Multnomah Village residents worried about developers

Is the fear warranted or a case of 'not in my backyard?'

The shops at Multnomah Village, Dec. 26, 2014 (KOIN 6 News)
The shops at Multnomah Village, Dec. 26, 2014 (KOIN 6 News)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Two mixed use housing and retail developments have been proposed for Multnomah Village, a Southwest Portland neighborhood along Capitol Highway. Neighbors are worried the development will leave residents with no place to park. They also worry it could push out small businesses already there.

Steward Round lives a block away from the development site proposed by Urban Asset Advisors. It would replace the Children’s Program, which is next door the Starbucks.

“They’re proposing 71 units, so it’s a lot of cars that will be clogging up the side streets.” Round said. That’s why he’s started a petition for neighbors to voice their concerns about the new developments to city hall. It’s been less than a week and he already has more than a thousand signatures.

The petition asks the Portland City Council to only allow developers to build up to three stories in the Multnomah Village neighborhood and to mandate one parking space per apartment unit.

Neighborhood House, a social service agency, hopes to build at the site of the Children’s Program, on the corner of SW 35th Ave. and Capitol Highway. Executive Director Richard Nitti said they are willing to work with the neighborhood to ensure a design they are all happy with.

“On Capitol Highway here we will not build higher than three stories and we will try to put as much parking into the property as possible. The people we will house will be older people, not all of them will be driving, so we don’t think you need one space for one apartment.”

Nitti said the focus of Neighborhood House is seniors and veterans 50 and older. While he understands neighbors want to keep the small town feel they have grown to love, he said there is an affordable housing crisis that has to be addressed.

Calls to Urban Asset Advisors have not been returned.


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