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July 2015 -- Vol. 109, No. 11

Memories of THE BEE's first 100 years!
In 2006, THE BEE celebrated its centennial of serving Southeast Portland!  A special four-page retrospective of Inner Southeast Portland's century, written by Eileen Fitzsimons, and drawn from the pages of THE BEE over the previous 100 years, appeared in our September, 2006, issue.
Click here to read this special retrospective!


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Daily news!  The all-new daily PORTLAND TRIBUNE website  is updated throughout the day, every day, when news breaks out.  Click the banner at left to keep up to date on the banner news throughout the Rose City!

THE BEE has a second website -- it's searchable for past stories.  The content for the current month is similar to this one, presented in a different format.  To visit the other website, click the banner at right!






Bicyclist hit, Powell Boulevard, 26th Avenue, Cleveland High School
Paramedics tend to the most recent bicyclist struck down at S.E. 26th Avenue at Powell Boulevard. As in the previous cases, a vehicle turning left from 26th struck a bicyclist proceeding with the green light. (Photo courtesy of KPTV-12 News)

Another bicyclist injured on Powell at CHS prompts ODOT action

By DAVID F. ASHTON
for THE BEE

Less than three weeks after a bicyclist lost his leg when hit by a pickup in front of Cleveland High on S.E. 26th Avenue at Powell Boulevard, another bike rider was injured on May 29 at the same place, at 11:12 am.

“A bicycle rider was struck by a Jeep Cherokee at 26th Avenue and Powell Boulevard,” confirmed Portland Police spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson.

The latest victim, 37-year-old Peter Anderson, was sent to a Portland hospital for non-life-threatening injuries, Simpson said.

“The vehicle’s driver, 25-year-old Noah Gilbertson, was traveling eastbound on Powell, approaching 26th Avenue,” Simpson said. “Anderson, on his bicycle, was stopped on 26th, northbound, and had begun to cross Powell when he was struck by Gilberton’s Jeep Cherokee.”

After PPB Traffic Division officers completed their investigation, they determined that bicyclist Anderson was crossing the street on a green signal, and thus had the right of way. “Gilbertson was cited for ‘Careless Driving with Serious Injury to a Vulnerable Person’,” Simpson said. 

The following day, May 30, Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) began installing left-turn signals on the north-south axis at the intersection; there were already such signals for east-west travelers.

“This improvement will prohibit left turns [by vehicles] from S.E. 26th when bicycles and pedestrians are crossing the intersection on Powell, and provide a dedicated left-turning phase for vehicles turning left onto S.E. Powell Boulevard,” explained ODOT spokesman Don Hamilton.

The new signals were operating two days later, on Monday, June 1.



Milk Carton Boat Races
Winterhaven School student Shea Taylor paddles in his race. (Photo by David F. Ashton)

Milk Carton Regatta resumes at Westmoreland Park 

By DAVID F. ASHTON
for THE BEE

It was sad, but understandable, that the Rose Festival Milk Carton Races were cancelled last year, while their venue – Westmoreland Park – was being renovated.

But the lengthy renovation is done, and on Sunday, June 7, the annual Milk Carton Boat Races at the historic Westmoreland casting pond returned in full force.

Thirty-five boats took part in this year’s regatta, cheered by a crowd of some 2,500 spectators.

“This started in 1973, and we’re really glad to have the races return,” smiled Oregon Dairy Products Commission Senior Director of Communications, Josh Thomas. “We’re also glad to see the support from the community.

“We have, here today, all handmade boats – fashioned out of recycled milk cartons or milk jugs,” Thomas told THE BEE as the races were getting underway. “We have really unique boats, of all shapes and sizes. It’s an awesome and fun spectacle.”

About 100 participants signed up to paddle their boats in the casting pond. Thomas pointed out that the same watercraft can be entered in many classes – from kids to grownups to families.

“It’s amazing how well they float, and how quickly the participants are able to paddle across the pond,” Thomas said.

In heat after heat, spectators watching this Portland Rose Festival sanctioned event saw individuals and groups glide – and sometimes struggle, and even sink – across the casting pond, as they traveled from the east side to the west side across the broad casting pond.

Some races were close, others had decisive victories.

While there was no charge either to participate or to watch, the crowd was encouraged to make donations to Oregon Food Bank through the Northwest Farmers Fighting Hunger campaign.

“As we say, it’s about “raising awareness, food, and funds for summer hunger”, remarked Thomas. After the event, he told us that they’d raised just under $1,000 for the cause.

This year’s winners:

  • Best in Show – Thomas Clute
  • Corporate – Colton Snook, Darigold
  • Children – Hayden Kelly
  • Family/Multi-rider – Brillig Branstrom and Hayden Kelly
  • Adult – Colton Snook
  • Adult Mechanical Advantage – Nicolas Salinas

Corporate and Adult classes winner Colton Snook of Milwaukie, told THE BEE he was really glad the races had returned to the Westmoreland Park casting pond. “My dad and I have done this for a couple of years in the past. It’s a lot of fun!”



Baby falls from window, baby injured
Officials say a baby fell from an open window in a top floor apartment, in this building just south of Powell Boulevard. (Photo by David F. Ashton)

Baby badly injured, after four-story tumble near Powell

By DAVID F. ASHTON
for THE BEE

After a one-year-old baby fell out of a window, four stories above the concrete surface on which it landed, the 9-1-1 Center was flooded with calls at about 4:30 pm on June 17.

Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) paramedics rushed to the apartment building, in the Creston-Kenilworth neighborhood at 3600 S.E. 28th Avenue.

“Firefighter/paramedics worked quickly to stabilize the baby,” said PF&R Public Information Officer Lt. Rich Tyler. “Then the baby was transported to OHSU.”

Detectives are conducting an investigation of the incident, said Portland Police Bureau Public Information Officer Sgt. Pete Simpson, but, “It appears that this may have been simply a tragic turn of events.”

The baby is still in critical condition, Tyler told THE BEE later in the week.

“Window-fall injuries are predictable and preventable,” Tyler commented. “We advise installing window stops that prevent windows from opening more than four inches. Or, installing guards on any windows that pose a fall risk.”

Tyler advised parents of small children to visit a local website dedicated to fall prevention: http://www.stopat4.com.



Sellwood Bridge, concrete forms
A wooden concrete form, used to shape the new Sellwood Bridge’s deck, is hoisted from the work bridge. (Photo by David F. Ashton)

Sellwood Bridge: Deck forms ready for concrete pour

By DAVID F. ASHTON
for THE BEE

Construction work on the new Sellwood Bridge project, high over the Willamette River, is moving along rapidly now. But it’s not as visible as are the changes in Sellwood, at the intersection of S.E. Tacoma Street and 6th Avenue.

“Contractors are rebuilding the intersection, and adding a traffic signal,” explained Multnomah County project spokesman Mike Pullen.

“Currently the work is on the north side of Tacoma Street,” Pullen pointed out. “Work here has impacted the public coming and going to Oaks [Amusement] Park and Sellwood Riverview Park.”

But, by the time the July 4th holiday weekend rolls around, the underground work should be completed in that area, Pullen told THE BEE. “Then, they will be transitioning to working on the south side of Tacoma Street during the summer months.”

Leading us on a tour into the construction area below the bridge, Pullen pointed out that contractors were lifting one pre-made wooden concrete form after another from the work bridge. A crane lifted each segment around the side of the arches and girders, and lowered each form segment on top of the newly forming bridge.

“They’re installing the forms from east to west,” Pullen said. “Right now [on June 17], they’re working their way across the bridge, covering Span 5, to the west of center on the bridge.”

Unseen to all but construction workers, the “perched box caissons”, driven into the riverbed to build the mid-river piers, will be dismantled in July. “What will be visible, will be the staining of the concrete river piers,” Pullen said. “Starting in July, they’ll have more of rust-colored appearance, similar to the rust patina now on the steel arches.”

About the budget, Pullen commented: “When we last updated the public about the budget for the project, we said that we were expecting to go as much as $10 million over the $307.5 million budget. Our expectations are that we will be hitting the upper part of that boundary.

“So at this time, we’re still within that figure, but it's getting close to topping out at the 3½ percent overage,” Pullen reported. “We can't point to any specific new causes for the increasing price, other than it is a very complicated and challenging project.”



Bicyclist hit by truck, bike fatality, Gladstone Street, tow truck crash
All traffic was blocked for a time, on S.E. Chavez Blvd (39th) at Gladstone Street, after a bicyclist was struck and killed in the intersection by the turning tow truck stopped at left. The victim, Mark Angeles (shown inset), was a highly-regarded 2015 graduate of Reed College. (Photo by David F. Ashton; inset courtesy of Reed College website)

Reed student killed in bike crash right after graduation

By DAVID F. ASHTON
for THE BEE

A week after 22-year-old Mark Angeles graduated from Reed College with a major in chemistry, the bicycle enthusiast was out for a noontime ride in the Creston-Kenilworth neighborhood.

According to officials, Angeles was westbound on S.E. Gladstone Street on May 27, and was passing through the intersection of Chavez Blvd. (39th St.) on a green signal. “At 12:02 pm, a tow truck, towing a silver four-door sedan, was facing eastbound on Gladstone waiting to turn left (northbound),” said Portland Police spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson.

“The truck collided with the bicycle in the intersection,” Simpson added. “The tow truck driver was identified as 40-year-old Jolene Friedow of Estacada.”

An employee of the Texaco gas station at the intersection said he looked up when he heard the collision. “I ran over to see how I could help the man who was riding the bike. By the time I got several feet away, I could see he was really injured; and he wasn’t moving. There was nothing I could do for him. Yes, he was wearing a helmet.”

Angeles was pronounced dead at the scene. The Medical Examiner later announced that he died of blunt force head trauma.

The truck, marked “North Oregon Towing”, was stopped on S.E. Chavez Boulevard (39th), about 50 feet north of Gladstone Street. Friedow stayed at the scene and cooperated with PPB Traffic Division Major Crash Team investigators. “Impairment does not appear to be a factor in this crash,” Simpson said.

According to social media reports, Angeles, a native of Colorado Springs, Colorado, loved cycling, and was the manager of the Reed College Bike Co-op.

“As a result of his many accomplishments, Angeles was recognized as one of Reed’s ‘12 for 2015’,” said Reed College Vice President and Dean of Students Mike Brody in the school’s online newspaper. “He was well-known and well-loved throughout campus.” 

As of this writing, Friedow has not been arrested or cited, Simpson later said. However, the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office has received the casework, and will consider possible charges.



MAX light rail, kids ride on MAX, Orange Line, MAX
A new TriMet MAX train pulls into the Clinton Street Station, just north of the Brooklyn neighborhood. (Photo by David F. Ashton)

Youngsters get their first MAX ride in Inner Southeast

By DAVID F. ASHTON
for THE BEE

Some elementary school “field trips” are better than others. Although the field trip for 250 students and staff members from Abernethy Elementary School was simply to ride on mass transit, everyone looked enthusiastic and excited about the June 9 excursion.

“We’re meeting these students here on S.E. 12th Ave at the TriMet MAX Orange Line Clinton Station,” recounted tour guide TriMet Sr. Community Affairs Representative Coral Egnew.

“The students will be practicing their ‘safe behaviors’, such as using the crosswalks and looking both ways as they cross the roads or railroad tracks, and as they cross Tilikum Crossing, ‘Bridge of the People’,” Egnew told THE BEE.

“Because many of these children, and their families, are likely to start riding our new MAX line, we’re educating the students about how to be safe coming to, and riding on, a MAX train.

“And, because they’ll take the information they learn here home with them and share it with their families,” Egnew continued, “these safety messages will reach an even wider audience.”

Right on schedule, at 1 pm, a brand new Orange Line train glided into the station. Under the watchful eye of their teachers and TriMet staff, the kindergarten through fifth graders boarded it for their ride. 

Many of the kids scrambled to find the “best seat” in the coach; others chose to experience the ride standing, and holding on to the safety rails.

When Egnew signaled the operator, TriMet MAX Light Rail Training Supervisor Rick Jones, he released the train’s brakes and slid forward the throttle.

Little faces were pressed against the windows as the shiny new train glided down into the Southeast Industrial area, coming to a brief stop at the Opera Station.

“Ooooohs” and “ahhhhhs” filled the cabin as the train soared over the Willamette River on the new Tilikum Crossing bridge.

Stopping at the South Waterfront Station, the kids disembarked and were directed to the southern sidewalk, where a representative of Doernbecher Children’s Hospital gave the group additional safety information.

Then, the kids scrambled back into the train for a return ride across the transit-only bridge, and back to the starting point in Hosford-Abernethy.

His eyes still expressively large after the trip, Luke, a fourth-grader at Abernethy Elementary, told THE BEE about his experience. “I think this was really exciting,” he said. “Mainly, it’s something to know that I was one of the first people to go over this bridge on a train. This is a really new kind of modern type bridge.

“The best thing about it, in my opinion,” Luke added, “was that the train was really cool and new. I've never been on a train that new before!”

When school starts again in September, kids and everyone will have the opportunity to experience regularly riding across the Willamette River on a new MAX train.



Sewer construction, pipe bursting
Inch-by-inch, the new high density polyethylene pipe was pulled into the street, nearly a block away from the underground pulling rig. (Photo by David F. Ashton)

“Sewer-busters” are bursting through Sellwood

By DAVID F. ASHTON
for THE BEE

“Why is that big black plastic tube running in front of our house for a block on S.E. Lambert Street?”

That’s the question Sellwood resident and BEE reader Henrik Bothe asked himself when he went on a Sunday morning walk May 17. He snapped a photo of the pipe and sent it to this reporter. But he went on to answer his own question.

Being curious, and an engineer by training, Bothe then spoke with members of the sewer construction crew, at work a couple of blocks east of his house, between S.E. 15th and 16th Avenues. He learned that the Portland Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) is using a relatively new technique on his street.

“Yes, they’re using a sewer construction technique called ‘pipe bursting’,” confirmed BES Public Information Officer Linc Mann.

“Crews dig an access pit and insert a ‘bursting head’ into an existing sewer pipe. The head breaks up the old pipe and pulls new pipe into place behind it, and the head is retrieved from a second access pit.

“After the new sewer is in place, work crews connect each house to the new sewer main,” Mann told THE BEE.

This “trenchless technology” avoids the disruption of digging a trench in the middle of the street to install a new sewer main, Mann pointed out. “And it costs less than traditional trench construction, and is far quicker.”

The foreman on-site said that once the replacement pipe segments have been “heat welded” together, and the access trenches have been dug at both ends, it takes about a day for them to replace the line. Customers are temporarily hooked back up that very evening.

Depending upon the street, workers are replacing iron pipe as old as eighty to one hundred years with high density polyethylene (HDPE), a durable and long-lasting material now commonly used in new sewer construction.

So, if you see a “big black snake” lying in your own street, be advised that it will soon be replacing an old service line buried underground, through the work of modern-day “sewer-busters”.



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