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Culture » Take Me Home

Portland Restaurants Come Down to Meet Housing Needs

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More than 50 percent of Oregonians spend more than 30 percent of their income on housing. Thus, it is not surprising that affordable housing has become a hot issue from the governor's office to the Portland Development Commission and very much so here in Bend. Even though more affordable housing is desperately needed in Portland and here in Bend, getting people to agree on how to solve the problem is difficult.

Diners, well-loved greasy spoons and family restaurants are going the way of the do-do in Portland. The overhaul of the Pearl District from factories and warehouses to art galleries and upscale apartments began in the mid-1980s when the neighborhood was rezoned from industrial to multi-use. Block after block still falls to demolition with no hope for the single story restaurants built in days gone by, with nearly all of the previous character of the neighborhood erased.

Objections from local residents cite concern with the change in the character of their neighborhood. The reality is that with limited resources and land, higher density construction and building up has become the recommended solution. This can be difficult for residents to accept and Portland is no different from Bend in this regard.

Currently, yet another 12-story mixed use complex of 150 market rate units is going up in the Pearl District. Just north of the Pearl in the St. Johns neighborhood of Portland, Pearl developer Patrick Kessi tore down an old family restaurant by the St. Johns bridge to erect Marvel 29, a 165-unit building. Within four months, the rents for the 400-square-foot studio apartments jumped from $900 to $1,300 per month.

Of all the new construction in Portland, only 411 apartment units built last year were designated for those earning below 30 percent of the area median income. The 126-affordable apartment units and 19 market rate units being built at Oliver Station in the Lents neighborhood of Portland are going up where the Copper Penny has stood for decades. The building will be located in the outer southeast section of town, as far away from the Pearl district as possible without crossing the county line. For now, Portland has a shortage of 20,000 affordable housing units and any affordable housing is a start, even though locals will remember the ghosts of restaurants (and bars)-past for years to come.

LOW

215 SW Maricopa Dr, Bend, OR 97702

2 beds, 2.5 baths, 960 square feet, .14 acre lot | Built in 1983

$198,990

Listed by John L Scott, Bend

MID

21391 Eagle Crossing, Bend, OR 97701

5 beds, 4 baths, 2470 square feet, .1211 acre lot | Built in 2016

$348,817

Listed by New Home Star Oregon, LLC

HIGH

19545 Buck Canyon Road, Bend, OR 97702

5 beds, 4 baths, 4495 square feet, 2.44 acre lot | Built in 2014

$1,599,000

Listed by Bend Premier Real Estate

Photos and listing info from Central Oregon Multiple Listing Service

About The Author

Nick Nayne, Principal Broker

Principal Broker at The Broker Network Realty in Bend, OR. Over 12 years experience in Real Estate working with buyers, sellers and investment properties.

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