In 2011, SERA worked with Portland Parks & Recreation to develop a vision for the first new urban community recreation center ever built by the City of Portland. This new recreation center is planned to contain an indoor aquatic center, gymnasium and fitness rooms, meeting rooms and a community gathering facility on a constrained Portland city block. The project also includes underground parking that is topped by a new city park with play fields. The site is located in the central eastside Buckman neighborhood and is strategically located to serve all inner east Portland neighborhoods. The master plan offers potential for a variety of uses for this site including a water feature, playing fields, community gardens, a grove of trees for meditation, and a playground.
SERA created the original master plan for the site in 2004, assembling multiple stakeholders including Portland Public Schools (the original property owner), Portland Parks & Recreation, the Portland Development Commission, the Central Eastside Industrial Council and multiple neighborhood associations including the Buckman Community Association, Kerns, Hosford-Abernathy, and Sunnyside. In 2009-2010, SERA worked with the same organizations to create a specific building and parks design that may be the basis for a bond levee in 2013. The public outreach process included neighborhood surveys, a project advisory committee made up of representatives of all the stakeholders, a project website, and numerous community open houses with attendance of over 200 neighbors.
SERA and the project team have been striving to create a project that is well integrated into the neighborhood, meets the recreation needs of the wider community, is a model for sustainable development, and is affordable to the City of Portland.