More on Alleys

For those interested in improving neighborhood alleyways—and to follow up on our previous article—one of our readers, Derek, has offered the following to the conversation:

Alleyway beautification: the alley between SE 71st and 72nd, and SE Center and Rhone, serves as an example of how these spaces can be transformed

Alleyway beautification: the alley between SE 71st and 72nd, and SE Center and Rhone, serves as an example of how these spaces can be transformed

“…I’m one of the former PSU graduate students who worked on the Alley Allies project and I also provided guidance on the PSU undergraduate students who did the Alley7172 project you showed pictures from (more info is here:

“I wanted to comment because PSU’s Institute for Sustainable Solutions just launched a program called the Sustainable Neighborhood Initiative. They’ve committed to working with residents in Foster-Powell and other neighborhoods that are part of the FosterGreen EcoDistrict on projects such as alley improvements over the next 3-5 years. This summer they hired a graduate student to work specifically with your community on such projects. Residents who are serious about their project, should contact the ISS now and ask about the program. You can find the info here:

“Also, there are lots of alleys in Northeast Portland, and recently we met with a group of interested residents from up there and brainstormed some alley related ideas. You can share ideas and ask questions on the Portland Alley Group forum we just started here:

“If you have questions or ideas about alley projects, feel free to contact us using the email on our website (linked in Jeff’s original article).”

This is a great resource that, while requiring time, energy and neighborhood collaboration, could provide a positive, transformative effect for the area’s livability. Thanks, Derek.

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3 Responses to More on Alleys

  1. Ben H says:

    Thanks for sharing, this is a great project as most people with alleys I talk to see the alleys as a liability, or something to fear. People turn their backs on them, they become neglected spaces ripe for illicit behavior.

    I have always imagined this project as a great precedent for what they alleys could be,
    pollinator strips benefiting habitat for birds and beneficial insects.

  2. Miles says:

    I was just thinking about such a thing the other day. Wondering about how we could engineer synergy across the neighborhood to promote wildlife and a healthy ecosystem. And I love alleys, grew up on one. If only I had time to dedicate to a project like this.

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