After reading the back and forth on this thread it's easy to see both sides. As a long term investment to the area, I do believe the project will succeed. Personally, I am cautiously optimistic about the project. I am still one of the hopeful ones though...and I think the project will be able to attract people to Centennial Mills once it's all finished up.
I live right in front of Tanners Springs Park and during good weather, their are always people out and about. With all the projects scheduled and finishing up in the north Pearl (Pearl Family Housing, ENSO, The Overton, and The Freedom Center, + ?) it seems that the potential for a new vibrant North Pearl is possible by the time Centennial Mills is completed.
Pettygrove St. is also being designed as a "green street". A concept that will be sure to attract active, athletic, eco-minded, curious, citizens to it. As the North Pearl grows (albeit at a slower pace), elements of the neighborhood that don't feel connected right now...potentially could fit quite well in 5 years time.
The Fields park (a thread I can't seem to find) will also attract families and dog owners alike...bringing even more people to a greener, well designed park. All of these things are attractors.
Plus, their is a possibility that the USS Ranger (not a sure thing), a possibility not known by many, might park just near the Fremont Bridge and serve as a Museum. Their is a national non-profit called the USS Ranger Foundation
that is trying to save the Aircraft carrier from being sunk into the ocean forever by bringing it to Portland. The USS Midway in San Diego is a huge attractor of people which could happen in the North Pearl if the USS Ranger is indeed brought to Portland.
The planning committee for the Pearl District Neighborhood Association seems to think that if all these things pan out (in the next five years) that the city will most likely look into putting in streetcar lines along Naito parkway.
The way the PDNA sees it, that if the synergy of a possible Jumptown or other Memorial Colosseum idea comes to fruition, then a ferry service could be created to connect Jumptown, to a marina near Centennial Mills / (possible Aircraft carrier Museum), and also connect over to Southwest Water front.
The vision is their, how likely it will all happen is totally up in the air as we all know...nothing is for sure in this current recession.
Oh and here is an update on the Fields Park progress, posted to the PearlDistrict.org website earlier today
Update | The Fields Neighborhood Park
After a two-year hiatus, Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R), the Project Advisory Committee, and design consultant the Office of Cheryl Barton are back at work on The Fields Neighborhood Park, refining the original concept plan and moving into schematic design.
Recent developments continue to move the long-awaited park, located at NW Overton and NW 11th Avenues, forward towards construction. Last fall, PP&R furthered the public involvement process and recruited two focus groups to provide much needed insight into two key park spaces: the Children’s Play Area and the Dog Area. The results: parents and child advocates clearly indicated the need for active, engaging, and kinetic activities; dog owners and advocates expressed concern over the size of the proposed dog area.
Currently, the design consultant is taking that feedback back to the drawing board – literally – to refine and further develop each of those two spaces. Ultimately, the final design will be the result of the available space, the public’s priorities, the need to balance needs to serve an entire community, and the limitations of the budget.
Refinements of the plan will be available for viewing from March 1st through March 6th at Umpqua Bank, NW 12th and Lovejoy. PP&R staff and Advisory Committee members will be on hand to discuss the design and answer questions at the following times:
Monday, March 1st, 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Wednesday, March 3rd, 12:00 noon – 2:00 p.m.
Friday, March 5th, 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 6th, 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Comment forms will be onsite all hours – so stop by, take a look, and tell us what you think of the designs for The Fields.
The Fields Neighborhood Park is the third park outlined in the 2001 Portland River District Park System Urban Design Framework Study. Two parks in the study have already been completed and opened, including Jamison Square (completed 2002) and Tanner Springs Park (completed 2005).
The Fields project was initiated in January 2007 with the Project Advisory Committee, including representatives from local Pearl District organizations as well as a cross-section of neighborhood residents, to guide the design process. Community priorities for the new park were established through questionnaires, a workshop, and an open house. The overwhelming consensus was for green open space in what was once the industrial and transportation hub of Portland.