Panel: 'Urban core' needs community support

Panelists who spoke at the Portland Business Alliance forum include (clockwise from top right): Jessica Curtis, Jordan Carter, Judie Durken, Jim Mark, and moderator June Gordon.

Downtown Portland and its surrounding neighborhoods are facing serious problems, but they are not as bad as the national news media makes them sound, and they not insurmountable — although it will take full community response to overcome them.

That was the consensus of a diverse panel of business owners and managers who spoke at a remote Portland Business Alliance forum on Wednesday, April 21. Titled "Re-Activating Portland's Urban Core," it focused on how to overcome the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic that closed offices and increased homelessness, and the months-long series of protests that frequently ended with violence.