Rose City Collective grants help damaged downtown businesses

Civic Affairs

Grant money was raised by the Rose City Downtown Collective

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Boarded-up small businesses in downtown Portland are getting some desperately needed financial help to replace broken windows. But it’s not from their insurance companies. It’s from other downtown business owners.

The grants come from Rose City Downtown Collective, a group of downtown businesses and organizations trying to do something the city’s elected leaders have not — restore Portland’s downtown.

Louella Scott, the owner of Flowers Tommy Luke in South Portland, was among the 22 businesses getting a $1000 grant. That will help her finally replace her windows and take down the plywood that’s been there since May 29 — the very first night of rioting following the death of George Floyd.

The windows at Flowers Tommy Luke in South Portland have been boarded up since March 2020. They remain boarded as of March 2, 2021 (KOIN)

The windows have been boarded up ever since. Scott said getting financial help from other Portland businesses really puts a spring in her step.

“It’s very encouraging to be a small business owner and to see that other small businesses are gathering together to help each other and to help revive our beautiful city that’s been so badly damaged,” she said.

Cycle PDX in Old Town is also getting a grant which will pay to replace graffiti-covered film on the storefront windows.

“That’s really huge, all the businesses in Old Town that are still with us are banding together,” said James Kelly from Cycle PDX.

The windows at Cycle PDX in Old Town was damaged by graffiti during protests in Portland, March 2, 2021 (KOIN)

The grant money was raised by the Rose City Downtown Collective after learning that most business insurance was not covering broken windows in Portland. That’s one of the main reasons windows have been boarded up for the past 9 months.

In the coming weeks, it’s expected more boards will be coming down from storefronts — and the grant money from the Rose City Downtown Collective is a big part of that change.

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