Trader Joe's Learnings and Perspectives


Tonight  the Boise neighborhood started an open dialogue about the Trader Joes deal and weren't able to finish. This blog post serves as a forum for Boise Community Members to continue the conversation before the next General Meeting on March 10th.

The questions we posed to our members initially and during our meeting were as follows:

  • What do you think about the recent developments regarding Trader Joes?
  • What questions do you have about this project?
  • How has all the news made you feel?
  • Is there an underlying issue that Boise should take a stance on?

You may have specific opinions about The PDC, PAALF, Majestic, the subsidy, or you might have higher level comments about gentrification and affordable housing and that's O.K. to lay out here as long as we are being respectful to one another.

It seems that regardless of individual's specific opinions or things we think we may know, it has started a dialogue and that's a good thing for the health of our community.

Please use your names when you comment and if you commented during the meeting, maybe go ahead and sum up your comments here for others to see. I really enjoyed listening to all of you. Thank you for your time and involvement with BNA.


Caroline Dao (Board Chair)
Stephen Gomez (LUTC Chair)


Opportunity to give feedback and ask questions to our North Precinct

Introducing Safety and Livability Conversations with North Precinct Command series at NECN and Police Bureau survey:
On Monday, February 24th at 6:30 p.m., North Precinct Commander Mike Leloff will join the Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods' Safety and Livability Team (SALT) to kick off a series of public safety-focused meetings that SALT will host throughout the year. The first meeting is a chance for neighbors to share the topics they want to discuss with Command staff in upcoming meetings, such as crime prevention, traffic, and neighborhood response. Everyone is welcome!

When: Monday February 24th, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Where: Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods, 4815 NE 7th Avenue, Portland, 97211
Questions? Contact Claire Adamsick, or 503.388.9030.

In prep for the meeting, what services are most important to you when it comes to the Portland Police?
The Portland Police Bureau is seeking input from the community regarding policing services through a brief survey posted at The survey is available until March 1.

Interested in Urban Forestry? Join the Boise Neighborhood Tree Inventory!

tree inventory.jpg

Interested in urban forestry? Boise Neighborhood was selected by the Parks department for a tree inventory. Conducting an inventory and creating a neighborhood tree plan are ambitious projects that require the help and commitment of a group to be successful. If you live in an inventory neighborhood, join the inventory effort! Tree teams are seeking help planning work days, securing inventory locations, and recruiting volunteers. 

Organizer Planning Workshop
Saturday, March 8
9 am to noon
SE Uplift at 3534 SE Main St.
Register at


Visit the Parks page for more info.

BNA's New SALT Chair: Katy Wolf

Hi, I’m Katy. I’ve lived in North and Northeast Portland for the past six years. I moved to the Boise Neighborhood near Mississippi Avenue two years ago, around the time when I was starting to get curious about what I could do to make a concrete, positive impact in sustainability in my city and neighborhood. So I recently started a neighborhood sustainability group called Sustainable Mississippi. I intend for its values to include respecting diversity and history, and being non-judgmental and inclusive.


Everyone knows that many people come to Portland because of its image and reputation in sustainability. But it’s not easy being green in a first world country that values convenience, status symbols, and material wealth. I have slowly taken a lot of positive green steps in my personal life, and I’m fortunate and grateful to work at a Gold Sustainability at Work certified office. For me, it’s a big incentive to work there. I also make shopping decisions based on sustainable values, which marketers and retailers all know well about -- greenwashing is all the rage these days. Greenwashing is labeling something as sustainable when it really isn’t. It alleviates a psychological feeling of guilt with no commitment or change in behavior. Seeing through greenwashing and becoming aware of sustainable options is sort of like putting on the eyeglasses in They Live, and suddenly seeing a horrifying reality that we are complicit in.


Now, that part of my brain won’t turn off. I see things that bother me more often. When I saw overflowing trash cans on Mississippi, it was a great motivator for me to ask myself what I could do about it.  According to this recent Slate article, my subconscious guilt manifested as disgust. So my response was a tingling sensation of responsibility from the “community-minded” part of my brain. I found out that other business districts such as Alberta and St. Johns have replaced or introduced new trash cans and recycling bins, whose artistic elements reflect their community’s identity and feeling. My neighborhood of  Mississippi Ave. seems ready for a similar kind of update. Through that seed of a project, I have formed Sustainable Mississippi and joined the Boise Neighborhood Association’s Board as a the Safety and Livability Chair, so that I can do much more than just address the trash can problem.


I hope this group will bring together neighborhood residents to learn from each other and provide opportunities for creative, collaborative problem solving and open dialogue. I’d like to model this group after Sustainable Overlook, which has done some really cool projects in its first four years:

  • Film events with home cooked food, drinks and discussion.
  • Summer yard sale: Saturday is sale day, Sunday is free-for-all day
  • Earth Day cleanup with Master Recyclers, and tomatoes-for-trash exchange
  • Intersection repair with street paint, planter boxes with native plants
  • Residential seismic retrofitting free assessments and DIY workshop
  • Pesticide-free garden tours
  • DIY food classes

Beyond residents, my goal and hope is that Sustainable Mississippi will also reach businesses, schools, churches, and neighborhood-run events. Immediate goals are:

  • Increasing recycling and composting options for events

  • Increasing awareness of green purchasing choices for businesses

  • Helping businesses become Sustainability at Work certified

  • Quantifying existing and potential improvements in green choices at a neighborhood or street level


If this sounds like the kind of stuff you’d like to be a part of, or if you have ideas, questions or concerns, please reach out! Over the winter, we can research and plan how to achieve these goals by next spring and summer, and roll them out through events and outreach. These projects are going to be impactful, exciting and fun. The Boise Neighborhood Association recently put their support behind this initiative, and the Mississippi Business Association has been very receptive and encouraging. To learn more, please visit Sustainable Mississippi’s website and Facebook page. Our first meetup event is January 25 at 4 pm at Bar Bar, where we’ll talk about our interests and ideas for sustainability projects this year.


Get Involved in the New Year!

Dear Neighbors,

Just a reminder that there are no meetings in December although some of us are continuing work on specific issues. We look forward to the New Year and encourage you to make a resolution to be a part of the ever evolving community conversation by joining the BNA! As development remains steadfast, liquor licenses applications not slowing, and livability changing we need others to help keep the association going strong. If you think you might be interested, please fill out this form so that one of us can get in touch with you.

(If time commitment is a concern we can help you determine what level of involvement is right for you).




How do you pronounce Boise?

If you talk to old timers in the neighborhood who lived here prior to the Vanport flood you notice a difference in the pronunciation of the neighborhood.  Many current residents pronounce it “Boy’zee”, or “Boy’see”, presumably after the city in Idaho, but many of the old timers seem to pronounce it “Boyz’” or “Boice.”  You catch it most often when the old timers are fondly referring to their early years at Boise school (Boise-Eliot).

This difference has always bothered me, so I went about researching the neighborhood’s namesake, Reuben Patrick Boise (1818-1907).  Boise was from Massachusetts and of Irish descent, and the spelling of his name actually changed between his father’s generation and his – presumably due to common mispronunciation (oh, the irony).  The Boise name was previously spelled Boies, and tracing it back further reveals the earliest record of the name: DuBois from Bois-Le-Duc, Netherlands.  The proper pronunciation during Rueben P Boise’s lifetime was “Boice” or “Bois.” 

Personally, I prefer the one-syllable pronunciation in deference to our neighborhood’s history and namesake, but change is not always a bad thing. 

More information can be found here:

Reuben P. Boise Family PapersMark O. Hatfield Library, Willamette University., Oral History Project

Talk to your elderly neighbors!

By Noah Lauerman
Board At Large