Toward an age-friendly Intertwine

Reviewing our region's progress on aging, greenspaces and sustainability

Research over the past decade has made a few things crystal clear: First, the natural areas and greenspaces of our region are one of the very best things going for aging adults. Two, more than 20,000 barriers to accessibility have been identified in Portland parks and greenspaces alone. Local expert Alan DeLaTorre briefs us on some very cool efforts to make The Intertwine an age-friendlier place.

Sinking equipment & buzzing bees

Overcoming challenges on Government Island

A crew of seven recently blazed a cross-Government Island route, repaired equipment, and seeded 630 pounds of wildflower and grasses -- all in an effort to enhance habitat for pollinators and grassland birds. Lisa Appel of the Port of Portland describes the challenges, methodology and potential rewards of the Government Island Grassland Mitigation project. 

East Bay Regional District, Lessons Learned

Over the past quarter century, a shifting contingent of Intertwine Alliance partners have taken three trips to the East Bay Regional Park District in California. The most recent visit was last December. Urban Greenspaces Institute Executive Director and Alliance Board Member Mike Houck has been part of it all; here he shares his major takeaways for our region.  

Taking the lead on Universal Design

Emphasizing ability over disability

Universal Design is a philosophy and approach that goes beyond ADA accessibility. It considers the needs and abilities of all users, while not skimping on aesthetics. Intertwine Partner Access Recreation, an expert in this emerging and sometimes misunderstood field, shares examples of its application and why it benefits everyone.

Examining everything

What antiracism work has meant for us

“I love Portland. But, in all honesty, I could never live here. It’s just too white,” shared Jessica Vazquez Torres, organizer/trainer at Crossroads Antiracism Organizing & Training. These words echoed over and over again for days after I completed The Intertwine Alliance’s three-day intensive antiracism workshop in October.

Framing the issue

Improving health by spending time outdoors

The "Health and Outdoors" breakout session at last week's Oregon Healthiest State Summit was standing-room only, clearly indicating that the idea of building communities where more people get outside more often is compelling. The just-launched Oregon Action Framework for Health and the Outdoors will provide direct support for communities -- especially underserved communities such as African Americans and American Indians -- to reduce the barriers that prevent people from spending more time outdoors.

Author Christina Rusnak

Landscape music

At the intersection of hiking and composing

Composer Christina Rusnak, who calls herself "a product of the transformative power of natural landscapes," has written music inspired by the Mt. Adams Wilderness and the Rogue River. How does she do it? Why does she do it? Read on to find out.