On December 17th, the Portland City Council will host a public hearing on amendments to six urban renewal areas (URAs). The package of changes includes a potential expansion of the Central Eastside URA that would provide funding for infrastructure and redevelopment investments that would create jobs, particularly near the new Portland/Milwaukie Light Rail station areas.
On May 7, 2014, Portland City Council through Resolution No. 37072 directed the Portland Development Commission and City of Portland staff to begin processing amendments to six urban renewal areas (URAs). With approval, these amendments would reduce the impact of urban renewal on taxing jurisdictions; provide resources to meet economic development, redevelopment, and affordable housing goals; and support Portland State University. Specific to the Buckman neighborhood area, the package of changes includes a potential expansion of the Central Eastside URA that would provide funding for infrastructure and redevelopment investments that would create jobs, particularly near the new Portland/Milwaukie Light Rail station areas.
With amendment approval, the inner east side might see the following:
- More resources to invest in projects in the Central Eastside Urban Renewal Area, SE 12th Avenue west to the Willamette River, such as storefront improvement grants and other business assistance along commercial corridors (e.g., MLK and Grand).
- Increased funding would be available for PDC to purchase and redevelop the ‘ODOT blocks’ (the three vacant properties near the base of the Hawthorne Bridge).
- Additional resources to invest in infrastructure improvements near the Clinton Triangle area that would increase pedestrian and automobile access near the intersection of SE 12th and Powell Blvd.
- It is estimated that the changes would provide approximately $6 million in additional resources to invest in affordable housing. Portland Housing Bureau staff and the URA Amendment Advisory Committee have discussed the possibility of investing the ~$6 million in affordable housing in the Clinton Triangle area near the new light rail station.
On December 17, 2014, City Council will host a public hearing on the proposed amendments.
For additional information, visit the project website: http://www.pdc.us/for-partners/public-participation/ura-amendments.aspx
Submitted by Susan Lindsay