Rand Road project developer negotiations to begin
On November 22, City Council selected Community Development Partners as the preferred developer for the City’s 780 Rand Road affordable housing project. This decision will begin a six-month period for due diligence and development agreement negotiations. Once an agreement is in place, the developer will finalize design, engineering and permitting before beginning construction. Affordable housing could be available for occupancy as early as June 2025 with rents ranging from $423 – $1,173, depending on income and apartment size.
The decision followed a recommendation from a seven-member review team made up of City and Hood River County staff, a local developer, and representatives from the City’s consulting team.
The developer selection process began in July with a Request for Qualifications to affordable housing developers. Seven well-qualified firms responded and the City short-listed BRIDGE Housing Corporation (Bridge) and Community Development Partners (CDP) to respond to a more detailed Request for Proposal (RFP) in September. The RFP outlined City Council’s project goals which included not only development of affordable housing but also environmental sustainability, energy resiliency, community engagement, and park and open space. Both Bridge and CDP proposed developing over 120 units of housing for households earning between 30% and 60% of Area Median Income on the City’s parcel.
There was broad consensus that both Bridge and CDP are extremely well-qualified and either firm could meet the City’s goals for an affordable housing development. However, the selection committee recommended CDP to be the City’s preferred developer. Designation as the preferred developer for 780 Rand Road provides the assurances necessary for CDP to invest in further site due diligence and a more detailed final proposal. Site design, building program and costs are still preliminary and will be addressed in greater detail during contract negotiations and after more public engagement.
“The City is moving quickly, but deliberately, to address the extreme and persistent need for affordable housing in Hood River,” explains Senior Planner Kevin Liburdy who is the project manager for the 780 Rand Rd. project. “There are affordable housing grant applications due this spring. We want to be in the best position possible to obtain these funds by demonstrating a feasible and well-considered development. It is an ambitious target, but our team believes CDP can make it happen.”
The six-month exclusive negotiation period with CDP will include:
- Public outreach
- Additional design, engineering, and financial analysis
- Execution of a purchase option agreement between the City and CDP
- Submittal of affordable housing grant applications
The seven-acre 780 Rand Road property was purchased by the City in January 2020 for the purpose of developing affordable housing. Promoting housing availability has been a top City Council goal for many years. In the fall of 2020, the City contracted with Leland Consulting Group to prepare a development strategy for the site and a developer solicitation. CDP is partnering with the local housing authority for ongoing operation of the 780 Rand Road development.
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