Re: Slavin Village feasibility_210609.pdf

Peter Finley Fry

Land is owned by deed.  Portland (and other public agencies) can and do own land by deed.  A right of way (street) is a super easement across deeded land granted by the original subdivider to provide access to lots.


The easiest way to see this is on Portland Maps that clearly shows the deeded land (which are also tax lots) and the interconnected right of ways.  Portlandmaps will reveal the answer.  It is possible that the right of way extends but is not improved.  It is not uncommon for people to develop unimproved right of ways and extend a yard or garden into the right of way.  I know of a street in Corbett Terwilliger where every property along the street was built into the right of way. 


On deeded land, the owner can prohibit trespass of the land.  On right of way, public access can not be blocked or prohibited – i.e. public right of way can not be privatized by anyone – the city of private party without a public street vacation process.  Ironically, the city in the last few years made it almost impossible to vacate right of ways.  


These areas have a lot of conflict inherent in them.  In my world the laws are the bones and when the bones are broken or ignored then they cause the organism to fail.  I am trying to reduce the breakage so we can discuss the moral principles and not get sidetracked by litigation or illegal action even when innocent.  Keep in mind that there is no final judgement except death.   Litigation only stops when people fade away.  The Boise case provides a road sign, but it is not a definitive conclusion.


My observation, is that no one is really paying attention to reality.  It is no different then attempting to cross a desert without water.


The Salvin idea looks very interesting and conceptually  could work.


I would like to help to make it happen.




Peter Finley Fry    AICP PhD MUP

Land Use Planning

Cultural Anthropologist

303 NW Uptown Terrace; Unit 1B

Portland, Oregon 97210

503 703-8033




Sent from Mail for Windows 10


From: Elise Aymer via
Sent: Wednesday, June 16, 2021 2:52 PM
Subject: Re: [pdxshelterforum] Slavin Village feasibility_210609.pdf


Hi Andy, Peter and Skip,


I very much appreciate Andy's plan and sharing it with the community here on the listserv.


Could you explain what your exchange a bit more. I'm not as versed in planning terms and land use and suspect there are others like me on the listserv.


Right now Slavin Street is a dead end. Is the land at the end of the dead end owned by the City? 


Or is the idea that it's being held by the City because although the road stops where the proposed village site would be it still counts as a right of way that in theory could be extended?


Is it that the land at the end of the dead end cannot be legally designated for another use as any other use than extending the road would be trumped by the rights of the property holders along the road?


I understood, I think, the part about how camps in right of way designated areas are seen to block right of passage and so to be an attempt to privatize public use.


Last question, does this mean that it would be necessary (with legalities in mind) to find a piece of City owned land for which they hold the title vs. a parcel such as on Slavin St. where they seem to hold usage in which to site villages?


Thanks a bunch, in advance for the clarification.






Join to automatically receive all group messages.