Property owners, their representatives, and developers may now begin submitting proposals for Portland’s Housing Bond.
The Portland Housing Bureau (PHB) released a Request for Interest (RFI) on October 23, 2017, seeking opportunities to acquire land or existing residential buildings of twenty units or more.
Portland voters approved Portland’s Housing Bond in 2016, authorizing the City to issue up to $258.4 million in general obligation bonds for the development or acquisition of affordable housing. PHB expects to build and purchase a minimum of 1,300 housing units with these funds.
“We’re encouraging proposals for both traditional and nontraditional development opportunities,” said PHB Director Kurt Creager. “Unlike our traditional funding process, this RFI does not solicit competitive bids. Instead, we will determine which proposals best serve the public good and announce results on a rolling basis.”
Proposals will be evaluated in part by their alignment with Portland’s Housing Bond Policy Framework, which was developed by an 18-member advisory body with input from nearly 1,000 community members to guide the expenditure of bond funds.
The Framework, which was adopted by Portland City Council on October 11, sets an overall goal of 1,300 affordable housing units (including 650 family-sized units, and 600 deeply affordable units), and emphasizes the importance of serving Communities of Color, families, and households experiencing homelessness or at imminent risk of homelessness or displacement, among other priorities. It also seeks to focus resources geographically in areas at high risk for gentrification as well as in High Opportunity Areas.
“This is another exciting milestone and a step forward in addressing our housing crisis,” said Mayor Ted Wheeler. “The community has provided us with a strategic direction for these resources. With that in place, we’re ready to move quickly on this historic opportunity to house families and stem displacement.”