▶️ Developers Revise Bend Apartment Project

By Anyssa Bohanan
Central Oregon Daily

Months after an application was approved to build a four story apartment building overlooking McKay Park in Bend, the Evergreen Housing Development Group announced on Wednesday that several modifications have been made to their initial plan to satisfy businesses in the area.

The Evergreen Housing Development Group initially proposed their four story, 170 unit apartment building to the City of Bend earlier this year.

Despite public outcry, the project was officially approved at the end of March.

However, shortly after, two local businesses appealed the decision to the Land use board of appeals and Evergreen Housing began negotiating some changes.

We talked with William Smith Enterprises and Shevlin Dental about what they were hoping to see out of the project related to their Land Use Appeals, and we decided in order to move the project forward instead of going through multiple years of land use appeals that we would try to come to a mutual agreement that would satisfy everybody involved,” said Andrew Brand, Executive Director of Real Estate Development:

Those changes included reducing the number of apartment units from 170 to 141 and removing the top floor of the building to keep the height under the maximum of 45 feet, allowed by Bend’s Development Code.

“I think people are very passionate about this site and about this location,” Brand said. “I think a lot of people have differing opinions about growth in Bend in general.”

Some on hand at today’s hearing said they were happy the project is moving forward.

“It’s nice to see that a compromise has been reached between the appellants and the developer and we’ll get some more housing in Bend,” said Byron Buck. “I’m sorry to see the actual number reduced because this is a great site for apartments, but in the end of the day it’s going to move forward there will be 140 new apartments for needy people to rent.”

But others aren’t sure it will fix the housing issue in Bend.

“My concern is what kind of community that we’re buliding that we have all of these studios? They’re gonna charge a small fortune so these units are not affordable projects,” said Mike Walker. “This is not solving Bend’s housing needs! This is just one more expensive place for people who move in here, get the best jobs. Can you average barista live there? No.”

Evergreen says they’re hoping to break ground in the Spring or Summer of 2020 with move in dates of either late 2021 or Spring of 2022.

 

Oregon Senate Passes Rent Control Bill

Oregon is facing a housing crisis and lawmakers are scrambling to try and find solutions. One bill that could help was approved by the Oregon State Senate on Tuesday. The bill enhances protections for tenants and prohibits landlords from implementing high rent increases. SB 608 is now heading to the Oregon State House where it is also expected to pass. If passed it would be the country’s first state-wide rent control measure.

Central Oregon Daily’s Anyssa Bohanan has more on how the bill could affect tenants and landlords across the state.

Proposed Bill Could Bar Zoning for Single Family Homes

Today in Salem the House Committee on Human Services and Housing held its first hearing on HB-2001. The bill would allow for what is called “middle housing” on land currently zoned for single family homes. Middle housing is those housing types that fall between single family housing and large scale apartment complexes.
 
Central Oregon Daily’s Curtis Vogel has more on the bill and what communities it could affect.

Supper Club: Looking Ahead at 2018 – Part 2

This week’s Supper Club conversation is part two of looking at things to come in 2018. Donna sat down with three prominent Central Oregon citizens and discussed OSU-Cascades funding, PERS reform and affordable housing options.

Thanks to Mike Ficher, play-by-play announcer at COTV Sports, Dino Vendetti of Seven Peaks Ventures and Erin Foote Morgan, former Bend 2030 Executive Director, for joining us.

A special thanks to our Supper Club sponsors, Selco Community Credit Union, for giving us the time and resources to talk about the issues that impact our region every Tuesday night on Central Oregon Daily.

Supper Club: Bend’s State of the City

Bend Mayor Casey Roats gave his State of the City address Tuesday night at the What’s Brewing event hosted by the Bend Chamber, but he and two other city officials, Jon Skidmore and Russell Grayson, gave us a sneak preview of the event. They sat down with our News Director Curtis Vogel for this week’s Supper Club to talk about the proposed city budget and what the city’s role should be in making sure there is enough affordable housing for its residents.

Supper Club is sponsored by Selco Community Credit Union and Pine Tavern Restaurant.

Supper Club: Future of Housing in Central Oregon

Home prices have reached their prerecession levels in Bend and they’re increasing across Central Oregon. For longtime residents it might feel a little like déjà vu and the way things were right before the crash.

For this week’s edition of Supper Club we talk with real estate experts Brian Fratzke of Fratzke Commercial and Kim Gammond of COAR, and Jon Skidmore, assistant city manager of the City of Bend about the future of housing and whether we could be heading for another bubble.

Supper Club is sponsored by Pine Tavern Restaurant and Great American Furniture Warehouse.