Tag: NE Glisan

2040 Portland Freight Plan

Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) staff are in the midst of updating the City’s Freight Master Plan adopted by the Portland City Council in 2006. The 2040 Portland Freight Plan seeks to create a strategic road map for investing in urban freight infrastructure in Portland. This update allows the city to rebalance the commercial demands on the roads with the City’s Vision Zero and environmental goals. PBOT created a survey for Portlanders to help identify intersections, streets, curbs, bridges, ramps, and neighborhoods where people experience urban freight-related safety and mobility concerns.

Montavilla is a neighborhood surrounded and bisected by urban freight movement. The I84 and I205 freeways create its north and east borders, while 82nd Avenue, NE Glisan Street, SE Start/Washington Streets, and SE Division Street all carry substantial commercial traffic through the community. Businesses and residents in the neighborhood can provide unique perspectives to the survey, helping PBOT meet its goal of creating a safe, equitable, efficient, and sustainable urban freight system.

Participating in the PBOT survey is the public’s best opportunity to shape the next 20 years of freight activity in Portland. The results from the PBOT survey, along with extensive reports and analyses, will form the final Plan. Other guidance will come from the 2040Freight Community Advisory Committee (CAC) and Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) and multiple supporting documents developed throughout the planning process.


Title image courtesy of PBOT

USPS Collection Boxes Removed

Update – United States Postal Service (USPS) staff will return two recently removed mail collection boxes within the next week. USPS Strategic Communications Specialist, Ernie Swanson, explained that each collection box suffered extensive damage last month. A lack of suitable replacement boxes delayed the reinstallation of each unit. However, postal staff expects to return those locations to service by next week.

Swanson said the unit at 1208 SE 76TH Ave was again vandalized by persons attempting to steal mail from the blue collection box. USPS investigators could not identify the cause of damage to the collection box at 7937 SE Stark Street. Swanson commented that a vehicle likely struck the Stark Street box, but the Postal Service has no details on that incident.

The boxes are still missing from the USPS Locations map but should return when replacement boxes become available again. Keep an eye on the USPS website to see when they return to service. Until then, postal customers can use the two other Montavilla collection boxes at 7100 NE Glisan Street and 9100 SE Stark Street.

Update – January 10th, 2022. USPS crews replaced the boxes at 1208 SE 76TH Ave and 7937 SE Stark Street late last week. The returned units are not yet visible on the USPS Locations map.


Original article published December 31, 2021

As 2021 comes to a close, crews from the United States Postal Service (USPS) removed two of Montavilla’s mail collection boxes. Six months ago, postal staff similarly eliminated a mail-drop site on SE 92nd Avenue. Now only two blue mailboxes serve the neighborhood.

This summer, the number of USPS blue collection boxes in Montavilla dropped from five to four. In July of this year, postal employees removed the collection box at 1231 SE 92nd Ave, leaving a sizable gap in the neighborhood for outbound mail-drop locations. That removal was not the first disappearance of this collection box in 2021. In January, thieves broke into this box to steal mail and rendered it unusable. Crews replaced it a week later.

Removed Collection Box SE 76th and Salmon Dec 31st, 2021.

A few days before the end of the year, USPS staff removed the blue postal collection boxes from 1208 SE 76TH Ave and 7937 SE Stark Street. The unit on SE 76th Avenue in front of the St. Andrews Memory Care facility previously suffered damage due to vandals, being replaced twice in 2020.

USPS blue collection box on the northwest corner of SE 80th and Stark

Unlike the other two sites, the unit on the northwest corner of SE 80th and Stark Street did not suffer from abuse. Removal of that collection box surprised one reader who relied on that location to send outgoing mail and wrote to Montavilla News looking for information. A mail-drop in that general location has served Montavilla’s postal needs for over a century. In 1901, postal workers installed the first locked mailbox to collect outgoing mail on the northeast corner of Base Line Road (now SE Stark) and Hibbard Street (now SE 80th Ave). Since 1891, Montavilla town has had a Post Office, contract post office, or collection box within a few blocks of this corner. Now that this mailbox is gone, people will need to adjust their habits and find a new location.

Removed Collection Box SE 80th and Stark Dec 31st, 2021.

USPS’s collection box directory no longer lists the removed units and only displays two locations in Montavilla, indicating these are long-term changes. The reaming boxes at 7100 NE Glisan Street and 9100 SE Stark Street are further out from the center of Montavilla Town but easily accessible on major roads. Make a note of your new closest mail-drop and plan for a slightly longer journey to send out your letters.

USPS Blue Mailbox Map December 31st, 2021

Futura Coffee Roasters Opening on NE Glisan

Next month, Futura Coffee Roasters will open at 7201 NE Glisan Street in the former Fillmore space. The creators of this new coffee producer and cafe believe sustainability is the future for the industry and have woven that value into every aspect of their business.

Futura Coffee Roasters is the vision of CJ Speelman and a group of coffee professionals who share a common perspective. For ten years, Speelman honed his skills in the industry, first working at the counter as a Barista and eventually creating the roasting company Tanager Coffee Roasters. Speelman owns The Arbor Lodge coffee shop in North Portland, making this NE Glisan location his second store. His partners in this new venture bring many years of retail coffee experience and respect for the art and delicate science of good coffee.

The group behind the cafe feels that flavor and brewing are only part of a perfect cup of coffee. Speelman explains that a simple morning ritual like drinking coffee can impact the environment. “As a company, Futura Coffee Roasters see regenerative agriculture, the rehabilitation of soil and increasing of biodiversity among many things, as one of the key forces in combating climate change.” The company is committed to building relationships with farmers and sourcing coffee as ethically and sustainably as possible. Additionally, food items on the menu include a mix of locally sourced pastries and bagels.

Since August, crews have reworked the corner coffee shop into a new space. The team took the same approach to the renovation as they have with their menu, making for a slightly prolonged process. “We took a lot of time making sure that we used as much sustainable materials as possible, from handmade tiles and eco-friendly wall plaster to fixtures and furniture. Because of these commitments to sustainability alongside the supply chain issues, it has taken a bit longer than we had hoped,” said Speelman.

Although the cafe will no longer resemble Fillmore, Speelman recognizes its role in the community and wants to welcome back those regular customers. “I have been a big fan of Fillmore and the special connection they had with the neighborhood. We hope to capture that same spirit and add our own unique vibe. I am extremely excited to share the space with the neighborhood. It is looking incredible and will look and feel like a whole new space.”

Expect Futura Coffee Roasters to launch midway through January, opening daily from 7 AM to 5 PM. Follow the cafe’s Instagram for updates and to learn more about the treats that will soon become available on NE Glisan.

Barrett Hair Design Closes on Glisan

Barrett Hair Design recently closed its location at 6826 NE Glisan Street. Having opened in October 2018, the multi-station salon offered full-service hair styling, cuts, and coloring to residents for several years. The shop shut down after the owner could not secure continued occupancy from the landlord.

Clay Barrett Ahle moved to Portland from California in 1998, working as a Hairstylist at several salons before opening Barrett Hair Design. For Ahle, this most recent experience, and changes in Portland, have dissuaded him from attempting to reopen at a new location in the City. “I will not open another shop in Portland. In fact, I am looking at relocating elsewhere in the United States,” explained Ahle over a text message. He indicated that the local culture and economics have moved in an intolerable direction for his comfort. “This is not my Portland, so I will be leaving. It’s become the California I was trying to escape.”

The storefront is currently vacant, and broom swept. The property is not yet listed for lease but may soon become available. Keep an eye on 6826 NE Glisan Street for new activity from a future tenant.

Xmas Tree Lots Return to Montavilla

It is the season to bring the outdoors inside with a Christmas tree or holiday wreath. The neighborhood is fortunate to have two reoccurring tree lots, allowing Montavilla residents local access to the winter decorations. This year, Red Shed Christmas Trees joins Montavillage’s location in the Vinje & Son‘s parking lot near SE 78th Ave and Washington Street.

In 2008, Lesle Janssen began selling trees in Montavilla Town. Janssen’s Montavillage tree stand started at 76th and SE Stark next to Beets Auto Body. The lot moved to 78th and Washington in 2015. This year, Montavillage merged with longtime Christmas Trees retailer Red Shed. Janssen continues Red Shed’s 20-year tradition of providing fresh local products in a warm, community-building atmosphere. They are open seven days a week, 10 AM – 8 PM. On Friday and Saturday, sales staff are available for an additional hour. Paying in cash is recommended for faster service, and delivery options are available.

Montavillage near SE 78th Ave and Washington Street

There is another reoccurring Christmas tree lot at the corner of NE 92nd Ave and Glisan Street for those closer to NE Glisan. This vacant lot hosts tree sales nearly every year. They advertise Douglas fir, Grand fir, and Noble fir trees.

Expect to pay a little more for a tree this season. A challenging growing season may have an impact on tree prices. If a cut tree is in your holiday plans, you do not have to travel far to find one. Check out these local lots and see if you can find the right tree for your home.

Tree lot at the corner of NE 92nd Ave and Glisan Street

Public Support Needed for NE Glisan Businesses

Several NE Glisan businesses seek community support to keep their doors open in a challenging economy. Mudd Works Roastery at 6922 NE Glisan Street started a GoFundMe campaign last month to bridge the gap caused by revenue shortfalls. After health issues and nearly two years of limited operations during the pandemic, the coffee house needs an infusion of money to make it another season. Hinterland at 7112 NE Glisan Street is also looking to make up for slower sales. Instead of fundraising, they created the Forever Feral 2022 Calendar to bolster income.

Mudd Works Roastery’s GoFundMe efforts began at the start of November. Winter is a notoriously slow season for the coffee company, and without the cash reserves from the previous months, continuing operations will be challenging. 

I am not one to ask for help too often but my life recently changed as I contracted COVID-19 for the second time. Luckily, I have some very great friends who have stepped up to keep things going while I focus on getting better. Mudd Works has been getting by for the last year and a half. But with the colder months and the ever-present COVID-19, we are suffering financially. This is the time of year where we typically see a drop in sales. But with people going out less and spending less due to the pandemic, sales are down. With sales going down in the past year and our expenses rising, it’s been a struggle. Despite it all, we’ve managed to stay open half days at one of our locations to provide fuel for our loyal patrons. Our issue in the simplest of terms is a lack of capital and customers. we thought a GoFundMe appeal seemed like the best option to raise money, share our story, and connect with those who care about small businesses. I know I’m not alone in this story of struggle. I’m sure I will be one of the many voices this season experiencing a similar situation. It’s not lost on me that so many in my industry and folks at home are only just getting by financially. Making this a lot harder to ask for help. I ask this, give until it feels good. That giving may look like a donation or it may be a reposting to your social media pages or even kind words of support. Any and all forms of giving have an impact. Donations will be used for rent and utilities, labor costs and inventory for coffee roasting and the bakery/cafe.

Mudd Works Roastery’s GoFundMe campaign page

The Hinterland Forever Feral 2022 Calendar celebrities the spirit of the store’s brand in pictures. The content of the calendar may not suit everyone’s style. However, they have many other products that can express the same powerful messages the company is known for. Of course, there is always coffee for sale at Hinterland, and every purchase helps.

The first (annual?) Hinterland calendar is here and it’s wild. This print run is super limited (it’s almost 2022 after all!). Grab one for yourself, share with your friends via social media: it all helps! I have to be honest with you all: while we’re having fun and making the best of things these days…shit is wildly tenuous with us and other small businesses. This holiday season will be a make-or-break for many small businesses and I hope you think of us when you’re sourcing coffee or cozies (or in this case saucy calendars). If you value what Hinterland brings to your lives–and what we bring the towns our brick and mortars reside in–please continue to support us. This calendar is probably not ideal for youngsters–but you decide. All photographs were taken by Kait Di Angeles in Portland, OR.

Hinterland December 1st email newsletter

Other restaurants on the street have also started less public GoFundMe campaigns, looking for customer assistance while circumstances force limited operation. The neighborhood businesses seeking support all recognize that they are not alone. Almost any small business in Montavilla needs more customers this season. However, these businesses are looking for extra consideration from the community and would be grateful for the added income to survive a difficult time.

New Glisan Sidewalk Removes On-Site Parking

Update The sidewalk reconstruction is now complete, with cars parked along the new curb. The work fulfills a Portland mandated change, explains Alex Ianos, the property owner. “The city wanted me to close the driveway due to the safety of people backing up into Glisan.” 

City staff did not require the parking lot’s removal during last year’s renovations. However, recent tenant improvements for the upcoming Isamini Bar allowed Portland to apply new parking design standards at the site. “A bar is opening in the small space close to the pool hall, and that permit triggered the sidewalk work,” said Ianos.

Completed sidewalk

Original article published November 19th, 2021

This week, crews reconstructed a section of sidewalk at 7909 NE Glisan Street. The building’s new owner redeveloped the property in 2020, replacing much of the sidewalk on the corner and creating extended curbs for shorter street crossings. The new mid-block pedestrian space removes a curb cut for onsite parking and adds two additional street tree cutouts, reconnecting the block’s tree line.

This redesigned sidewalk will abandon the current four-car parking lot in front of the single-story portion of the building. However, at least three more curbside parking spaces are now available for public parking on the block. The former parking slab may become outdoor seating for a future tenant or become a shared outdoor space for the building.

The nose-in parking used at this site can be hazardous for drivers and pedestrians. It creates a long section of sidewalk where cars could cross with reduced visibility. Additionally, cars have to back out into heavy traffic on NE Glisan when leaving. This sidewalk reconstruction will bring more trees to NE Glisan and should deliver enhanced safety. Look for a better walking experience at this location soon.

Concrete forms establishing three street tree cut outs

Glisan’s New Approach to Outdoor Seating

This month, Blank Slate Bar created unique outdoor seating on NE Glisan. Unlike other covered dining spaces constructed in curbside parking spaces, this open-walled shelter spans the entire width of the sidewalk, covering the whole pedestrian space. Its design is in response to concerns around customer seating adjacent to heavy traffic.

Over the last 18 months, bars and restaurants have relied on outdoor seating to serve customers safely during the pandemic. The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) expanded those spaces through special free permits, accommodating a variety of seating configurations for the service industry. Most businesses in Montavilla chose to create Parking Plazas to serve guests. That style of outdoor seating converts space previously used for curbside parking into expanded sidewalk seating while maintaining adequate space for pedestrians. As the need for outdoor seating persisted, more substantial wood structures replaced temporary configurations. Most gained covered roofs and sidewalls.

This image and cover image by Weston Ruter

Regardless of the structure’s build quality, Parking Plazas have customers seated next to moving traffic with only a thin wood divider protecting people from passing vehicles. On slower streets, that is less of an issue. However, seating placed on SE Stark Street can feel dangerously close to fast-moving trucks and cars.

Compared to Stark Street, NE Glisan traffic is more hazardous. That reality caused Kierre Van De Veere, the Blank Slate Bark’s owner, to consider design alternatives for their outdoor seating. “We chose not to do parking space seating due to the busy nature of Glisan. So we worked with PBOT and our design team to come up with this option.” In this configuration, customers on Glisan have a parking lane buffer between vehicles and the tables.

Blank Slate Bar’s covered seating area features a transparent corrugated shed roof that extends from the front of the building to the curb and runs the entire width of the bar’s shopfront. The arrangement allows for two-person seating against the windows and larger group seating close to the curb. Pedestrians can walk through the center area in an arcade-style passageway between the tables. 

In addition to its unique placement, crews constructed the shelter out of large timbers. The result is a structure that seems permanent and intentional. People seem to appreciate the design used at Blank Slate Bar, according to Van De Veere. “We have gotten an overwhelmingly positive response from our customers and neighbors, who are always supporting us in any way they can.”

Regardless of the design, Van De Veere appreciates the impact of open-air seating on places like hers. “These outdoor spaces are a lifeline to small businesses.” The new seating is available just in time for winter and built to last for many years to come. Blank Slate Bar is located at 7201 NE Glisan Street Suite C and is open Tuesday through Saturday.

Halal Meat & Grocery Closes on Glisan

Afgoye Halal Meat & Grocery recently moved out of its storefront at 7202 NE Glisan Street after seven years in business. The grocery store suffered several setbacks during the pandemic, prompting the owner not to renew the lease. This store was one of only a few reaming retailers serving the Islamic community in the area.

Owner Abdullah Shareef started the business in June of 2014 under the namer Bakaal Halal Meat & Grocery Store. However, by November 2014, the store changed its name to Afgoye Halal Meat & Grocery Store. Afgoye is a town and region in southwestern Somalia. The store offered foods and ingredients from Asia, India, and Africa. The shop also specialized in fresh-cut Halal meat. Halal is Arabic for permissible. Halal meat is butchered in accordance with Islamic law, as defined in the Koran.

Jamal Dar, Executive Director of the nearby African Youth & Community Organization, provided some insight into the business closure. “They were struggling due to the pandemic and lack of economic stability. That being said, they have closed the business and are looking for another opportunity for future business.”

1924 Sanborn Map

This two-story wood-framed building contains two storefronts and six apartments. Supposedly built in 1890, this unassuming building has a long history of accommodating renters. The actual date of construction is uncertain as the 1909 Sanborn map does not show any structures on the property. V. Cladek, a notable Montavilla figure, owned the rooming house in the early 1900s according to a 1918 plumbing permit when it had an address of 1840 E Glisan Street. Portland renumbered its streets in the 1930s to create a consistent address structure throughout the city. The 1924 Sanborn map shows the building in its current footprint with a label of “Housekeep’g R’ms” at the 1840 E Glisan address, suggesting that a later remodel added the storefronts to the ground floor.

Although Afgoye Halal Meat & Grocery’s time at the building was cut short, they added to the property’s extensive history and provided specialty foods for the community. The property owners have not yet listed the vacant retail space as available to lease. Expect to see a new shop in that location sometime in the future.

Fillmore Coffee Shop Moves Online Only

After six years serving the community from their cafe on NE Glisan Street, the owners of Fillmore coffee shop decided to close the physical store and embrace online coffee delivery. The pandemic closures and customer tensions stressed this early pioneer of Glisan street, forcing the family business to adapt. What had begun as a temporary financial bridge during the COVID-19 lockdown turned into the permeant path forward for the coffee company.

In June of 2015, when the Fillmore coffee shop opened at 7201 NE Glisan Street, there were few options like it on the street. The shop’s co-owner Tim Willcox perceived the lack of food services in the area as an opportunity to take his passion for coffee to the public and perhaps start a trend. “[I] saw a need for a community space on this stretch of Glisan. This was back when there was pretty much nothing happening aside from East Glisan Pizza. It was sort of a dead zone, and I think Fillmore helped to fuel some cool businesses developing in the area,” explained Willcox. Within a few years, bars, bakeries, and other dining options filled in around their shop.

Tim Willcox and his wife started the shop with a loan from his mother. For years, they struggled to build a stable business but saw success as others joined them on Glisan. Then COVID-19 brought that all to a halt. “We decided to cease our cafe operations due to the pandemic. Our sales had dropped nearly 80 percent in just a matter of days, and the lockdown on March 15th cemented our destiny. We had to let all of our staff go,” remembered Willcox. “Our only path to keeping the business alive was to start delivering bags of freshly roasted coffee to our customer’s doors.”

The roasted coffee delivery program kept them afloat until the cafe reopened in mid-May 2020. They served to-go orders through a plexiglass window with inside seating closed to the public. The business was nothing like before, and working in this reduced capacity stressed the staff. “Nobody was allowed inside the shop, and Monika was working her other full-time job while making all the food orders. Our daughter was doing remote learning on a laptop at the shop. It was a grind, to say the least. We managed to do this for a year until spring 2021,” explained Willcox.

After trying to make it work, it became apparent to Willcox that the new business model was not sustainable and no longer rewarding. “Things had just become too complicated and stressful with the pandemic, and while most of our customers were great and thankful about our safety protocols, we had to deal with quite a few people who were genuinely angry that they couldn’t come inside to order and hang out. We were screamed at and insulted by disgruntled customers.”

For the family business, it was time to move on from the cafe. However, Willcox did not want to give up on the delivery service. It is a way to keep roasting great coffee and remain connected to loyal customers. As an online-only business, Fillmore is still evolving, according to Willcox. “It’s still a work in progress. We’re building out a small Roastery and coffee lab. Things have been slower, yet still steady.” As the team builds onto the delivery business, they hope to gain a few wholesale customers and develop a nationwide mail-out service.

For Willcox, the transition to online coffee sales was the right choice for his family. “Right now, I’m happy with what we’re doing, and it gives me time to take my kid to and from school every day. It’s definitely less stressful.” If you miss your morning cup of Fillmore Coffee or want to try out one of their roasts, schedule a delivery online at orderfillmorecoffee.com