Notes from Eliot Neighborhood Association Land Use and Transportation Committee meeting January 26, 2015.
LUTC members present:
Mike Warwick (chair)
Angela Kremer (chair of the Eliot Neighborhood Association board)
Nan Stark, City of Portland;
Don Sowieja, principal, Myhre Goup architects
Meeting called to order at 6.30 pm
Concept multifamily development at 2405 N Vancouver Ave
(South of Russell St; the 2 lots directly south of Columbia Gorge Model Railroad Club)
Presentation by Don Sowieja, Myhre Goup architects
Current zoned is RH; current structures on the lots include single family home
Developer’s goal is to comply with Community Design Standards in lieu of Portland Design Commission review
Apartment building: 5 stories over partial basement
54 rental units: mix of studio, 1BR and 2BR; all units have balcony
Market rate rental; management company not yet selected
15 parking stalls plus bike parking to offset need for more parking (otherwise 18 spaces would be required by City)
Hope to start construction late summer but not decided
Comments from committee:
- Parking will be really bad. Response from architect: expects that some resident parking will be pushed out on to neighboring streets
- Would you consider creating fewer larger units; location near park might be attractive to families
- Fiberglass windows are more attractive and durable than vinyl
- In comp plan zone is expected to change to mixed use, allowing retail; retail on 1st floor (eg coffee shop) would be attractive to neighborhood and could be more profitable; design for future retail use when zone changes to mixed
Architect will take the above requests for consideration and subsequent response: additional parking, changing mix of units (in favor of larger units), design to include retail, consider fiberglass windows
Election of officers
- Mike Warwick stepping down as chair of LUTC. Proposes committee should appoint leads for each major focus area: planning, land use, board relations, transportation. Chair and vice chair
- Nominations. Mike W nominates Allan Rudwick as chair. No other nominations. Proposal carries with no dissenting votes
- Mike W wants to focus on comprehensive plan. Allan proposes Mike Warwick as vice chair. Proposal carries with no dissenting votes.
Nan Stark update and questions re City’s Comprehensive Plan Update
Planning & Sustainability Commission work sessions start Jan 27. Sessions will digest testimony (~2800 items) and staff input that has been provided. No new testimony at sessions, but written comments will be accepted until March 13.
City’s growth strategy is that ~80% of growth should be accommodated in corridors and centers. Goal for neighborhood center (eg Williams/Fremont) is 3500 households within half a mile
Comments so far are running in favor of Eliot Neighborhood Association zoning proposal at ration of 3-4 to 1. The proposal is discussed as a preservation tool.
Requested changes include: Portland Pension opt out of R2.5 rezoning, along with south side of San Rafael east of Rodney; Mixed use zoning expands from MLK to include parking lot west of car dealership facility on San Rafael/MLK; south side of Fremont, the block directly east of Williams, opt out of R2.5 rezoning.
Discussion (Allan R) should we have submitted request to change Williams south of Russell to mixed use (CM) from R1. Concerns about requesting such as change: it is difficult to make argument that if mixed use should be low height; potential for six-story buildings in CM zones.
Proposal: Allan to write letter with comments re Comprehensive Plan by March deadline, making the following points:
- Address CM zoning on east side of Williams south of Russell; request change to CM1 (lowest-height option)
- Recommend changing Emmanuel property Hill Block to CM2
- Block of Fremont east of Williams, south side of street, to be zoned R2.5 as described in current Eliot Neighborhood proposal.
Discussion of goals and representation on Broadway alliance, a group that has been forming of organizations focused on specific local issues, e.g. proposed widening of I5 and need for an EIS.
Discussion initiated by Angela Kremer (chair of the Eliot Neighborhood Association board), based on community conversations and board requests.
- Request to move LUTC meeting location and time to occur earlier in month than ENA board meeting. Allan to research and decide.
- The board is considering ways to diversify and has formed a committee to address this work of including the whole community.
Recognition of Mike Warwick’s contributions
Alise Munsen proposes recognizing Mike Warwick’s contributions over many years, and the value of those efforts in preserving and protecting Eliot. Motion passes with no dissenters.
Meeting adjourned 8.45pm