Category: Construction

Demolition on NE Holladay Street

In March, Riverside Carpentry purchased 8225 NE Holladay Street and now plans to demolish the 100-year-old single-family residence. A second demolition permit seeks to remove the detached garage and shed simultaneously. The property is adjacent to the Don Pedro Mexican Food restaurant on 82nd Avenue and outside the residential section of Portland’s Comprehensive Plan Map. Consequentially, the permits are not subject to a 35-Day Demolition Delay.

In the early 1900s, the property housed a small cottage on the land with an original address of 2049 Holladay Ave. Ivan Swift purchased that home sometime after 1911. According to the Sunday Oregonian, the Swift family celebrated the birth of their daughter at that home on September 5th, 1918. Sometime late in the 1920s, the Swifts updated the house, installing a sewer line and running water.

2049 East Holladay Ave Sanborn Maps 1924

The two-bedroom, one bathroom, 489-square-foot home’s real estate listing shows very few updates over its 100 years. However, it has received at least one addition at the back of the building, expanding the structure. The property is now zoned Commercial Mixed Use 2 and could support a variety of medium-scale redevelopment. Projects in this zone generally support four stories, except in locations where bonuses allow up to five levels and offer a mixed commercial and residential use.

Expect demolition crews onsite in the next few months. Workers will also remove the driveway’s curb cut, cap the sewer, and fill the basement cavity. Look for updates when the developer submits building permits for the replacement structure.

Three Townhouses on SE 93rd

This week Sunstone Homes submitted permit applications to construct three townhouses near SE Division Street and Interstate 205. The proposed townhouses will each contain four bedrooms and an attached single-car garage. Demolition crews will remove the existing 1944-era single-family home at 2421 SE 93rd Avenue to make room for the new two-story units.

The 63-by-75-foot lot has enough room to comfortably support the proposed homes, each with 1500 square feet of living space. The designers will provide two full bathrooms and one half-bath for each townhouse. 

SE 93rd Avenue ends in a cul-de-sac near SE Division street, but pedestrians have access to the adjacent Division TriMet FX bus line. That express transit system starts service in September. Additionally, the I205 Multi-use-path is across the street from this property, making these homes the ideal location for commuters regardless of their chosen mode of transportation.

Over the last five years, this block has seen substantial redevelopment. The pandemic delayed some of the larger projects. However, this recent proposal indicates that this area will continue to develop with denser housing options. If approved, expect work to begin at the end of the year or sometime in 2023.

SE 78th Closed for Watermain Work

Today the Portland Water Bureau (PWB) closed one block of SE 78th Avenue between SE Alder and Morrison Streets. Crews installed a new watermain to provide expanded service to the area. A four townhome development is underway on this street and should benefit from this water system upgrade.

The project, listed as ID W02815, only covers one block. PWB staff should complete work within a few days and will have the road open to through traffic soon. Patching the pavement may happen at a later date. Users of this street should use caution in the vicinity of the trench until the crews fully restore the road surface.

Filed under:

Obscured 11 Townhouse Development

A planned development at 2321 SE 89th Avenue will add eleven new townhouses behind an existing single-family residence. The Land Use Review application indicates the property could soon support twelve homes with the new two-story units tucked behind the original single-story house built-in 1927. A five-food-wide paved walkway would lead to the townhouses from the street.

Additional onsite parking does not appear to be part of the application. However, the property is located 500 feet from SE Division Street, where the new TriMet FX 2-Division bus service will offer fast and frequent transportation. SE 89th Avenue is also a bike-friendly street with speed bumps to maintain slower automotive traffic.

This project provides near maximum density to the property while retaining the nearly 100-year-old home. Although the new construction is not invisible from the street, the design works to obscure the new townhomes from sight and maintain the visual continuity for the neighbors. If the land use is approved, the developers will need to secure building permits. The permitting process can take months to complete. Consequentially, work may wait until winter or sometime in 2023.

NE 78th Eight Unit Row House Project

The new owner of 37 NE 78th Avenue is seeking Early Assistance ahead of constructing eight row houses. The developer intends to build four units on each of the property’s two lots. Demolition crews will need to remove the existing 1890-built structure to make way for the new homes.

The original building was a one-and-a-half-story small home, first addressed as 325 E. 78th Street North. In 1896, six years after its construction, the family added a second home to the large parcel. Records indicate that the Burke family owned the second home until the 1950s. By 1924, the two houses existed on separate lots, with the older one featuring a new address of 39 E. 78th Street North. In the 1930s renumbering of Portland, the home changed its address to 37 NE 78th Avenue.

325 E. 78th Street North Sanborn Map 1909

Over the years, previous owners of the 1890-era building added onto the house, erasing all signs of its original structure. Despite its age, it lost any historic architectural significance due to the additions and poor maintenance. The home’s 2021 real estate listing informed potential buyers that it would require a complete remodel or site redevelopment.

39 E. 78th Street North Sanborn Map 1924

If the City approves the site’s transformation, it will feature a 20-foot-long driveway between the two row-house buildings, possibly allowing for onsite parking. At 10,000 square feet, the combined property has suitable space to handle the eight planned units. A similar development on SE Washington Street fit ten row houses on a lot with comparable demotions. This project is in the pre-planning phase and could change before the developer submits building permits. With current permitting delays in Portland, construction will likely occur in 2023.

I-84 East Exit 7 Closure

Starting May 8th, the Oregon Department of Transportation will close the Interstate 84 East Halsey/99th Ave off-ramp. This temporary closure allows TriMet construction crews the needed workspace to install support piers for a new MAX bridge over the freeway. Project managers expect to reopen Exit 7 to eastbound I-84 drivers on June 24th, 2022.

Work performed over the next two months will create the support structure for a new MAX Red Line bridge over I-84, located just east of Interstate 205. The bridge will provide pedestrian and bike access to the Gateway Green park and add a second track to the single-track rail system in the area. This project is part of the TriMet Better Red initiative to extend the MAX Red Line westward to serve ten more stations. Additionally, crews will install bidirectional rails in places with share tracks, speeding up the whole system.

TriMet suggests a detour onto Exit 6 towards I-205 South during the off-ramp closure and then use the Glisan Street/Stark Street exit. Drivers will follow NE Glisan east to NE 99th Avenue. Plan accordingly for this closure by using the ODOT TripCheck.com website for route information and updates. Better Red crews will continue their work in the area until its completion in 2024.

Proposed Chick-fil-A on SE Stark

A recent land-use Early Assistance application indicates Chick-fil-A may soon open a new restaurant on SE Stark Street. If approved, developers will demolish the 1984-era building and construct a new fast food restaurant with a drive-thru window. Located at 9950 SE Stark Street, the 36,590 square-foot half-block property currently houses an adult entertainment club and bar.

The Chick-fil-A development team intends to construct a 4,991 square foot building with 98 indoor seats for guests. Outdoor canopies and an outdoor eating area with 12 patio seats would surround the new building. The property sits between SE Stark and SE Washington Streets, aligned at SE 99th Avenue near Mall 205. The site offers a variety of vehicle access points and is near the number 15 TriMet bus line. Other Chick-fil-A restaurants tend to attract many visitors, sometimes with lines spilling onto the neighboring street. However, this proposed Chick-fil-A is just six miles from the Clackamas restaurant and seven miles from the Gresham location. That density of stores may reduce peak demand for the proposed eatery and avoid traffic issues sometimes seen at other Chick-fil-A sites.

Developers use Early Assistance applications during the pre-planning phase of a project. Many proposals do not continue past this stage, and this Chick-fil-A may never materialize in this location. However, the addition of a popular destination restaurant in the area could draw in more visitors and improve business for neighboring stores. Expect to see updates regarding building permits if this project moves forward.

Four Townhomes on SE 78th

Work is underway preparing 705 SE 78th Avenue for the addition of four new townhomes. Each of the two-story units contains a pair of bedrooms above with a bonus room on the main level. The original 1940s home will remain on its own lot with only minor modifications to the breezeway-attached garage.

GPB Development purchased the property in 2019 and began permit work in late 2021. A lot line adjustment will split the property into a north and south half. The owners walled in the garage door that had opened onto the alley. The new townhouses will now block vehicle access from the south. Recently, excavation crews added new large diameter gravel to the alley to support the heavy equipment accessing the construction site.

Image from Google Maps

Each new home features a similar floor plan. However, the street-facing residence differs subtly. That townhouse has an inverted layout compared to the other three units, and its doorway faces east. Residents access the other homes from the north. Plans call for a spacious entryway, full bathroom, and den with double doors at the front of the main floors. The back of the units combine an open kitchen and a living room. The second floors have two bedrooms with walk-in closets. Designers compartmentalized the shared three-quarters bathroom located between the bedrooms. Residents can close off the toilet or shower from the central double vanity room, maximizing the concurrent use of that space.

Site map showing unit placement on lot with paved pathway and back patio

The City assigned address 725-731 SE 78th Avenue to the new townhouses, numbered from west to east. A small staircase from the street leads to a walkway that guides visitors to the front of each unit. Large sliding glass doors open onto a covered back patio space adjacent to the alleyway.

The architect employs several design elements that obscure the scale of this development. A shared hipped-roof and street-facing door on the first unit gives the appearance of a single-family residence. Recessed doorways hide the number of entryways, and consistent porch rooflines tie the whole building together. Looks for foundation work to begin soon, with principle construction occurring this summer.

Renovation with Two ADUs on Burnside and NE 74th

This week, heavy equipment cleared a small grove of trees at 6 NE 74th Avenue. The work makes way for a pair of two-story Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU) proposed for the property. Kova Development recently purchased the 1926-era home in October of last year. Since then, the developer has renovated the original house and substantially increased its livable space.

Fronted on E Burnside Street, the two new residencies will join the recently updated home on the back half of the site. The original home faces NE 74th Avenue and sits close to the sidewalk, occupying less than half the available property. The back portion of the lot previously served as the house’s driveway and parking pad but lacked any notable structures and had become overgrown with small trees and shrubbery.

Google Maps view of 6 NE 74th Avenue 2017

Remodel work on the nearly century-old house is extensive. Crews replaced the roof that the previous owners had left tarp-covered for years. New windows and siding now wrap the structure, sealing its once porous exterior. The owners removed all interior finishes down to the studs and reworked the insulation, electrical, and plumbing on the main level. A recently approved permit allows for a near doubling of livable floor area by creating habitable space in the basement. Workers will construct two bedrooms with egress window wells, a full bathroom, and a living room on the subterranean level.

Plans for the new ADU units are not yet public. The design and orientation should have a noticeable impact on the property’s appearance from E Burnside Street. Look for ongoing construction activity at the site over the remaining months of 2022. This block should appear more populated by next year, and the neighborhood will have two new homes.

East Burnside Lane Closure

Update: All lanes on E Burnside are open again after crews complete work for the day. Barricades block the gravel-filled hole made earlier.


Today, the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) closed the eastbound lane of E Burnside Street from SE 81st to 82nd Avenues. Road signs are directing blocked traffic onto SE 81st Avenue around the construction. The TriMet number 20 bus line is not affected by this closure and is permitted past the detour.

An excavator is currently removing broken pavement and digging a trench along the south curb. Crews have blocked the north driveways for the Chevron gas station and Hong Phat Food Center. However, both businesses have alternate vehicle access along other streets. Drivers should plan to avoid this area while work is underway. Additionally, bikes and pedestrians may need to find safe routes around the worksite.

This article will be updated with information from PBOT staff regarding the purpose and duration of this roadwork project.

Detour onto SE 81st Avenue for eastbound Burnside traffic near 82nd Avenue