PCRI Completes Urban Plaza Upgrades

June 3, 2014 · by Travis Phillips · Featured, PCRI, Rehabilitations

PCRI is excited to complete improvements to the Urban Plaza property at the corner of N. Russell Street and N. Williams Avenue.  The improvements are funded in part by the Portland Development Commission (PDC) Community Livability Grant program and are focused on creating and improving vibrant and healthy neighborhoods.

Urban Plaza north facadeThe most noticeable improvement funded by the Community Livability Grant was planting of new trees along N. Russell Street and in the parking area adjacent to the building.  The new trees, planted and maintained by local non-profit VERDE Landscape, are more appropriate for the locations where they are planted and have the added benefit of colorful blossoms at different times during the year.  The new trees replace existing gum trees that were damaging the sidewalk, which (along with brittle limbs) had become a safety concern.

The new trees also provide better visibility for the portraits of community leaders displayed on the North façade of the building.  PCRI will add five new portraits to the building in July, 2014.  Those portraits, including one of Charles Jordan, Portland’s first African-American city commissioner, were part of the Black Pioneers luncheon PCRI hosted in December 2013.  The portraits will be formally unveiled at a celebration scheduled for July 10, 2014.

PDC Livability Grant also helped replace part of the building’s roof with a new system which will reduce energy use, addressed deteriorating paint issues on the building’s south wall, and repaired damaged sections of the building’s sidewalks.

The Urban Plaza building is home to 24 units of affordable housing and community-based businesses including the Urban League of Portland, White Men as Full Diversity Partners, and Black Rose Books.

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