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Housing policy -- Oregon -- Portland, Neighborhood development, Urban community development -- Oregon -- Portland, Earthquake resistant design


Given the prevalence of vacant commercial office space and the need for creative solutions from local developers and property owners, this report considers the feasibility of office-to-housing retrofits and comparable development options for increasing housing supply in the Lloyd District of Portland, Oregon. The purpose of this report is to analyze existing office buildings in Lloyd with a focus on financial feasibility, development opportunities and policy constraints for office to residential conversions. The opportunity to limit emissions by reusing existing structures and increasing energy efficiency, as well as the opportunity to increase seismic resilience was compared to other types of housing development in Lloyd to best identify ways to increase the number and type of housing units in the neighborhood. The team developed an evaluation matrix for types of development including conversions with existing incentives, conversions with proposed policy incentives, demolition and housing development, housing development on a vacant lot, and no change to current use, with financial modeling utilizing pro formas to compare housing development opportunities in Lloyd.

The project team ultimately concluded that office to residential conversion is unlikely to produce many affordable units, nor is it the most efficient way to produce housing in Lloyd. To meet housing, livability, and climate goals of the neighborhood, the team concluded that partnering with landowners to utilize parking lots, retiring the Lloyd District Design Overlay, implementing a land value tax, and further studying seismic standards for office buildings is a better approach for reaching the City of Portland and the Lloyd EcoDistrict’s housing production goals. As Lloyd changes over the next decade, this report is intended to provide an instructive menu of options for best achieving the housing, livability, and climate goals of the neighborhood.


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