Southwest Hills Residential League

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New film, Citizen Jane: Battle for the City Opens Friday, May 5 at Cinema 21  

A primer on neighborhood activism & community building…

Film runs May 5-11 at Cinema 21 in Portland. See show times.


Watch the trailer for Citizen Jane, the new documentary inspired by the life, legacy, and brilliance of writer, activist and urban theorist Jane Jacobs, author of The Death and Life of Great American Cities. She fought to save historic New York City during the ruthless redevelopment era of urban planner Robert Moses in the 1960s.


What makes vibrant neighborhoods and cities? Jane Jacobs states her case in her 1961 treatise The Death and Life of Great American Cities. This new film focuses on Jacobs’ life - what it means to be part of a city and community and how to organize together for the betterment of your neighborhood.  Jacobs was a pioneer and important thinker in understanding what makes a great neighborhood and city.

Next SWHRL Meeting:

You’re Invited! SWHRL Annual Membership Meeting – Wednesday, 17 May 2017

6:30 – 8:30pm – Ainsworth School Gymnasium – 2425 SW Vista Ave.

The agenda will include:

·       SWHRL Board Elections

·       Vote on Bylaws Revision

·       SWHRL Year in Review

·       Action Items for 2017-18

·       Land Use: Proposed development for SW Broadway, SW Hewett, St Thomas More

·       Transportation Issues – trails, traffic

·       New SWHRL Public Safety Committee – crime concerns, Neighborhood Watch

·       Strohecker’s Update

·       Vista-Spring Restoration Project Update

·       Vista Bridge Views / View Corridors threatened by development

Transportation / SWIM Project:

Rob Wilcox (SWHRL SWIM Project Lead) & Nancy Seton met with Matt Grumm (Sr Policy Director to Commissioner Dan Saltzman) & Denver Igarta, PBOT Project Manager for SWIM Project


SWHRL representatives met with Goose Hollow Planning Committee Feb. 7 & Goose Hollow Board Feb. 16 re. collaboration on reconnecting Vista-Mill St Terrace-Market steps + cooperation on other public steps/trails we share. Both Neighborhoods will send PBOT a letter requesting help on Vista-Mill steps.

SWHRL Bylaws Revision needs your attention:

We are in the process of updating the 2008 SWHRL Bylaws to bring them into synch with the city's 2015 template for neighborhood Bylaws. The new proposed Bylaws are streamlined in contrast to our existing 2008 Bylaws. Going forward some procedural detail will be moved to a separate document - SWHRL Policies & Procedures.The new SWHRL amended Bylaws will need to be approved by a majority of SWHRL members at two subsequent membership meetings, e.g. the May 17, 2017 and October 18, 2017 general meetings. Since it's not practical to read the complete Bylaws at the meetings, we ask that members review the draft Bylaws prior to the meetings where it will be considered. Note: Some of the changes appear in bold for easy recognition. In places alternative wordings are given for your consideration, in particular the SWHRL Purpose. The existing 2008 SWHRL Bylaws and the new Office of Neighborhood Involvement (ONI) template are available on Portland's website. Please send comments/suggestions to And most importantly, we need you there May 17 for a quorum so we can vote for both the new Bylaws and a new SWHRL Board!

Urgent Need for SWHRL Board Members, Officers, Other Volunteers:

SWHRL can only carry out its mission to look out for the interests of our community if we have help from all corners of the neighborhood. It’s time to let new volunteers to take their turns. In May 2017, Nancy Seton intends to retire as SWHRL President after a 3-year term. She’s also served as Land Use Chair for about 10 years, as Board member for nearly that long, SWHRL representative to the SWNI Board, and in the absence of other volunteers, is currently responsible for Communications (SWHRL website & newsletter, monthly SWHRL news for the SWNI newsletter, membership list maintenance). Some of these duties should be shared! We will also need a new Treasurer and Secretary in May 2017. Are you retired, and willing to take on some rewarding activities? Or not retired, but care greatly about the quality of life in your neighborhood?

Please step up now and volunteer for: 

  • The SWHRL Board (at large members representing different areas of the neighborhood)
  • Transportation Committee (especially those with an interest in bike, pedestrian and transit issues):
    • Tracks transportation issues relevant to SWHRL & formulates SWHRL positions & responses;
    • Meets with representatives of other neighborhoods on issues of mutual interest
  • Land Use Committee:
    • Responds to the City’ Land Use notices of proposed development in the neighborhood;
    • Tracks land use issues relevant to SWHRL and formulates SWHRL positions & responses;
    • Crafts SWHRL Neighborhood Plan
    • Meets with representatives of other neighborhoods on issues of mutual interest.
  • Schools Committee
  • Outreach Communications:
    • Website, newsletter and membership list maintenance
  • Strohecker's Committee
  • SWHRL History:
    • Help with documentation and archiving of SWHRL history – oral and written
  • Reps to SWNI Committees, e.g. Land Use, Transportation, Public Safety, Parks, Communications, etc.)

Interested in getting together with neighbors to discuss issues, such as the future of Strohecker's? Schools? Trails? Emergency Preparedness? Let us know your email address so we can contact you.  

Please attend our general membership meetings to let us know your views and concerns, and even sit in on our monthly SWHRL Board meetings – they are open to the public.

Sign up for our E-Viewpoints newsletter via our email below or our website: on the main SWHRL web page click on the words “Join Our List.”

Contact us by email at

Volunteers Welcome: SWHRL "Invasives to Natives" Restoration Project to Beautify Corner at SW Vista Ave. at SW Spring Street

We’ve been made great progress during the winter and spring, removing invasive, non-native species from the City’s right of way at the corner of SW Vista and Spring Street. With the help of dedicated volunteers, we've weeded, added a seating area with boulders, and paths (courtesy of Boy Scouts).  This wet season (Fall-Winter 2016-17) we’ll continue replanting with native and hardy plants. We're exploring ideas to add a little public art - a book kiosk/little free lending library and ceramic art from Ainsworth students. Any ideas?

To join future work parties, contact SWHRL: or Nancy Seton at 503-224-3840 to get on the email notification list. All ages - students, parents, Boy/Girl Scouts, and any others welcome. This will be a beautiful spot we can be proud of!

Comprehensive Plan Update Events

(Chaise Johnson, Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability)

Want to track progress on the 2035 Comprehensive Plan Goals, Policies and Land Use Map?
Check the project calendar.

More about the different parts of the TSP update work can be found on the TSP website.

What’s in Stage 2 is also covered here.

Local Publication - Portland Heights Living:

Have you seen Eleni Kehagiaras' neighborhood social magazine, Portland Heights Living? The magazine will be written entirely by Portland Heights residents about their kids, pets, homes, businesses, events, recipes, and more. For more info, to get involved, or to send in your news, email Eleni, Portland Heights Living Publisher, at


Join Southwest Hills for neighborhood news:

Join the discussion on what's happening at the Strohecker's site. See announcments for upcoming SWHRL meetings. Find recommendations for contractors, babysitters, piano teachers. Read about the latest coyote sightings. Look for the Southwest Hills Moms Group and women's biking group on social networking site NextDoor. NextDoor is a great way to find out what is happening in our area and connect with neighbors. The more of us who use it, the better tool it becomes.