May 12.
There will be guided tours of work areas, gardens, greenhouses. It’s a rare opportunity to peek behind the scenes at what makes our parks work, and share your ideas about how the yard and nursery should look and work in the future.
- Official PP&R web page for our project
- WordPress blog about our project, including links to news articles