Testimonials

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This impacts every single resident of Eastmoreland, but the historic district is being rammed through by ENA without full disclosure of restrictions and effects. And we've not seen an honest and comprehensive attempt to inform the cons as well as the pros of this effort. One neighborhood meeting doesn't cut it for something this far reaching. In addition, ENA has yet to develop a legitimate plan to ensure that every homeowner gets an opportunity to vote on this. All this raises serious questions. If the goal is to protect our tree canopy – a noble goal – then the ENA should be doing more with neighborhood funds to inoculate our aging elms from disease and work with Friends of the Trees and the city forester to inventory our aging maples that have been falling on a regular basis because of age (four grand old maples have fallen on our block, including ours, in just the past several years). The save-the-sequoias effort was impressive, but imagine what Eastmoreland could do to expand that to all of our trees. Rather than be divisive like this effort has become, Eastmoreland could come together to protect our trees and plant new ones for the next generation. Bottom line: A historic district designation is the latest attempt by a small group of organizers in ENA to build a moat around Eastmoreland to keep people out. We have lived here for 18 years, and we want to see a vital neighborhood that attracts young families, is more affordable and more diverse. — Chris and Mary Gay Broderick

There are regulations in place that govern how I may use my property. Arbitrary regulation by an undemocratic body is not appropriate in the context of our neighborhood. — Brad McMurchie

I don't want a subjective review panel making decisions about how I can upgrade and maintain my home, while charging me extra for it. — Jessica Canales

It's a huge, permanent change to the neighborhood. — Randy Franks

I would like to make my own choices regarding property I own. — Nancy Brown

Too many potential restrictions on what we can do with our home. — Karl Lucke

I feel owning property is one of the oldest American dreams. I feel the existing land use laws are sufficient to dictate what you can do with your land. Furthermore, I think several of the new homes in Eastmoreland add architectural richness to the neighborhood. There are several homes I would love to see torn down and rebuilt.  — Melissa Wyman

I am a second generation Eastmorelander raising my third generation EN children here. I believe in progress and improvements in our neighborhood that will retain the values of the homes. I live here and not in a gated community or HOA because I do not want to be dictated to about my property by others. There is freedom of expression and use in this neighborhood and THAT is its history. Having been a past member of the ENA, I am very much opposed to the current board, its president, and its mission. I also want to stress that Eastmoreland is up to SE 36th and 36th to 39th is Berkeley. The Berkeley area was developed with smaller lots for future smaller homes so that there could be infill making homes affordable for new families to the area and older folks who wanted to downsize and stay in the neighborhood. That is also Portland's current mission with neighborhoods. I am a former designer and general contractor and have built a home in Eastmoreland and done many remodels. My own parents home was built on a divided lot in 1996. Eastmoreland already has enough building restrictions. — Deborah Gaslin

First of all, I don't think the neighborhood is "historic" in the true sense. I sense that this effort is merely an effort to do an end run on new construction since the zoning opposition didn't go the way the ENA wished. New construction isn't always a bad thing and this "designation" will put undue burden not only new builds but on remodeling and other upgrades - which are really not "the neighborhood's" business. Yes, Eastmoreland is a lovely place to live but it is still a neighborhood. It's not a gated community; we don't pay HOA fees. These are individually owned and maintained dwellings and we should not be pressed into this by a neighborhood association that has taken on too broad a reach. — Paula Stratton

It is a permanent and poor solution to a very specific problem. I oppose any greater interference with private property ownership rights than we already endure with the City zoning and permit agencies. Adding a neighborhood design review committee is overkill and then some; it will not further good relations within the neighborhood to be told no, you can't add a dormer to make a usable attic, change your landscape to add some privacy from the street or simply paint your house a color that pleases you.  Vote no on this ill conceived plan to stop lot splitting. There are less intrusive ways to accomplish that goal. — Chris Blattner

I own a home in Eastmoreland. I don't want more expensive / time consuming approvals for any changes I may want to make to my home in the future. — Monica Kaul

As an architect and resident of the neighborhood for twenty years, I don't believe that designating Eastmoreland as a historic district will necessarily improve the quality or character of our neighborhood. In fact these processes will likely squelch creativity and may be more easily navigated by the builders they aim to hinder, rather than by individual home owners. — Liz Dexter

We live in an area where the homes (while beautiful) require attention and maintenance to keep them up and I don't think that imposing more regulations to make improvements is the right direction for our neighborhood. I'm not "for" home demolitions – particularly lot-splitting – but I'm opposed to the idea of using a historic designation as a means of preventing this is in Eastmoreland.  — Anonymous

Restrictive, elite, ridiculous, backward looking. — Paul DeYoung

I don't want to be dictated as to the upkeep, style and changes to my house. — Mark Blanchard

Makes maintaining an old home more difficult and expensive which may not then 'preserve' the neighborhood. — Susan Walsh

I think residents should be asked in advance before the application is made. — Rosalie McDougall

I believe it will put undue restrictions on my use of my property and on all homeowners in the neighborhood. — Julie McMurchie

High Cost, design restrictions, uncertainty of "what is allowed and what not". — Rita Jacobson

Change is good. I don't want restrictions imposed. — Alexandra Brown

For financial reasons. — Bonnie Kilwein

I do not want to have my property governed by a board of members. For those of you who want to be dictated to about what you can and can not do regarding your rights as a property owner, I suggest that you individually apply for your home to designated as a historic property. There is no guarantee that forming a historic district will prevent land splitting. — Lynne Field

I want to remodel my house and don't want additional expense and labor. — Dan Pence

It would make our community more exclusive and less welcoming. Rather than working to restrict growth, the ENA should promote local economic and social diversity which benefits everyone. I support intelligent land use planning for Oregon and increased infill for Portland; therefore I oppose the proposed historic district. — J. Sweeney

I have spent many years researching the NHPA regarding a vacation cabin I own which was found eligible for the National Register in a secret process which was in violation of federal law. This is actually not unusual and has been documented by Dr. Thomas King who has written many books on historic preservation and is a nationally recognized expert who is also critical of the illegal processes used by special interests. Regarding Eastmoreland I am less upset than some by the few demolitions and am unsure about the value of trading bad city council policy for bad National Register policy. Even if Eastmoreland residents eventually decide to proceed I would like to see the timeline stretched to allow more time for education. I have a generally good ability to analyze complex regulations but 36 CFR 800 and the other pertinent regulations are unbelievably confusing. It seems to be common practice nationally for the historic preservation industry to push through surveys as fast as possible to avoid opposition. The industry is plagued by unemployment and favors historic districts over individual buildings because an individual homeowner can choose to end their historic status at any time, while even a non-contributing home in a historic district is subject to restrictions on changes. The original concept of allowing historic districts was to preserve groups of ornate older buildings in the downtown core areas of cities, not residential neighborhoods. There is a process for revoking historic districts but only if the work was done illegally or unprofessionally, and even then it almost never succeeds. As an aside, I installed 9 solar panels facing the street and vinyl double-pane windows in 2008 and possibly will be non-contributing if this goes ahead. — Norman Goetz

There is not enough information as to how it will affect the neighborhood, its landowners, and home improvements. — Colin Folawn

1. This is about a small group of people trying to tell everybody else what we can and can't do to fix up our homes. 2. The ENA board doesn't have the authority to do this without the consent of all the home owners impacted by this. 3. The ENA board is spending $55,000 to $60,000 on this, which amounts to the entire ENA reserves without even asking members if they want to spend the money this way. This is financially irresponsible. 4. Historic designation will impose undue burdens on all the home owners in the neighborhood who try to fix up their homes. — Scott Meyer

It would further restrict the use of my property, increase government control & regulation of my property, increase the cost of making minor changes/improvements to my property by having to pay the City more money, would give City Bureaucrats more control in deciding whether a basic repair could be made & whether the repair was considered maintenance or an improvement, encourage neighborhood vigilantes, potentially pit neighbor against neighbor, discourage lower income &/or young families from purchasing homes, the neighborhood is not "Historic" as my home in the center of the neighborhood was built in 1948, discouage diversity of architecture & new home design, etc. — Ed Marihart

These new restrictions are being pushed by an elitist, out-of-control neighborhood association board. They do not represent the best interests of the neighborhood at large nor have they operated with openness or full disclosure regarding the source or adequacy of funds to pay for the historic survey which, upon completion, can be filed by anyone who wishes to do so. This is clearly a very divisive “taking” of homeowner’s property rights. We do not want a few renegade “volunteers” regulating how we decide to manage and improve our homes in the future. — George Marvin

People should be able to do whatever they want to their own property — Jordan Grossman

An individual's property rights should not be infringed upon by a non-governmental, unelected committee. The Historic District is both reactionary and short-sighted. The diversity in homes is part of what makes this neighborhood so great, but not the most important part, that would be its people.  — Dana T. Hori

It's an over reaching answer for the problem we are trying to solve. — d.lt@me.com

Restrictions and potential costs for home remodels could be too high in a historic district. I dislike the idea of many of the restrictions against common ownership freedoms. I also dislike the current trend of destruction of the character of our neighborhood. — Ken Hochfeld

I do not like the fact that we will see extra money & time imposed on the cost of projects we may wish to do to our homes. I own the home & should be able to take care of it as I see fit without many rules & regulations on what I can do. I also feel like this designation will become a very divsive and controversial issue in the neighborhood that I have lived in and loved for many years. Is it worth that? I have really only seen homes rebuilt above 36th that we don't believe fit into the Eastmoreland neighborhood. And that is technically out of Eastmoreland proper, I believe. I guess I should also add that the times are changing and people want different styles of homes! Thank you for listening! — Karlyn Zografos

I support density in the city and affordable housing. Eastmoreland will be a better neighborhood if it includes families of varied incomes. Also, I want to be able to improve my home without neighborhood oversight. — Kathy Fishler

I do not wish for others to impose their ideas of style/standard on my home. — Hanh Nguyen

Individuals should be able to make their own decisions about their own home and do so without the undue burden of extra fees and review. — Kelly Nguyen

This is not the best way to solve the problems we are concerned about. — Diane Lucas

It will limit the diversity in the area. — Emma Christ

The process by which the ENA board is pursuing it is not transparent or accountable. — Ralph Bodenner

It violates my freedom of choice. I own and live in the oldest home in the neighborhood. Having to jump through hoops and paying fees to renovate my home is not something that is fair to someone who has spent 16 years maintaining a 135 year old house. — Patrick Mendola

It is the wrong tool for the objective. The Historic District designation does not target developers, demolitions, lot sizes or tree canopies. Rather, its impact is to restrict changes to the exterior of every single home in its district. Including yours, no matter how tasteful your style. The historic designation bootstraps and PENALIZES EVERY CURRENT AND FUTURE HOMEOWNER, even those wanting to do a small renovation to their own home to be able to stay in the neighborhood. It does not discern modest from wealthy homeowners. It is felt by every single homeowner seeking to make even a small exterior change to the home they already live in. If demolitions and lot sizes are your objectives and targets, please know – this is not the tool for those jobs. — Cynthia McCann

We’ve lived in Eastmoreland since 1984 and year by year the neighborhood has become more established, desired, and beautiful – all without a designation such as the now-proposed historic district that will place restrictions on some (NOT ALL), will require oversight and mandate fees, and may keep young families out because they aren’t allowed to add on. Further I object to the way this has been proposed and hurried by the ENA Board with thousands of dollars of Association monies spent without a true consensus. We are a bright bunch who will preserve the quality of our homes and the evolution of our neighborhood without this burden. — Cindy Simon

There are much better ways to protect our neighborhood than setting up an "animal farm" style committee to decide what is best for my property and my neighbors property. — Kirk Thornby

It diminishes the opportunities build a community that embraces economic, social and racial diversity. — Jane Williams-Grubbe

I oppose the historic district because I grew up and lived there for 21 years. I loved my home and being able to change it as my needs changed. Renovating the house with my father was one of the coolest times. I learned how to work on a house, clean gutter, and build a shed. Small but simple memories that gave me tools for life. Don't take this away from kids and families who will live there now and in the future. — Travis Taylor

Increase in Fees, Property taxes. Less rights as a property owner to make changes to my home and my yard. — Eric Mitchell

We do not want the limitations that come along with a historical designation. If we ever want to sell our property or do any renovations, we feel that the designation will put us at a disadvantage. Our home is not of historical significance and does not warrant the special designation. We can see that there may be more of a case for a historical designation in certain areas of Eastmoreland, but not the area of Eastmoreland that we live in. — Lyndon & Kathleen Borden

I want to control what happens to my home. — Kevin McCall

We will be unable to make the modifications to our home that we would like to, even though they will make the front of our home much more appealing. Also concerning is the fact that the ENA board is rushing into applying for this historical status without taking a vote of the ENTIRE neighborhood and truly knowing whether the majority of homeowners support becoming a historic district or not. This will affect the biggest asset in most peoples lives, and we should ALL be able to have input on such a big decision. It should not be up to a minority to make this decision for the majority. — Linda & Tom Miller

I don't support significant and unreasonable restrictions and barriers to home improvements and changes to our neighborhood. I am also concerned that our neighborhood will become anachronistic as the city grows and changes. — Debbie Menashe

We are a young family who stretched to get into our dream home in Eastmoreland. This district would push our plans to improve and expand our home to accommodate our growing family much farther into the future due to the increased expense imposed by the HD. — Patrick Cummings

The beauty of the neighborhood beyond the trees is the diversity of the homes, old, new and remodeled. It reflects an interesting mix of people, economics and taste, hopefully. I oppose being told what I can and can't do to my home. I would not move to a historic district by choice. — Susan M. Reedy

Designating Eastmoreland an historic district is not a viable solution to any of the concerns. I value our freedom to make choices for our homes and the result of this action would unfairly and severely restrict that end. — Carolyn Gressel

It would negatively impact the resale of my home. — Karen H. Taylor

It is too blunt an instrument to prevent the changes to the neighborhood. — Stephen K. Bache

I would like to see some additional time spent in exploring other options to an historic district, such as deed covenants to prevent lot splitting (which I plan to do), waiting to see if the City Council adopts new house size limits for lots which would make lot splitting less- or un-profitable, or a political campaign to pressure the Council to change its mind on R7 zoning. Although some additional houses may be demoed in the short term the consequences of an historic district are forever for everyone. The meeting on October 4th was excellent on factual answers to everyone's concerns, but besides the specific answers it was important to understand that the many issues of fees and regulations are exceedingly complex and the regulators are always making highly subjective decisions regarding what fees an applicant must pay and what changes to their homes will be allowed. Particularly alarming from the meeting was the experiences of the Irvington neighborhood where the historic surveys were done essentially in secret and at some point long-time owners were told they were now in a historic district, leaving them stunned and angry. 36 CFR 800 is a detailed federal regulation with the force of law which describes an extensive procedure for surveying and deciding eligibility of properties, and central to the process is extensive consultation with property owners. Unfortunately today about 1/3 of these public consultations are skipped and the surveys done as quickly as possible and secretly, and the opportunity to oppose them by submitting an affidavit revealed only after the deadline is passed. Whatever is finally done it is well worth it to pay close attention now to what is happening. — Norman Goetz

I do not want the restrictions on my private property. — Steve Chen

It feels like an HOA with rules to keep everyone in line. Ick. Diversity is a good thing. If one wishes to have their own home registered as an historic home, fine. — Madelon Lewis

This historic district process is particularly onerous, as there is no vote, no requirement to notify people whose homes will very much be affected, and the responsibility for stopping the process is squarely on the backs of those who oppose it. ONE person can start the designation process, but it requires 50% plus one of homeowners to oppose it via a NOTARIZED letter! — Diane Lucas

I oppose the City telling us we can and cannot to our property. — Jane & Ken Robertson