Category: New Residence

Infill House on Burnside with Hidden Parking

Construction crews are wrapping up work on a two-story single-family residence at  7171 E Burnside Street. The sizable infill-home features four bedrooms and a single-car garage accessed from the back of the property. At the builder’s current pace, the new home could become available for purchase this fall.


Original article published February 18th, 2022

This week, construction crews prepared a new flag lot on E Burnside for a forthcoming single-family residence. Located at a recently created address of 7171 E Burnside Street, the two-story home will feature four bedrooms and a single-car garage. Unlike most infill-homes with the garage door dominating the front of the structure, designers of this house placed the attached garage behind the home.

Plans for the home show a 27-foot wide home extending back 42 feet. The front door sits between a half-bathroom and a ground-floor bedroom at the front of the house. The floor opens up to a living room and dining room from the entryway. The open floor-plan creates a long 33-foot by 16-foot room, ending in a kitchen at the rear of the house. A ductless fireplace with TV hookups above the mantel is at the center of the main floor. A door from the dining room leads to the single-car garage positioned at the northeast corner of the structure and setback nine feet from the northern edge of the home. This recessed placement allows a vehicle to make the 90 degrees turn from the ally into the parking space.

Up a flight of stairs, a ten-foot by ten-foot bedroom and a shared bathroom occupy the front of the second floor. A large family room and another ten-foot by ten-foot bedroom take up the center portion of this level. At the back of the house, a bedroom suite fills the remainder of the floor. Inside that room, a walk-in closet over half the size of the standard bedrooms sits to the right. The 16-foot by 12-foot main bedroom features a tray ceiling with a suspended fan. The ensuite has a shower, spa tub, toilet room, and dual vanity.

The project’s layout and design adhere to contemporary higher-end home construction standards. However, limitations created by the site’s location moved the project towards a classical arrangement. For many years, the Portland Bureau of Transportation has asked developers to place new driveways on side streets, reducing possible collisions on arterial roads like E Burnside. That directive influenced the need for a driveway entrance from NE 72nd Avenue. The Developers took additional space from the original property at 7 NE 72nd Avenue and created an alleyway leading to the rear of the new property.

Portland Maps image of 7171 E Burnside

Before WWII, most homes hid parking behind the house. It was not until the 1950s that most new homes placed the garage prominently at the front of a residence. Over the decades, the width of a house’s garage door signaled the homeowner’s prosperity. That valuation has recently decreased with changing perceptions status symbols.

Although vehicle storage is no longer a key sign of wealth, many new infill homes still offer attached garages, often requiring two-thirds the width of a home. This layout pushes living space to the back of the building, sometimes isolating occupants from the activities in the community. Although this building’s design may not have intently looked to the pre-war designs of American architecture, the benefit of placing the parking at the rear should create a more attractive building and perhaps encourage other builders to reconsider a vehicle’s place in the home.

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.

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.

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.

Two Townhomes Join 1925 House

The new owners of a 1925 era home at 400 NE 91st Avenue recently demolished a detached garage on the property, making way for two new townhomes. The 100-foot by 100-foot wide lot is across NE 91st Avenue from Columbia Christian School and abutting the campus’s northeast parking lot. Crews will remodel the original home during the site’s redevelopment.

Google Maps view of 400 NE 91st Avenue

The 1,328 square foot building at the site is part of the original four dwellings built on this block nearly a century ago. The single-story home wore the address of 102 East 91st Street N before Portland’s Great Renumbering of 1931-1933. The removed garage was not original to the property.

1928 Sanborn Map – 102 East 91st Street N

FX Homes bought this site in October of 2021. They now propose the construction of two single-story townhomes on the southern half of the property. The low-slung scope of the development will match the stature of surrounding homes in the area. Houses on this segment of NE 91st Ave are effectively situated within the Columbia Christian School campus, creating a unique residential atmosphere with street activities tied closely to the school’s schedule.

Although early in the process, redevelopment of this site appears to take queues from the existing architecture in the area and respect the scale of the neighboring properties. By retaining a classic Portland home, the developers should appease preservationists while adding more housing to the neighborhood. Look for increased construction work at this site later in the year and the creation of two new homes.

Glisan and 74th Affordable Housing Meeting

We All Rise and Related Northwest invite residents and business owners to a public meeting regarding the Glisan and 74th Affordable Housing project. The in-person and online event will take place on April 14th at 6:30 PM. The developer hopes to attain a building permit by the end of 2022, with construction beginning soon after. The City has a website for those interested in following the project’s progress, and the developer produced a one-page fact sheet that includes information about the upcoming meeting. This public forum is the best opportunity for the community to ask questions and voice opinions about this development.

By early 2023, demolition crews will remove the former Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) building at 432 NE 74th Ave. Before that time, the current short-term tenants, African Youth & Community Organization (AYCO) and Portland Indigenous Marketplace, must relocate into new facilities. Once crews clear the site, the developer will begin constructing 137 units of affordable housing split between two four-story buildings.

Early rendering of 7450 NE Glisan

Housing at the site will serve families and individuals earning 30% and 60% of Area Median Income (AMI). The site will contain a wide assortment of apartments ranging from studio to four-bedroom units. The smaller structure at the northwest corner of the site offers 41 units of Permanent Supportive Housing reserved for the formerly homeless or people at risk of homelessness. The large “U” shaped building will contain the remaining 96 units intended to serve families. Homes will range in floorspace from 400 square feet to 1,200 square feet, with rents ranging from $507 to $1,616 per month.

Affordable housing is just one part of the support system built into this project. Wrap-around services delivered by Catholic Charities and culturally specific family services through Immigrant & Refugee Community Organization (IRCO) place residents on a path to financial stability and success. Ground floor commercial space on NE Glisan Street will offer a Café with Commercial Kitchen, offering residents culinary and barista training opportunities. Other storefronts in the building support small business incubator spaces.

Glisan and 74th Affordable Housing project’s site plan

The development will provide several community-facing amenities intended to blend the complex into the neighborhood. Developers plan for a Community Garden at the south end of the site, acting as a buffer between the new tall building and the block’s existing single-family homes. The courtyard spaces will include a playground, outdoor grill, picnic seating areas, and a walking path running throughout the property. Onsite parking for residents is included on the main level with access from NE 75th and 74th Avenues, alleviating pressures on local street parking.

Highland Christian Center will host the April public meeting in their Fellowship Hall located at 7600 NE Glisan Street. People planning on attending in person or remotely are encouraged to review the fact sheet before the event. Look for project designs to finalize later this year, with significant construction beginning in 2023.

New Home with ADU on Multnomah

The unique two-household development at 6975 NE Multnomah Street is nearing completion. The new structure replaces a detached garage that previously belonged to 1205 NE 70th Avenue before the developer divided the lot. Listed as a house with an attached Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU), it splits 1500 square feet into an east and west half. 

Both units share a front porch, with the main house accessed off a side door to the west. Entering the primary home leads through an “L” shaped kitchen into a living room. A half bathroom sits tight to the shared center wall at the back corner of the main level. Two bedrooms on the second story divide the floor, with the larger one taking up the front. The smaller back bedroom is next to a three-quarters shared bathroom and stacked laundry closet.

The ADU unit on the east side has the living room at the front and a compact kitchen at the back of the home. The half bathroom is positioned in a mirror image to the one on the other side of the dividing wall. On the ADU’s second floor, Two bedrooms take a position at the front and back of the level. A full bathroom and stacked laundry closet occupy the reaming space on the upper floor. The blueprints for the building show both ADU bedroom closets as having 3′ 2″ raised floors. This configuration removes the closets from the floor area calculation and safely places the project’s total habitable space below the Floor Area Ratio (FAR) maximum for this project.

Designers of this home took steps to make the home’s exterior visually interesting. It employs a skillion and lean-to roof with several window projections. The gabled porch roof pushes forward towards the sidewalk slightly, providing depth to the entryway. This design hides the building’s boxy footprint and makes the small two-family home seem larger. Expect to see this property listed for sale within the next few months.