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PCC and partners celebrate new Columbia project
Photos and Story by James Hill
It was a cast of hundreds at the grand opening of the new WorkSource Portland Metro North Center at New Columbia Trenton Street project on June 6. The center is a partnership between the Housing Authority of Portland, Oregon Employment Department and PCC.
On hand were hundreds of guests, including Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski and PCC District President Preston Pulliams, got to see the new facilities that feature social services and low-cost housing in multi-colored, state-of-the art buildings. The WorkSource center will provide lifelong learning and access to education and training, employment opportunities.
“It is an honor for me to share in this great celebration of the new center,” Pulliams said. “To open these doors is truly a metaphor for opening opportunities for all residents to jobs and education.”
The New Columbia at Trenton Street is fashioned after the main streets of the past where neighbors and visitors came together to socialize, work and play. The community will feature a lifelong learning center, grocery store, coffee shop, city park with a community garden and fountain, history exhibit, and community hall.
The street will be anchored by senior housing and a community campus with an elementary school, Boys and Girls Club and a renovated University Park Community Center.
“This is what we do best; when we all work together to actually accomplish something that makes lives better for everyone,” said Kulongoski. “New Columbia is about new thinking, about affordable housing, new development and workforce training. We want to get the high schools and community colleges to work together so that students who don’t want a four-year degree but do want a technical skill, or a healthcare career or a trade get the training they need. We want to be the best at bringing workforce development training to places where Oregon live and work and raise families, that’s exactly what we’re doing here at New Columbia.”