Making 82nd Avenue a safer and more inviting place benefits the many people who live and work along the route. But it has consequences.
Public investments for better livability can increase market-compelled displacement, where current residents and businesses must relocate because the housing costs and business rents rise faster than their incomes and revenues. Community resources that have built up over years, such as places of worship, community centers and culturally-focused businesses, lose viability as members, users and customers move out of the area.
Even a focus on climate resiliancy – such as investments in heat island deterance, storm water management and incentives to the private sector to green new properties – can accelerate this cycle of displacement. This "green gentrification" starts to price low-income communities, people of color and migrant communities out of their neighborhoods just as the hazardous conditions of the area are starting to be addressed.
Supporting and building up community
It is critical that those who already live and work in the corridor can accrue the benefits that come with new public investment. This includes residents staying in place, small businesses continuing to have opportunities for stability and growth, and working to build generational wealth in communities that have too often been left behind.
A main partner working on these issues is the 82nd Avenue Coalition. Convened by Oregon Walks, Verde, Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO) and Unite Oregon, this coalition is made up of people and organizations that live, work and play along 82nd Avenue. They are tasked, in partnership with Metro, City of Portland and Clackamas County, with developing an Equitable Development Strategy for the entirety of the corridor.
The strategy will focus on how policies and investments that are implemented early on can best help residents and businesses stay in place and thrive, even when market forces start to impact those most vulnerable to displacement.
Learn more or join the coalition