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Cascade Campus says goodbye to Trades & Industry program

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Left: Contractor JE Dunn transformed the old motor pool building at 6400 N. Cutter Circle into the new Swan Island Trades Center. Right: A variety of equipment had to be removed from the old motor pool facility, including this truck washing unit.

PCC’s Cascade Campus said farewell to one of its longstanding programs this summer. The Trades & Industry program has grown up and moved out, though not too far away.

With $3.6 million from the voter-approved bond passed in 2008, and an additional $1 million from the Oregon Department of Community College and Workforce Development, PCC was able to purchase a site three miles to the west on Swan Island, a perfect place for its career technical education courses. Swan Island is one of Portland’s most active industrial communities, with manufacturing, shipping, construction and distribution all being represented with significant business operations.

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The new Swan Island Trades Center will house the Facilities Maintenance Technology HVAC-R, Electrical Trades Apprenticeship, and Fiber Optics programs.

General contractor JE Dunn spent the summer preparing the five-acre site, a former State of Oregon Motor Pool facility, for the college’s newest Center. They first removed old equipment, including a 20,000-gallon gasoline and a 12,000-gallon ethanol tank. Metals, old gear, appliances and furniture were sold or recycled. Auto lifts and related equipment were moved to PCC’s automotive program at the Sylvania Campus or donated to local high school programs.

The existing 11,000 square foot structure was renovated, and an additional 12,000 square feet was added for classes and lab space for Facilities Maintenance Technology HVAC-R (heating, ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration), Electrical Trades Apprenticeship, and Fiber Optics.

By June, PCC staff began moving large equipment out of the Carter Technology and Education Building and down to Swan Island.

PCC’s newest center – the Swan Island Trades Center – will be open for fall term 2014. An opening celebration will take place Wednesday, Sept 17, 2014 in partnership with the Swan Island Business Association.

As the center grows, PCC will look to adding classes that will open new opportunities within the trades in fields such as Electrical Generation, Photovoltaic, Solar Energy, Geo-Thermal Energy, Wind Power and Sustainability.

PCC’S 2008 voter-approved $374 million bond program is increasing opportunities for residents to access quality, affordable higher education close to where they live and work. Additional classrooms, updated equipment and technology, and advanced workforce training programs are helping to pave the way for future employment options. For more information, visit

About Karen Kane

Karen Kane is the Community Relations Manager for the Sylvania Campus. A passionate storyteller and communicator, Karen has told the stories for several organizations in Portland, including the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry and the ... more »