February 28, 2018
A series of announcements today demonstrates the City’s aggressive support for affordable housing. Today the City announced it has identified a new site for development using housing bond funds to accommodate as many as 75 affordable housing units, a new partnership with Home Forward associated with Portland’s Housing Bond to help maximize Bond resources, and approved an Inclusionary Housing project, adding an additional 15 units of affordable housing.
New Bond Acquisition
The Portland Housing Bureau (PHB) announced it has entered into a purchase and sale agreement to acquire a Northeast Portland property in the Roseway-Cully neighborhood for development under the Bond. The property has the potential to accommodate as many as 75 new housing units.
“This is a rapidly gentrifying area where we have had few affordable housing resources available to make a difference,” said Mayor Ted Wheeler. “Acquiring this property is exactly what the Bond was supposed to do—give us a tool to respond where we see families face a growing risk of being priced out.”
Under a community framework adopted by City Council, Bond investments should prevent displacement and provide new housing opportunity, with a focus on communities of color, those experiencing homelessness, immigrant and refugee communities, and other populations disproportionately impacted by the housing emergency.
PHB expects to bring a final acquisition to Portland City Council in June 2018. PHB is accepting and reviewing proposals to acquire land and existing buildings on an ongoing basis. For more information, visit www.portlandhousingbond.com
New Home Forward Partnership
On Wednesday, City Council approved an agreement to contract with Home Forward for the Asset Management of Bond projects. Home Forward will provide services such as compliance monitoring, property management oversight, financial management, and will oversee the physical condition of Bond projects on behalf of the Portland Housing Bureau.
“Capitalizing on the core competencies of another public entity and longtime partner is an efficient, cost-effect way to maximize Bond resources and reach our goals,” said PHB interim director Shannon Callahan. “Home Forward’s experience and expertise in managing and operating affordable housing will help us ensure we are providing healthy environments for the individuals and families who will live in Bond properties.”
Home Forward manages a portfolio of more than 6,000 units of affordable housing, including housing with supportive services.
“Home Forward has been a partner of the City on the Bond from the very beginning, and we are happy to be continuing this partnership to make these homes a reality,” said Michael Buonocore, Executive Director of Home Forward.
Also on Wednesday, City Council approved a tax exemption for the 26th & Ankeny Apartments, which will provide 15 units affordable to households earning up to 80% of area median income (or $47,800 for a family of two) for 99 years, as part of the Inclusionary Housing Program.
The 26th & Ankeny Apartments joins 17 other projects participating in Inclusionary Housing since the program went into effect in February 2017, for a total of 709 new units and 92 new affordable units in otherwise market-rate developments. It is the third project for which the developer, Urban Development Group, has opted in to the Inclusionary Housing Program voluntarily in order to benefit from the parking exemption and other incentives.
The Multiple-Unit Limited Tax Exemption program, or MULTE, is one of the financial incentives provided to Inclusionary Housing projects choosing to provide affordable units affordable rather than paying a fee-in-lieu.
In addition to the ten-year tax exemption provided by the MULTE, this project will receive an exemption of the Affordable Housing Construction Excise Tax that would have otherwise been due on the affordable units.
“Inclusionary Housing is an important tool to ensure that we have housing Portlanders can afford throughout the city,” said Mayor Ted Wheeler. “It is essential for developers to step forward to be part of the solution to the housing crisis.”