Monday, June 06, 2005

DISJECTA: A Perfect New Use For R.J. Templeton Building

After our post the other day, we noticed a sign that Disjecta will be moving into the historic R.J. Templeton building. This is a better "anchor" for the Eastside of the Burnside Bridge than anything the PDC will approve for the Burnside Bridgehead. Disjecta states that it seeks to create "an arts epicenter by launching its new interdisciplinary arts facility in the Templeton Building and creating a beacon on the inner-Eastside for the visual and performing arts".

This is a neighborhood development that we welcome. It is putting an historic building to productive use. It will provide a possible focal point and meeting ground for the many independent artists who live and work in the neighborhood. Disjecta will compliment and enhance some of the best things that are already happening in our neighborhood.

Like other neighbors, we wish that the PDC had cared enough to take the pulse of this neighborhood before fixating on certain uses for its parcel of land at the North side of the East end of the Bridge. (The PDC did make a show of public involvement, and the response did seem to change the plans a little, but it did not change the PDC's fixation on fitting the area to the plan instead of the other way around.) Disjecta's plans give me some hope, but they also show in plain relief how far astray the PDC has gone in its planning.

[For background on the Bridgehead Development, please browse the archives of Portland Communique which has covered the issue extensively and provides links to other sources.]

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