Portland Is Selling a Vacant Lot That Could Have Gone to Homeless Camp

City Commissioner Nick Fish vetoed a possible sale of the property to Right 2 Dream Too.

A surplus piece of property that Portland City Commissioner Nick Fish vetoed this spring as a possible new location for homeless camp Right 2 Dream Too will soon be going where Fish wants it: on the open market.

The parcel, at 2439 NW 22nd Ave., will go on sale Wednesday, if the City Council approves an ordinance to accept offers.

The property is a pipe and equipment storage yard for the Bureau of Environmental Services. It was one of 21 sites picked in February by real-estate broker Cushman & Wakefield as places to move the Old Town homeless camp—and one of four identified by City Hall as real possibilities.

But both Fish and Right 2 Dream Too leaders rejected the property as an option. Camp leaders said the location, deep in Industrial Northwest, was too far from social services.

Before they said no, however, Fish told City Commissioner Amanda Fritz to take the BES lot off the list. He explained to WW in April that he was committed to getting the best possible price for the land after previous embarrassments.

"My responsibility is to make sure that we learn from past mistakes, and that when we dispose of surplus properties, we do it by the book," Fish said then.

The property has a market value of $788,750.

Meanwhile, the search for a new site for Right 2 Dream Too, which preoccupied City Hall for much of the spring, is in limbo.

The Oregonian reported in June that a new city deal could leave the camp in its current location, next to the Chinatown gate, until 2017.

Willamette Week’s reporting has concrete impacts that change laws, force action from civic leaders, and drive compromised politicians from public office. Support WW’s journalism through our Give!Guide Fundraising page.