Site of Women's Homeless Camp Is Being Sold to Become a Food Cart Pod

Portland Development Corporation is set to finalize a deal on Wednesday to sell the property for $500,000.

This weekend, an advocacy group opened a women's homeless camp on city property in the center of East Portland's Lents neighborhood.

But the camp faces an imminent threat: The property is being sold to become a food-cart pod, then apartments.

The Portland Development Commission, which owns the vacant lot at Southeast Woodstock Boulevard and 93rd Avenue, is planning to finalize a deal worth $500,000 on Wednesday that will sell off the previously vacant lot to a private developer, Lisac Brothers Construction.

The developer's plans include creating a small food cart pod and building a commercial space for a restaurant.

A second phase of the project, which will not begin until the 2035 Comprehensive Plan is adopted, would include a 12-unit market-rate apartment building, according to PDC documents.

"We're proceeding with the transaction," said PDC spokesman Shawn Uhlman, noting the mayor's office is handling any actions related to the camps.

The mayor's office has been looking to a site for an official women's-only camp, said Sara Hottman, a spokeswoman for Mayor Charlie Hales.

But she also noted they informed the camp's organizers that the Southeast Woodstock and 93rd site would not be suitable.

There's no word yet from the mayor's office on what actions, if any, it will take.

The group that set up the camp, called Advocacy 5, decided to take matters into its own hands after delays in finalizing a site with Hales' office.

"We cannot, as an agency of conscience that sees this population almost daily, wait anymore for the City of Portland to take action," the group Advocacy 5 wrote to the Lents Neighborhood association, as The Portland Mercury reported Sunday. "There are women being violated in the most heinous of ways, everyday."

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