Mayor meets with downtown businesses to talk livability



Mayor meets with downtown businesses to talk livability

Representatives of the Portland business community packed Portland City Council chambers on Nov. 21 to hear from elected leaders and local officials about growing livability issues and plans to address the impacts.
Representatives of the Portland business community packed Portland City Council chambers on Nov. 21 to hear from elected leaders and local officials about growing livability issues and plans to address the impacts. Mayor Ted Wheeler, Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury, Multnomah County District Attorney Rod Underhill, Multnomah County Sheriff Mike Reese, Portland Police Chief Danielle Outlaw, and Marc Jolin, head of the Joint Office of Homeless Services were in attendance. At the meeting, Mayor Wheeler announced he is implementing the first of two phases of new high-pedestrian zones that give the police additional tools to address illegal behavior in the Central City. The high-pedestrian designation will allow police to prioritize their response to livability issues, like camping on sidewalks, drug use and public indecency. The increased safety efforts will also be accompanied by additional police walking beats. While the security measures are focused in the Central City, the mayor’s office is also working on solutions for these issues in outlying neighborhoods. The Alliance has long advocated for additional high-pedestrian zones to address illegal behaviors and worked with the mayor’s office to identify priority locations for them.