Following my update on the development of TriMet’s property at 2133 N Argyle St yesterday, REACH CDC has now issued their own update on the project.
Here are a few of my thoughts on the post:
- The tone of post is very much driven by the urgency of affordable housing needs, and frankly, that’s been the justification for making sure this project moves forward. When faced with the question of holding up this project or relaxing the rules to keep it on track, we’ve seen local government take the latter. It’s politically the easier path to take, but does the need for housing now always outweigh all other current and future needs of the neighborhood? That’s the question neighbors are asking not because they don’t want affordable housing but because of how significant this particular property is to Kenton to be mixed-use.
- We now have a current site plan for the project to share. While even REACH CDC noted that the “commercial space has been repurposed into community rooms,” it’s now more like the commercial space has been reduced and converted into a single additional community room to add to the sole community room originally part of the design. In turn, REACH CDC is able to pick up additional residential space by adding ground-floor housing units since the project lost its 5th story. Along with slightly lowering the total number of units to 189, more larger units have been added to the project, which makes the programming more in line with goals of the N/NE Housing Strategy.
- There isn’t any mention of trying to save the commercial space or the use of an exemption to prevailing wage law. Reading between the lines here gives the impression that REACH CDC is thinking they won’t be locating funds to add the commercial space back and wants to move on from it.