News and happenings…

Let’s review some of the goings-on in the neighborhood after a week-long lull:

– We’ve got gyros, y’all! Ok, the neighborhood is not technically new to gyros—we have Gyro House on SE 82nd, and El Sultan food cart once made an attempt at blending their Mexican fare with the Mediterranean favorite. But a dedicated storefront to gyros, shawarma, kebob, falafel, and other middle eastern fare? Fuhgettaboutit! Welcome to the neighborhood, Ishtar Gate! The mostly-take-out restaurant now occupies the former Tacos Chavez space at 5222 SE Foster.

Screen Shot 2017-05-07 at 7.43.55 PM.png– As we shared recently, Raven Ink Tattoo is no longer operating in the space next to Da Hui. And, in fact, the building, which also includes the tailor shop next door, is for sale. And while we’ve seen million-dollar properties hit the market recently on Foster, this space may be a little more affordable for those looking to set up shop in the neighborhood. According to the real estate listing, the property at 6514 SE Foster is on the market for $429,000. Less than half a million for prime space in the “Heart of Foster?” Not too shabby. The question is: who’s gonna get it first….

– In other real estate news, the proposal to redevelop the YMCA property at 6036 SE Foster has been approved (with conditions) by the city’s Bureau of Development Services. We’re not sure what the next steps are, but it would appear Foster is one step closer to seeing much needed housing built along the corridor. And for those that haven’t been following, here’s our most recent post on the project.


City of Portland Archives — Here’s what the once vacant lot used to look like at 72nd and Foster (from Firland Parkway–Maple Leaf would be to the right)

– And a little further east on Foster, another large-scale development is under permit review. The 72F project is inching closer to fruition, and the neighborhood will net 101 affordable housing units and 10,000 square-feet of retail space as a result. This should round out the transformation of SE 72nd and Foster, kissing goodbye to the last remnants of the former Metro Auto Wholesale operation and vacant lots that tarnished the history of this intersection. (For shits and giggles, here’s the lone Yelp review of Metro Auto Wholesale.)

– And finally, Second Saturday Foster Art Walk is this weekend. We’ll have a follow-up post on this later in the week, but you should probably just go ahead and include the art walk in your Saturday plans. If the weather’s good, even better. This is a fun way to stop in to some art galleries that open specifically for this event; support neighborhood businesses; and show some love for the Foster arts scene.


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Happy Weekend, Foster People!

Here we are, the last weekend in April and a third of the way through 2017. Yowza. Time really flies when shrouded in gray and wet. Hopefully this weekend brings the weather-change needed for our collective mental and emotional well being.

Here are your weekend tidbits…

– We noted several months ago that the former Paldo Market space was slated for a remodel and change-in-use to become a restaurant and brewery. It was a couple months later that New School Beer confirmed the plans by including the hypothetical “Foster Brewery” as one it’s most anticipated new breweries in 2017. And if anyone wants double confirmation, Steelhead Architecture has the brewery listed on its “projects” page. Now, in the last week alone, we’ve heard from three different people who have  some of the work being done inside the space or heard from those doing the work that the space will, indeed, become a brewery. We don’t know much more than that, but, sadness over Paldo’s departure not withstanding, it’s pretty exciting.

– Next door to Paldo Market, changes may be afoot in the 7-11 and former Winly’s Cash & Carry space. The building is for sale and, as we noted earlier in the week, it comes with a hefty price tag. As expensive as it may be, there’s 42,000 square-feet of Foster-fronting commercial space available. With a brewery now slated to go in next door, a mixed-use apartment building and new childcare facility set to replace the YMCA two doors down, and the Foster Streetscape (kinda) coming closer to reality, perhaps the cost is not that much.

– For those who have looked forward to marching in or spectating the 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade the last decade, it appears there’ll be a break in the tradition this year. The event has been cancelled due to reasons we’re not even interested in getting in to. We’ll simply blame this on our current political climate, as well as the people that now feel emboldened to display hate toward their fellow humans.

– We often talk about the art galleries that participate in Foster’s Second Saturday Art Walk. But we haven’t given Volume Bomb, the guitar, art and record shop located inside the Wikman Building, their propers for contributing to the art scene in the neighborhood. Their collection is not for the faint of heart, but we applaud them pushing the arts. Check ’em out…and get some musical equipment and records, too.

– The Foster-Powell and Mt. Scott-Arleta joint neighborhood cleanup is next Saturday. Time to get rid of all your junk. More info here.

Here’s your weekend entertainment:
Starday Tavern- Lucas Benoit (6 pm) and Soul Night! (9 pm), Friday; Buttercup/Pistol Whiplash/Happy Little Trees, Saturday at 9 pm; BLEND w/Albondigas & Friends, Sunday at 9 pm
Performance Works NW- Appalachian Spring Break, Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m.
SMART Collective- Ruined It/Kick It/Dead Country/P.R.O.B.L.E.M.S., Saturday at 7 p.m.
NWIPA- Fluffy IPA Can Release, Friday at 6 p.m.

Enjoy the weekend, y’all…

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Another Foster commercial space goes on the market

Here it is, folks, the moment you’ve all been waiting for: an opportunity to spend $2.75 million on Foster-fronting commercial space. And by space, we mean 42,000 square-feet of it.

It’s not a blank slate. It’s not even historic or with some aesthetic appeal. Nor does it scream ‘potential.’ But if you like strip plazas, are keen on having 7-11 as a tenant/neighbor, and can stand to part with a few million bucks, we’ve got a property for you.


Google Maps — 6144 SE Foster

According to LoopNet, 6144 SE Foster is for sale. And with a whopping $2.75 million price tag, you should come with some grand ideas. Or at least ideas that don’t involve bulk food-buying, mattresses, or a bankrupt movie rental business (RIP Blockbuster). Yes, Winly’s Cash & Carry, Sleep World and Blockbuster Video, have all made a home in this space over the last several years. None, obviously, have stuck around.

Here’s where you and your $2.75 million can make a difference.

Want some ideas?

Places to eat are typically well received in this neighborhood. So are alternatives to convenience stores and Fred Meyer. Foster could use a community bank. A nursery would be nice, too, since 7 Dee’s is closing nearby. A compact, three-lane bowling alley and bar? I’d even be happy to see a resurrection of New Copper Penny, fully intact with disco dance floor. The options are endless, really; it’s just the price tag that may be a hurdle.


Renderings of a once-proposed renovation to 6144 SE Foster

We’re not sure what a potential sale means for the renovations that were planned for the  building, as we discussed in December. Nor do we know for certain if the whole building is for sale, or just the unoccupied portion (though, at 42,000 square-feet, we’ll presume it’s the entire building). It’s interesting to note, too, that the former Paldo Market space (according to Portland Maps) recently sold to a new owner. Combined, there’s a lot of Foster property exchanging hands. What becomes of them remains to be seen.

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Happy Weekend, Foster People!

There’s word we’ll hit 70-degrees today. I’ll take it…even if it means we have to endure a wet and gray Saturday and Sunday (which we will). Have fun this weekend, y’all.

Here are your weekend tidbits…

– I guess the big news is that Off The Griddle will officially be open tomorrow. The highly anticipated addition of another place to dine and drink should make for a lot of happy people. And, most likely, our strip will get a little bit more vibrant as a result. Tomorrow’s grand opening will be celebrated with happy hour prices all day, as well as vegan jello shots, from 3 – 11 p.m.

– We wrote yesterday about the supposed development potential of the Mt. Scott Fuel site, as advertised in a real estate listing for a neighboring property. We have no reason to believe the soil and rock operation is going anywhere, but it’s an interesting thought. They certainly wouldn’t be our first choice for businesses to leave the area, but I suppose the potential for its 3.8 acres is real (or speculated).

– As pointed out by Next Portland’s weekly look at proposed developments across the city, early assistance has been requested for a project envisioned at 3612 SE 82nd. Currently a vacant building once occupied by the Farm House restaurant, plans for the lot call for a mix of indoor restaurant space (for up to nine tenants) and parking for food carts outside. More details will emerge soon, we’d think. But for now, this is a fun idea for a stretch of 82nd that could use some energy and investment.

– The Foster-Powell Community Garden has evolved a lot over the last four years, when it was just an idea hatched by a few neighbors who sought to transform an ODOT-owned lot which once housed a gas station at 62nd and Powell. Here we are now, and it’s a beautiful, fully functioning community garden with several garden plots, community gathering and event space, a water catchment system, and abundant color. After years of handwork, love and labor, the original and longtime hosts/organizers/care-takers of the lot, Vicki Wilson and John Larsen, are handing the garden over to new and willing hands as they embark on other ventures and pursuits. We wanted to take a moment to thank them for all they’ve done for the neighborhood—not just in creating a community garden, but by beautifying our environment (they’re also the ones behind the Foster Window Project), bringing people and energy together, and being great stewards of the 62nd/Powell site. You can read more (here) about the growth and changes in the garden, as well as Vicki and John’s transition.

We’re skipping the “weekend entertainment” this week. As far as we know, though, you can probably count on live music at Starday Tavern. But you shouldn’t stop there—check out all that Foster has to offer this weekend, from bars and restaurants to book stores, game stores, furniture and skating apparel, and art galleries.

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What a residential real estate listing may tell us about the future of Foster…

Perhaps we’re reading into things a bit here, but a recent neighborhood real estate listing seems to reveal what the future of Mt. Scott Fuel may be.

Screen Shot 2017-04-20 at 7.34.54 AM

5027 SE 70th – PortlandMaps

The property in question sits at the southeast corner of Mt. Scott Fuel, and, while currently inhabited by a 1,900 square-foot bungalow, it is being touted as a development opportunity. The house at 5027 SE 70th sits in the CG Zone, which allows for more dense development. But that is not the only reason this listing is being marketed as a “development opportunity.” The 5,000 square-foot lot is not huge, and as such would not leave much room for a large apartment building given current zoning. But the listing does point to the neighboring Mt. Scott Fuel as partial reason for the lot’s development potential. To expand, the listing on LoopNet suggests the vast soil and gravel operation next door has “massive commercial potential.” And while that’s true, and, yes, a developer could do a lot with 3.8 acres in the heart of a growing neighborhood business district, it’s interesting that there’s no public indication that Mt. Scott Fuel plans to abandon their operation.

So why use the Mt. Scott Fuel site as a lure for development?

We know real estate agents have their marketing schemes; ploys to over-hype their properties, if you will. And perhaps this is the case at 5027 SE 70th. But it’s not like plans have been announced to sell of the property. And there’s nothing tangible to point to like the Foster Streetscape Plan or the development of other nearby properties. It’s pure speculation.

Screen Shot 2017-04-20 at 7.33.03 AM

PDC map of FLIP framework. Mt. Scott Fuel is listed as a “catalyst site.”

But if we dig a little and revisit the Portland Development Commission’s former (5-year-old) vision—the Foster Lents Integration Partnership (FLIP)—to promote growth along the Foster corridor, we can actually see that the development of the Mt. Scott Fuel site is not a new idea. In fact, the PDC identified the Mt. Scott Fuel property as a “catalyst site” five years ago when the city was more active along the corridor. Much of the city’s resources have been focused on the development of the Lents Town Center, though, and it’s unclear how much FLIP still guides the city’s goals for the rest of the corridor.

So the question remains: does someone know something about the future of the Mt. Scott Fuel site? Or is this just a realtor’s marketing ploy?

We might conclude by also pointing out that the LoopNet listing suggests, too, that the property for sale could be used a dispensary if not developed into a mid-rise apartment complex. So there’s that.

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Happy Weekend, Foster People!

We hear rumor of a possible flirting with 70-degree temperatures Sunday. We could probably end our Friday post with that and feel very positive about how we’re sending you off into the weekend. We do have a few bits of news and events, though, so we’re not cutting it short quite yet.

Here are your weekend tidbits…

– Off The Griddle has finally announced an opening date, and it appears as if Foster will have a new place to dine and drink in just over a week. The new vegan restaurant will be  opening April 22, and they’ll prove to be more than just a veggie burger joint. As per Eater PDX, the menu will feature their signature veggie burgers, yes, but also a host of vegan mac & cheeses, a vegan fried chicken sandwich, 10 beers on tap, and an 80’s/90’s themed cocktail list. I suppose it won’t be long before everyone forgets about Double Treble (though, we’ll assume many of you already have).

– The Foster-Powell Community Garden is hosting its annual plant sale and raffle this Sunday. From 9 a.m to 3 p.m., there will be a selection of plants for sale; a raffle; easter egg hunt for the kids; and a painting project to help add more flare to the garden space. If you have plants you’d like to donate, drop-offs will be taken Saturday, 9-3. The plant sale and raffle helps cover expenses for the garden and keeps it available to the community. Check it out (more info here).

– Portland Mercado turns two! What a difference they’ve made to Foster, with the vibrancy, culinary treats, community gatherings and cultural events, and the amenities the market provides for the neighborhood. The Mercado’s mark on the community cannot be denied, and their presence is absolutely one of the best things about our neighborhood. Celebrate with them Saturday, from 12 – 7 p.m. There will be food, drink, music, faceprinting, and lots and lots of revelry. Details here.

– We wrote earlier in the week about PBOT’s dilemma of getting the Foster Streetscape Plan rolling. Delays have become commonplace, and we posted about the latest one here. On a related note, the city just decreased the speed limit on a dangerous stretch of Hawthorne…perhaps that would be a nice temporary fix for Foster?

Here’s your weekend entertainment:
Starday Tavern- Texadrine w/Billy Kennedy (6 pm) and Joshua James & The Runaway Trains (9 pm), Friday; Urban Shaman (Ben’s B-day Party), Saturday at 9 pm
SMART Collective- WEEP WAVE//The Macks//Beatrix Sky//Airport, Friday from 6 to 9 pm
Portland Mercado- El Pueblo Unido: Portland Mercado 2 Year Anniversary, Saturday from noon to 7 pm
Flat Blak- This|Thusness, art showing by Adam Friedman, Saturday from 6 to 9 pm
FoPo Community Garden- Plant sale and raffle, Sunday from 9 am to 3 pm

Enjoy the weekend, all….

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