Business owners say streets safer, cleaner 60 days into Portland’s Central Eastside ‘90-Day Reset’

Published: Apr. 6, 2023 at 5:17 PM PDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) - The Central Eastside neighborhood in Portland hit a major milestone this week in its 90-Day Reset Plan.

Clare Briglio is the Executive Director of the Central Eastside Industrial Council and said she’s happy with the progress her district has made in cleaning up trash, reducing petty crime, and removing unsanctioned camps. Some businesses in the neighborhood said they too noticed a difference. They’ve told Briglio that the streets feel cleaner and safer compared to 60 days ago.

“We have a lot of cleaner streets, cleaner right of ways, and if you’ve driven around lately you’d probably have seen less graffiti,” Briglio said.

SEE ALSO: Bonamici talks the Parent/Student Bill of Rights, Trump indictment

It’s not just cleaning up the streets and making them safer for customers that Briglio said see she is positive progress. Briglio said the relationship between business leaders in the neighborhood and city leaders has improved too.

“We’ve really strengthened our relationship with our city partners,” Briglio said. “We’re all here to do a good job and bring back some sort of normalcy and safety to the streets.”

According to Briglio, the number of unsanctioned camps dropped from 150 to 80 over the last two months. She said with the governor approving more money for the Oregon Department of Transportation to clear camps on their property, more will be cleared in the Central Eastside.

When it comes to graffiti and trash removal, she said the city has devoted half of its resources in the neighborhood to cleaning off unwanted graffiti. The city has also removed nearly 374,000 pounds of trash since December.

Businesses have reported to Briglio that they’ve seen a reduction in vandalism and other petty crimes because of the increased police presence. Briglio said her district is working to bring back the community policing action committee to teach people in the area how to deter crime. Briglio said her district’s work to reset the Central Eastside will not stop after 90 days.

“I think it’s going to take a lot of community effort to sustain the work that we’ve done so far,” Briglio said. “That’s the conversation we’re having right now with the city and they’re fully invested and involved with that and just as eager to have that work sustained as well.”

SEE ALSO: Caught on Camera: Window-smashing spree with golf club shakes up North Portland neighborhood

Michael Albino, owner of Legacy Modern Home Furnishings said he’s noticed the cleanliness improve around his business. But he said clearing unsanctioned camps shouldn’t be the overall solution.

“We have to figure it out, we have to help people,” Albino said. “Even if we don’t know them or even if we don’t know their story.”

He said running a business in the Central Eastside is still challenging. He does hope the momentum continues in his neighborhood and the 90-Day Reset wasn’t a short-term fix to long-term problems.

“I’d like to see it keep going but what are we resetting to? We’re resetting to what? To start again? Or are we evolving to something else?” Albino said. “I’d like to see us evolve in a more respectful manner for people’s right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness that’s guaranteed to all of us.”