Posted by Michael Andersen (News Editor) on March 11th, 2014 at 12:58 pm
(Renderings by Myrhe Group Architects)
A large lot on inner North Portland’s Williams Avenue corridor would become one of the city’s biggest new housing-retail projects under a proposal made public last week.
The site between Williams, Vancouver, Mason and Skidmore that currently hosts the Oregon Association of Minority Entrepreneurs and Ethiopian restaurant Dalo’s Kitchen would get 268 apartments and townhouse-style units plus, 25,370 square feet of commercial space and what the architect calls a “woonerf” running down the middle of the block: a narrow Dutch-style street that allows cars to pass through but treats them as “guests.”
The project is the latest in a building boom that’s about to change Williams — nationally known as an example of “bike-oriented development” — in much the way Southeast Division Street has changed in the last year.
“Within two to three years, you’re going to have over 1,000 new residents in that stretch, you’re going to have 300 office workers,” said Stephen Gomez, land use chair of the Boise Neighborhood Association. “Williams is going to be a completely different street.”
The planned complex, which will consist of a six-story building along Skidmore, a five-story building along Williams and a three-story building with front stoops facing Vancouver Avenue, would sit on top of a new underground parking garage with 237 auto parking spaces, 185 of them for residents. The other 52 stalls will serve the commercial space, which will be slightly smaller than the 30,000-square-foot New Seasons store built a few blocks away in 2013.
Boise NA president Kay Newell said she’s been impressed with the project’s supply of auto parking — there’ll be enough spaces for two-thirds of apartment dwellers to park a car on site if they choose — and its development team, which approached her and other key neighbors about a year ago, long before they even bought the site.
“They listen to our suggestions, modify them and use whatever they can,” Newell said. “I wish that all of the builders had these same standards. … We’ve got some good developers in the community, but these guys are outstanding.”