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Photo Courtesy of the Lake Oswego Library
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
PDX multifamily elicits concern
Not your average developer. It would have been nice if residents didn't have to sign petitions and make a fuss to get attention, but the city put the developer in an awkward position: follow the code and develop a tall, dense project, or work with neighbors to have the building fit the site. If the city would only listen to the neighborhoods in the first place and adjust the development codes accordingly, anger and resentment would be minimal, and the quality of life in the city would be preserved for everyone. But the Central Planners have other ideas about how people should live. Do they live next door to the dense infill dwelling units they want built throughout the city? That does not sound realistic to me. People with power tend to insulate themselves from the negative impacts of their decisions.
The design for a Northeast Portland multifamily development has been modified in an effort to respond to neighbors’ concerns – including excessive height.
After officials from Eugene-based Paradigm Properties twice met with neighborhood residents to discuss the project at Northeast Seventh Avenue and Russell Street, the developer reduced the proposed number of floors from eight to six. This would reduce the height of the building, designed by Eugene-based Dustrud Architecture, to approximately 60 feet, said Christopher Looney, Paradigm Properties’ vice president of development. The number of mostly one- and two-bedroom units in the 72,000-square-foot apartment complex would drop from 80 to 63, he said.
Some neighbors claim the proposed building would stand too tall, be inconsistent with the rest of the neighborhood and cause traffic congestion, according to an online petition demanding a redesign.
Paradigm Properties owner Dan Neal said he wants to work with neighborhood residents.
“We agreed to reduce the size of the project to take into account many of their concerns,” he said. “My sense is that everybody recognizes that it was a positive move.”
Along with agreeing to reduce the height of the development, he said he plans to include an underground parking structure with 44 spaces and perform a traffic study.
Neal said he hopes construction will start late next spring and finish in 12 to 14 months. Eugene-based Essex General Construction will be the contractor.
The project is Paradigm Properties’ second in the Portland area. Construction began recently onThe Boathouse, a six-story apartment building with 133 units in the John’s Landing neighborhood.