From the Dec. 12 special affordable housing edition, “In need of a new deal.”
Portland’s efforts to build a net gain of affordable housing for its lowest income residents have failed more than the city bureau charged with creating that housing would like you to know.
In 1978, 5,183 units in Portland’s downtown core were affordable to people living at 0 to 30 percent of median family income (MFI), considered low-income. In 1984, the city’s Central City Plan mandated that at least that number would always be affordable downtown.
In an effort to get back to that number, the Portland City Council approved a No Net Loss Policy in 2001 calling for rehabilitating, preserving, and creating affordable housing in the central city through regulation and additional financial resources.
Since 1994, the non-profit Northwest Pilot Project, which serves the elderly homeless and low-income, has inventoried downtown affordable housing. The last inventory was published in 2007, and counted 3,330 affordable units in the downtown area, well below the 5,183 units the City has committed to retain. Continue reading