|Former Rose Gardens Motel on Portland Road|
(See history of motel here)
to construct 180 units of affordable multi-family housing on approximately eight acres of land located at 3350 Portland Road (Attachment 1), beginning in spring 2017.On the one hand, this is great news. Included in the report is a chart from a different report, "Rough estimate of housing affordability" in the Salem area, and it identified a deficit of about 6,400 affordable homes for households that earn less than $25,000 annually.
This is a key parcel on Portland Road, and it will be good to see it redeveloped.
But on the other hand, it's also reasonable to ask whether such a homogeneous concentration of affordable housing is wise. It has seemed like affordable housing dispersed in mixed income neighborhoods has produced better results than concentration. The concentration here looks old-fashioned and not necessarily consistent with the larger vision for the corridor. A few years back, Council dropped the idea of a mixed use project here and changed the zoning. So in that regard this also represents a project of reduced ambition.
Readers who follow housing issues will know better and may have more to say on this and other aspects of the project. (Lots on homelessness and housing at CANDO, btw.)
Some of the envisioned subsidies for the Portland Road project include:
- $749,000 - North Gateway URA grant for project construction;
- $400,000 - City HOME funding for the Epping site with $300,000 for FY 2017-2018 and $100,000 for FY 2018-2019 (Applications for these funds must be submitted in December with City Council adoption in May and June);
- $650,000 - North Gateway URA funding for construction of an internal street into the property; and
- $100,000 - City HOME funding for the Caplinger Road site for FY 2017-2018
will target individuals and families earning 60 percent or less of Salem’s median income. A family of four will need to earn $34,320 or less per year to qualify.There are several more steps before these projects come to fruition, and this is an information report only.
- Another extension and amended purchase agreement on the Fairview Park purchase.
- An update on downtown "Opportunity Sites." It looks like the Marion Car Park may have a project once a title issue is cleared up. (See previous note on the sites here.)
Another factor here I should have mentioned is just how appropriate is the Epping site itself for affordable housing.
|The Epping property isn't very walkable by walkscore|
|AAA: Your Driving Costs 2015|
By this measure, the Cordon Road site is probably totally inappropriate, and it deserves a reconsideration and likely pass.
Totally missed the Resolution to join the Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) Cities Campaign!
From the Staff Report:
The Oregon Public Health Institute and the League of Oregon Cities, with the financial support of Kaiser Permanente, have teamed up to bring the Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) Cities Campaign to Oregon. The HEAL Campaign is designed to help civic leaders create healthy communities through policies that positively influence individual and family decisions related to nutrition and physical activity.
One aspect of the HEAL Campaign is the HEAL Cities Small Grants program, which is designed to support cities implementing HEAL policies....
The deadline to apply for HEAL Cities Small Grants is September 30, 2016. Staff is currently evaluating potential projects that are eligible for HEAL Cities Small Grants, and if Council adopts this resolution, will present a recommendation to apply for grant funding in a staff report to the City Council in September.
|HEAL on Land Use|
There's lots of "Land Use and Transportation" policy concepts under the campaign, so maybe something interesting could arise out of this. At the same time, the Staff Report is very clear to underline that
The City is not required to make any changes to existing policies, including the Salem Area Comprehensive Plan or its elements, by joining the campaign.Is this window dressing, or something substantive?
We already have - or already have had:
- In 2011 the County "I Love Me: Move Right, Eat Healthier" project
- In 2012 the "Community Health Improvement Partnership"
- And in 2014, what may or may not be successors to one or more of these these, the "5210" and "Pioneering Healthier Communities" projects
For example, the 2015 Marion County Community Health Assessment sees no problem with our current level of traffic violence and death:
|"achieved the Healthy People 2020 goal"|
But in the face of these walking deaths in 2015 - not even those in the whole county - is "achieving" that goal even an intelligible utterance?
- James Alton
- Caroline Storm
- William Hatch
- Travis Lane
- David McGregor
- Michael and Christine Crossland
- Rebecca Schoff
So the HEAL initiative "can't hurt, might help," but it does not seem likely to be very important, in the end, like the others, generating more PR than actual policy and results.