Wikman Building Coalition is holding an ALL CALL meeting on
Monday October 21, 2013 6:00 PM Pacific Time
Firland Apartments Community Room, 8012 SE Raymond
to discuss next steps and the following sign on letter.
“Wikman-Arleta Steering Committee
Care of ROSE Community Development Corporation
October 25, 2013
Dear Multnomah County Commissioners,
It was with considerable disappointment our committee received the decision of the County to not accept our Wikman-Arleta Business Plan and instead have decided to go back out to RFP on the vacant Wikman-Arleta building. As you know, our coalition of community members, agencies and neighborhood associations has worked hard to develop our plan and engaged our community to revision a new purpose for this lovely building in our neighborhood.
We are disappointed that the County has waited so long to provide a determination and during this prolonged waiting period has provided little to no communication about our plan or how it might be improved to satisfy your concerns so that we might be able to move forward with our community based initiative.
Please be aware that various community stakeholders have already invested a great deal of time and resources to this project. The Portland Development Commission, SE Uplift, Rose Community Development, and (–architects?—) have all provided significant in-kind services to the project. Perhaps most significantly, local volunteers have already committed thousands of hours and (–more than $XXX?–) in local donations, from a community with little time or money to waste fruitlessly.
We understand one of the County’s concerns is that the coalition has not developed a funding plan to purchase the building. We ask you to recall that the coalition does not have site control and so we are hampered in our ability to pitch potential funders or banks for loans since we have no official standing with structure. This seems something of a catch 22 situation for us.
We invite the Commissioners to come out to the community and have a conversation with us about the building, what the County hopes to achieve through this decision and how we can work together more fruitfully in the future so that we can be sure that the community members that live, work and play near the Wikman-Arleta building can support the next purpose for this valuable and appreciated resource in our neighborhood.
We believe that this building is a historic and cultural resource to our community and that its future, no matter what form it takes, must serve the community good. Thank you for the opportunity to share our perspective with you so that we can all benefit from understanding how we can best utilize our public resources.
Wikman-Arleta Steering Committee”