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GAP creates greater divide for low-income residents
To the Editor:
In the article “Council approves Gateway action plan” (MCM Sept. 2016), author Isaac Hotchkiss mentions that there has been “Neighborhood feedback and concern that local urban renewal isn’t investing in the correct kinds of projects to grow Gateway,” but the article fails to address what those concerns are, nor does it mention what those desired projects would be. Instead, the article highlights how GAP is focused on creating a Gateway with the “highest potential for growth” by attracting people from outside of the Gateway community.
I’m afraid that the “growth” that GAP seems to be focused on might also create a loss for the Gateway community. Members of the Gateway community could lose their existing businesses and housing when higher property taxes and increased competition begin to alienate those in the Gateway/Parkrose neighborhoods currently struggling to make ends meet. What will happen to those living in the neighborhood’s subsidized housing if potential housing units could “feature rents of 80 and 100 percent median-family income, rather than the more heavily subsidized 60 percent MFI and smaller rents proposed currently”? Additionally, will loans be given to members of the Gateway community to improve upon or build their own businesses and renovate their own homes as a part of GAP, or will members of the Gateway community be the last to receive access to such opportunities? Will these new businesses hire people from the Gateway area, or will they hire people from the communities they come from rather than the communities they serve?
Tom Badrick, chairman of the Parkrose Heights Neighborhood Association, said, “There is tremendous opportunity in Gateway, and we have been waiting a very long time for when things turn the corner and we become what we’ve always been destined to be.” But if we unwittingly displace members of the community and ignore the need for more affordable housing in the area, are we really becoming the community we are destined to be, or are we simply perpetuating the problem that prevents communities from achieving their full potential by rejecting certain members of the community rather than providing them with the conditions they need to succeed?
Dallas High sideline crew praises PHS coaching staff, players
(Editor’s note: This note from a Dallas High sideline crew member was sent to Parkrose High Principal Molly Ouche and Assistant Principal Andre Goodlow following the football game played in Dallas on Friday, Sept. 2. With Ouche’s permission, we are sharing it here.)
Ms. Ouche and Mr. Goodlow:
I don’t think kudos and positive feedback are provided enough—I would like to commend your high school football coaching staff on their performance at last Friday’s game versus Dallas. I have been working the sidelines chains at Dallas for almost a decade and have had the opportunity to see many types of coaching staff. When Parkrose visited Dallas in 2010, the coaching staff did not reflect either behavior or player treatment Parkrose could be proud of. You should be proud of the 2016 version of your coaching staff. What we saw was a perfect balance of motivation and encouragement and a staff that worked together well. Most of all, they coached and mentored the players without disparaging them, kept things positive, and promoted respect. In my time working the sideline, they are one of the best coaching units we have seen. Kudos to your coaching staff and the players—again, they left the sidelines crew with a tremendous amount of respect.