780 Rand Road Affordable Housing Development
Project Developer Negotiations Are Underway
On November 22, 2021, City Council selected Community Development Partners (CDP) as the preferred developer for the City’s 780 Rand Road affordable housing project. CDP is partnering with the Columbia Cascade Housing Corporation, the development arm of the Mid-Columbia Housing Authority.
The City and CDP are in a six-month period of negotiations and due diligence while also seeking funding. After securing funding and putting together a development agreement, CDP will finalize design, engineering and permitting before beginning construction.
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 and 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.
- Execution of a purchase option agreement between the City and CDP
- Additional design, engineering, and financial analysis
- Submittal of affordable housing grant applications
- Community engagement
In January of 2020 the City purchased a seven-acre parcel at 780 Rand Road in Hood River for the purpose of developing affordable housing.
In the autumn of 2020 the City contracted with Leland Consulting Group, DDV Consulting and Urbsworks to prepare a development strategy for the site and a developer solicitation. Goals were established by the city council, and the consultant team met with stakeholders before preparing four preliminary development alternatives.
In the spring of 2021 a StoryMap and a brief survey were used to obtain public feedback, and the preliminary development alternatives were refined for use in developer-solicitation documents.
City Council expects Community Development Partners and Columbia Cascade Housing Corp. will employ their creativity and development expertise with respect to site- and building design, and financing and deal structuring, to deliver housing on the site consistent with the City’s goals.
The City of Hood River purchased the property in January 2020 for $1.2M. The Oregon Business Development Department granted $410,000 for the purchase and the remainder was financed by the City. Construction Excise Tax is a repayment source, and other funding sources include local, state and other community partners.
At the time of purchase the City committed to development of at least 50 housing units for households earning at or below 120% of area median income. Since that the time the city council refined its primary goal and identified additional goals.
Hood River’s Housing Needs
Following adoption of a Housing Needs Analysis in 2015, the City developed a housing strategy and established goals of creating opportunities for a more inclusive and diverse housing inventory. Elements of the Housing Needs Analysis were updated in 2019. Key points about housing affordability include:
- Median home prices and median rents have seen steady increases. Both exceed Oregon statewide levels.
- Hood River will have an ongoing need for housing affordable to lower- and moderate-income households including those making $75,000 or less annually.
- Homeownership rates in Hood River declined recently from 51% to 46%; 54% of Hood River households are renters.
- About 48% of renters are cost burdened, meaning they pay more than 30% of their gross income for housing and may have difficult affording necessities such as food, clothing, transportation and medical care.
- 77% of people who work in Hood River live elsewhere and commute.
The aerial photograph below depicts Hood River’s city limits (dashed blue line) and Urban Growth Boundary (dashed red line). The 780 Rand Road site is highlighted in yellow. It is in close proximity to many businesses along Cascade Avenue (US Route 30, the Historic Columbia River Highway), as well as the site of a future school.
Preparation of preliminary development alternatives included evaluation of zoning, utilities, topography and natural features on the site and in the surrounding area, as well as the City’s capital facilities plans for public infrastructure. The Village at Rand Hill neighborhood is located immediately east of the site, and the Maley Subdivision is located to the southwest. There are undeveloped properties to the west and south, and partially developed properties to the north. Public utilities including water, sanitary sewer and stormwater facilities are available to serve the site, but new roads and other infrastructure will need to be constructed. Wetlands and steep slopes will affect where housing and other improvements can be constructed on the site.
The preliminary development alternatives incorporate other improvements and amenities including public trails, park space and open space.
The overall process for development of the site is expected to occur like this:
Download this document to review two broad housing market economic topics affecting Hood River.
Factors affecting housing demand:
- What factors influence Hood River’s growth and housing market? Will they change over time?
- What might Hood River look like in the future if current development patterns continue?
Effects of housing production:
- How can Hood River increase housing supply to positively impact housing
- What impact does allowing increased development capacity have on the housing market?
- What’s the relationship between SDC’s and housing prices?
For questions about the 780 Rand Road Housing Development Strategy, please contact Senior Planner Kevin Liburdy.