Category: New Residence

Six Townhomes on NE 91st

On April 26th, Provision Investments purchased the undeveloped lot at 716 NE 91st Avenue and filed paperwork to increase the lot coverage from 50 to 55.6 percent. This request will facilitate the construction of six new two-story townhomes on this site. This sloped lot remained after the previous owner developed two duplexes on the southern portion of the property. Those four homes fronted on NE Irving Street completed construction in 2019.

This property is zoned Residential Multi-Dwelling 1 (RM1), allowing a 1:1 Floor Area Ratio (FAR). It allows a maximum building coverage of 50% to incentives developments that gradually blend the characteristics of adjacent residential homes and denser multi-family housing. The total interior usable space of all the homes built here would need to total 4,900 square feet or less unless granted bonus FAR for affordability. This application represents an early proposal for development and will likely change based on the results of their adjustment to lot coverage restrictions.

Image from Portland Maps

The recent application revealed that Provision intends to create six new “townhome style residential condos” on the 50 by 100 foot lot. This language indicates the townhomes reside on a single property and will require a Home Owners Association (HOA) to manage the shared space. However, newer rules created by the Residential Infill Project could allow each home to have its own lot and obtain street access from a pathway easement. Development of this project could take six months to a year. Anticipate construction occurring in 2024.

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Three Home Infill on NE 73rd

On April 28th, NW Development Inc purchased the 1,500-square-foot single-family residence at 26 NE 73rd Avenue, and the new owner plans to construct three additional homes behind the existing 1940’s era house. Each new detached residence will stand two stories tall and contain just under 950 square feet of living space. Demolition crews will remove the freestanding single-car garage to the south of the home, allowing access to the back structures.

Owner of NW Development, Brett Barton, explained why this property was an ideal location to bring affordable middle housing to the neighborhood. “The house is in pretty good shape. It needs some updating but is overall a solid house. The prior owners took great care of it, the hardwoods are in phenomenal shape, and it hasn’t been chopped up a whole bunch of times.” The home’s placement at the front of the lot also added to this project’s viability, leaving over half the property open to development. The first new home will sit ten feet behind the original structure Facing south, and the other two houses will sit side by side at the back of the lot facing west.

Image from Portland Maps

Each new building will offer a similar floor plan with a great room, kitchen, and half-bath on the main floor. Upstairs, two bedrooms share a full bathroom and a side-by-side laundry. Each freestanding property will have its own lot without a Home Owners Association (HOA) fee, as many other similar developments previously required. “[They’ll be] sold as fee-simple ownership. There will not be condos or HOA or anything like that, and they’ll be on their own tax lots,” said Barton. He explained that Portland’s Residential Infill Project and House Bill 2001 paved the way for a more reasonable approach to this type of infill development. Before those changes, developers had to create an HOA system to manage shared access to units not adjacent to a city street. That adds monthly costs and can turn away buyers during the financing process. The new Middle Housing Land Division rules allow certain middle housing types to exist on an individual lot with separate ownership, but the lots do not require direct street access. Instead, an easement for utilities and a walkway ensure residents have the access they need to their property, even when it is behind several others.

Brett Barton explained that the driveway would remain during construction to provide equipment access to the site. However, after crews complete construction, they will rebuild the pathway to support pedestrian access to the other homes, and the driveway will not accommodate vehicle storage. “The City of Portland changed their attitude towards parking as we’ve had this housing crunch. The parking requirements have actually gone the opposite way. They’re not allowing garages on skinnier lots anymore,” said Barton. He feels that losing onsite parking and the utility of a garage can detract from a home’s functionality. Still, he accepts the tradeoff when creating homes accessible to first-time buyers. Each new home will sell below the affordable housing cap currently set at $455,000 or less. Although that Portland set cap could seem unaffordable, the program helps keep prices from spiking during high demand and can be the only way certain buyers are not priced out of good neighborhoods.

Barton said permit applications are taking over six months for approval. However, he may demolish the garage and begin upgrade work on the existing home before then. The 1948-built house will receive new paint, heating and cooling system upgrades, and full kitchen and bath modernization. Expect to see crews start that work in the coming months and construction of the new homes towards the end of 2023.

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Common-wall Pair on NE Everett

Work is underway on two common-wall homes at NE 90th Avenue and Everett Street, each with an attached Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU). The residences feature unique floor plans with a split-level layout over three floors. A single-car garage and driveway in front of each house offer some onsite parking for the residents.

Unlike many common-wall developments, 8955 NE Everett Street and 8957 NE Everett Street do not share a similar floor plan, although they have roughly the same features. The garage and entryway are at grade level, and the owner’s suites sit above. Those large bedrooms feature tray ceilings, double vanity ensuite bathrooms, and walk-in closets. A short flight of stairs leads up from the entryway to the open-floor-plan main level that stands six feet above the ground floor in the back half of the building. Stairs leading up to the top floor have a mid-rise platform allowing access to the owner’s suite. Two bedrooms and a full bathroom occupy the uppermost level of both homes. One unit has a full laundry room, while the other offers a side-by-side laundry closet.

Side view of foundation showing entrance retaining wall for 8957 NE Everett Streets ADU

Below both houses are daylight basement ADUs, built only two and a half feet below grade. These one-bedroom units have a stacked laundry closet, a full bathroom, and a single-wall kitchen. With most of the ADU unit’s walls above ground, they support many full-sized windows that should offer natural light. Discrete ADU side entrances should give those tenets privacy and autonomy from the residents above. The architect’s placement of large back decks six and a half feet above the backyard, and staggered from north to south, also adds to the separation of living space.

The architect on this project, Thogerson Designs, has drawn from mid-20th century inspirations while using modern shifting of design elements to break up the building’s massing. The common-wall structure will share a cohesive appearance but still clearly define each residence. The number of stairs residents must traverse in a day is perhaps the only detractor from the chosen layout. Otherwise, it offers a creative way to blend housing density into a traditionally single-family area of Montavilla.

View into the front of the homes looking north

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SE 83rd 30 Unit Apartment Complex

McGuirl Designs & Architecture recently announced plans to create a 30-unit apartment complex at 33 SE 83rd Avenue. The two-building development will replace an existing single-family residence and an adjacent empty lot with three floors of housing. Both buildings will support nine two-bedroom and six one-bedroom units evenly dispersed on each level. Residents will access apartments on the upper floors through exterior stairwells that lead to a central walkway between the structures.

Two-story home to be demolished if development proceeds

The layout and scope of this 19,284-square-foot project could change significantly before work begins. In 2018, the previous owners of this property proposed an eight-unit apartment building. During that early development work, demolition crews removed a detached storage structure from the now vacant lot. That project did not succeed, and in the summer of 2020, Montavilla Green LLC bought the home with the undeveloped parcel. The new owners have not yet submitted demolition permits for the 1946-era home or building permits for the two new multi-family buildings. However, the architect has made the required notice to the neighborhood association, indicating there is momentum behind this proposal.

Portland Maps image with MV News illustration

This property is next to and behind commercial properties in a Commercial Mixed Use 2 zone that promotes this type of development. The site is close to the intersection of 82nd Avenue and Burnside Street, making it an ideal location for public transit users. It will also provide protected bike parking for residents who want to use that mode of transportation. This development will contain inclusionary housing units as required in projects with more than 19 units. Look for the developer to submit building permits later this year, with work likely beginning in 2024 or later.

Empty lot where detached garage once stood

Disclosure: The author of this article serves on the board of the Montavilla Neighborhood Association.

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The Growing Urban Core on E Burnside

A cluster of four-story apartment buildings is transforming E Burnside Street west of SE 60th Avenue. In a former 7-Eleven’s footprint, crews recently completed work on the second building at the Burnie apartment complex. One street over, Tabor Flats PDX has a 78-unit apartment building under construction. This month, permit applications revealed another 78-unit building will soon sit between the other two projects, replacing The Jag Shop at 5710 E Burnside Street. This rapid redevelopment indicates what is economically viable in Commercial Mixed Use 2 (CM2) zoning just 20 blocks from Montavilla.

Rendering of 5734 E Burnside Street. Image courtesy FoslerArchitecture

In January 2023, the specialty automotive repair shop announced its closure after nearly 28 years. Now Fosler Architecture is working with the new property owners to design the four-story multi-family building replacing The Jag Shop. The proposed project will include a mix of studio, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom units. Each residence will have a stacked laundry facility and utilizes an efficient floor plan. When completed, the building will have a new address of 5734 E Burnside Street.

The Tabor Flats PDX development, across SE 57th Avenue from The Jag Shop, is owned by the same entity behind the Burnie. The group’s newest apartment building broke ground at 8 SE 56th Avenue soon after the other development wrapped up just 700 feet away. Studio 3 Architecture designed both projects for The Mark R Madden Revocable Living Trust. Consequentially, Studio 3 Architecture has set the aesthetic for buildings in this area of E Burnside Street and will make a lasting mark on the street.

The Jag Shop at 5710 E Burnside Street

These mass housing projects are possible because of the CM2 zoning on this section of E Burnside Street. It incentives medium-scale commercial mixed-use development in population centers and corridors, particularly in areas well served by frequent public transit. City planners expect buildings in this zone to be up to four stories tall, but until recently, very few developers in this area have built to that scale. If these 70-plus unit apartment buildings continue to meet the housing gap for a considerable percentage of the population, builders will continue their work towards the east. CM2 zoning exists across many sections of Montavilla, including 82nd Avenue and E Burnside Street. Only two projects in Montavilla have proposed housing density equal to what is happening in the adjacent neighborhoods. It is only a matter of time before more properties in Montavilla attract development projects that deliver over 60 apartments in a single structure.

Zoning map centered on 5710 E Burnside from Portland Maps

Retraction: A previous version of this article stated that the former owner of The Jag Shop was involved in the project. He is not involved in the apartment development. Montavilla News regrets this error.

One Home Becomes Ten on NE 92nd

Instrinsic Homes LLC bought the expansive 100-foot by 100-foot property at 811 NE 92nd Avenue a year ago. The new owners split the land into three parcels, selling the corner house to new residents and selling the undeveloped lots to Dez Development. Soon nine townhomes will surround the existing 1925-era home, creating a total of ten residences out of land previously used for just one single-family-dwelling.

Splitting the lot and reselling the separate parcels netted Instrinsic Homes around $250,000 and created two new development opportunities. The 4,455-square-foot property accessed from NE Oregon Street will contain six residences. The smaller 2,103 square-foot undeveloped lot fronted on NE 92nd Avenue will support three townhouses. Each of those Townhouse units split living space across two floors. The developer has not proposed onsite parking for these projects.

This site redevelopment will preserve the nearly 100-year-old home while substantially increasing available housing. Although this will be one of the most efficient redevelopments in Montavilla, it is two units less than the eleven-townhouse development planned at 2321 SE 89th Avenue or the Twelve Townhouses nearly completed on SE 86th Avenue. The SE 89th project will also preserve the original home, but the SE 86th development razed the existing structures. Expect construction to start on NE 92nd Avenue in the next six to eighteen months, and anticipate many new neighbors within this area by 2024.

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Single Skinny Home on NE 74th

Etruscan Ventures recently purchased the 25-foot-wide undeveloped lot next to 118 NE 74th Avenue. The development group plans to build a 1,330-square-foot two-story single-family dwelling on the property. Crews will construct the new 15-foot-wind home to the south of a 1925-era house that once used the property as a garden. That recently remodeled original building is for sale and includes a basement suitable for an ADU or extra living space.

This infill housing development should squeeze another home between the established residences without the need to demolish an existing home. Look for construction to start in the next six to eighteen months, and interested buyers can schedule a tour of the nearly 100-year-old home by contacting Smira Group by phone at 503-935-2560 or email at

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Two Slim Houses Under Construction on NE 75th

In September of 2022, the new owners of 319 NE 75th Avenue demolished the 122-year-old home. Now, crews are building a pair of single-family residences. Cement masons will soon pour the concrete foundation walls into the forms already in place at the worksite. Building permits 22-142935 and 22-142840 each call for a two-story house with an attached single-car garage. The homes will occupy two 25-foot-wide parcels recently created by a lot division.

Image from Portland Maps

The architect designed the new residences at 323 NE 75th Avenue and 321 NE 75th Avenue as mirror duplicates, with their entrances closest to one another. Each building is free-standing and fifteen feet wide at the front. The homes will join several other skinny houses built on this block. Look for construction to continue through summer and real estate listing for both properties appearing towards the end of 2023.

319 NE 75th Avenue prio to September 2022 demolition
319 NE 75th Avenue in October 2022 after demolition
321 NE 75th Avenue under construction March 2023

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Three Townhouses Coming to SE 89th and Market

The new owners of 8905 SE Market Street intend to attach three new townhomes to the existing single-family residence at this corner lot. Sunset Bridge Inc. bought the 1952-era home last October and plans to create additional housing on the property after demolishing the detached garage. Each proposed two-story unit will offer around 1,100 square feet of living space.

The four residences will all share the same lot, with the new homes likely fronted on SE 89th Avenue in an area of the property currently covered in tall hedges. The new structures will not contain garages. However, the curb cut and parking pad used for the old garage may remain. The existing 1,466-square-foot home has three bedrooms and two bathrooms. The three new townhouses will likely contain two bedrooms.

Building permits in Portland take several months to approve, and those delays could push this project’s start date into the latter half of this year or 2024. Expect constriction to begin sometime after demolition crews deconstruct the single-car garage. When complete, this project will accommodate more homes while preserving the existing housing.

8905 SE Market Street on Portland Maps

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Portland Considering VOA Property for Outdoor Shelter

Update: The VOA property will not become a shelter site

City of Portland staff are in talks with the Volunteers of America (VOA) Oregon regarding the property at 8815 NE Glisan Street. As reported by the Oregonian/OregonLive on February 18th, multiple sources say this site could become an alternative outdoor shelter for up to 150 people experiencing houselessness. VOA Oregon CEO Kay Toran confirmed on February 20th that the City is seeking short-term use of the vacant NE Glisan Street property through a posted message on the organization’s website.

VOA Oregon purchased the large property on NE Glisan Street from Central Bible Church in May of 2021. In an interview published in the Montavilla News last October, Kay Toran outlined a multi-year plan to transform the 5.8-acre site into a headquarters and treatment center for the organization. Those plans continue to develop and will lead to the eventual demolition of existing structures on the property. Groundbreaking on new buildings is several years away, and at the time of the interview, Toran did not know what temporary uses that site would support.

Although the VOA Oregon message does not specifically reference the City’s proposed short-term use for the Glisan Street land, the statement does reference an “opportunity to assist them with the homeless crisis here in Portland.” The Portland Mayor’s office is currently evaluating several sites that could handle 150 people, possibly increasing to 250 people at a later expansion. In two community engagement sessions held by the Mayor’s Office in late 2022, staff outlined their goal for six professionally managed camping sites with an initial capacity for 100 tents and support for 150 residents. City Council would have the ability to approve an additional 100 people at a site sometime after the first phase completes. These managed outdoor shelters aim to provide better access to physical, mental, and behavioral health services for those living outdoors. Clustering large numbers of people together would allow support staff to better assist people into more permeant housing and access to other resources.

VOA Oregon CEO message from February 20th, 2023

The residents would receive two meals and a hefty snack in the proposed plan. People would need to be invited to live at the site and must provide legal names and dates of birth so support staff can help them access services. Each location would have one entrance and exit where people would need to surrender any weapons. All shelter sites would have 24-hour on-site management to assist residents and enforce a 1,000-foot no-camping perimeter around the property. A slide deck from the second meeting outlines additional camp amenities and restrictions for residents.

The final selection of the large outdoor shelter sites is ongoing. The Mayor’s office has yet to engage in conversation with Montavilla’s neighborhood or business associations regarding this site. Although, if the VOA organ site is selected, the City staff have committed to working with those groups and entering into a Good Neighbor Agreement for site operations. As this process moves forward, residents and business owners in the area should expect to receive more details about what will happen to the NE Glisan Street site.

Update: VOA Oregon CEO Kay Toran updated the organization’s posted message on February 22nd, 2023. Toran clarifies that discussions with the City are preliminary, and VOA Oregon has not signed any agreement. She assures people that they will consider all perspectives while evaluating the proposal. “Before formalizing any lease agreement, we need to conduct a thorough review of the proposed operational plans and assess their potential impact on residents, neighbors, and the community at large,” the statement says. Toran also notes that the organization’s long-term plans for the property are unchanged, regardless of any potential short-term use by the City of Portland.

VOA Oregon CEO message from February 22th, 2023
Mayor’s Office Community Stakeholder Meeting #1
Mayor’s Office Community Stakeholder Meeting #2

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