PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — When the City of Portland opened the Peninsula Crossing Safe Rest Village in May, Thomas Karwaki said it was a rough adjustment for neighbors.
Karwaki, the chair of the University Park Neighborhood Association, said Urban Alchemy has done a great job of controlling the activity inside the fence, he said neighbors are concerned about what’s happening just outside the doors.
He said despite the hard open, there has been a lot of improvement since the Safe Rest Village opened its doors.
Neighbors — most of whom are not opposed to the site — plan to have a community meeting Sunday night to discuss some of their concerns and some potential solutions. The goal, he said, is to eventually get a Good Neighbor Agreement signed with the city, vendor and local business to ensure all the stakeholders have a voice.
“A lot of traffic the first week it was open, and you had several overdoses and EMTs and stuff like that that had to come,” Karwaki told KOIN 6 News. “So, that’s been one of the main concerns is the traffic and the noise and then obviously the drug use.”
With only one narrow entrance at Syracuse and Macrum and a nearly-full facility, he said traffic on the street has been a major concern.
“There are some needles. You have children living across the street from this entrance. And so perhaps another entrance would be needed,” he said. “That’s what I think some of the neighbors are possibly going to talk about.”
The community meeting could lead to that Good Neighbor Agreement within 2 weeks, he said.