A proposal to build 40 affordable apartments in Sellwood is at risk because of minimum parking requirements. Currently, to qualify for a parking waiver, a development must be within certain distances of “20 minute” transit during the rush hours. How that level of service is defined is open to some interpretation, but it also ignores the holistic context of some of Portland’s neighborhoods.
Take a minute and email Commissioner Eudaly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Ask her to look into this situation in Sellwood. Ask her to work to remove barriers to more housing and let her know you think we need to build affordable housing, not more parking, in Portland. If you can, cc or bcc email@example.com so we know our campaign is working.
Portland needs affordable housing much more than it needs required parking. The solution to Portland’s parking problems is not to build garages that will be a drag on our environment and economy, but parking management that ensures the equitable and efficient use of our on-street parking.
Commissioner Chloe Eudaly holds the Bureau of Development Services (BDS) in her portfolio and she was elected on a platform promising to address Portland’s housing crisis. Commissioner Eudaly can ask BDS to look into this issue and determine if there is a way to interpret the code to allow this project to go forward. If not, she may need to instigate changes to the inclusionary housing package to provide for greater flexibility. Almost 3 months have passed since affordable housing became mandatory and there has been very little utilization of the program. This project would be a big win, for housing advocates and for lower income people wanting to live in a complete neighborhood like Sellwood.