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Pete Springer/OPB

Changes are afoot at the North Park Blocks in Portland. Two colleges — Pacific Northwest College of Art and Oregon College of Oriental Medicine — are resettling near Portland’s Old Town neighborhood in the coming years. The colleges will bring over 1000 students, instructors, and staff members to the urban area currently dotted with many social services. Neighborhood advocates hope it will bring increased economic activity to an area that some see as blighted.

In other business news, analysts are seeing an increase in small business loans, a good sign of a recovering economy (though real estate trends remain relatively dismal). Meanwhile, the battle over the economics of several potential coal terminals in the Northwest continues to rage, with each side lobbing arguments over the economic wisdom of going forward.

Would you welcome colleges coming to Old Town? Are you a small business owner finding that capital is more easy to come by? Do you have an economic argument for or against coal terminals in the Northwest? What business news is on your mind?

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