The Bascom Village project just got some much needed funding and construction could begin as early as next summer.
The Bascom Village Complex, set to go up at the corner of County Farm Road and Park View Drive, has developed quite the opposition over the last few years. So while the invested parties are happy about the funding news, the affordable housing project’s neighbors aren’t exactly smiling.
St. Vincent de Paul got the news about a week ago that the Oregon Housing and Community Services Agency approved its $8 million funding request for the the 101-unit complex.
“We were very pleased because this is one of those things we want to be able to do is continue to increase the housing stock that we have in the community,” said Terry McDonald, St. Vincent de Paul Director.
The city agrees.
“Over 50 percent of renters in our community don’t have access to affordable housing, and that has a huge impact on our community and our individual households,” said Stephanie Jennings, City Development Grants Manager.
“This is one of the best growth areas for jobs in the area. And as we can see just over the last couple of years with the VA clinic going in and the jobs in the Gateway area. This is a growing area of the community where affordable housing will be a valuable valuable asset,” McDonald said.
But not everyone is on the same page. Nearby residents argue it would just further crowd a packed region.
“As we’re doing this interview, a bus comes up and takes up the entire road, so not even one car could drive. And you have children and they’re still saying we can accommodate 1,200 cars a day?” said project neighbor Dianna Graff.
Neighbors also say outside of the negative impact on their property values, the lack of sidewalks and street lamps, poses a strong safety issue. And so they’re continuing to fight, but others are hoping they’ll truly try to work things out.
“For each of these sites, it is a process and we just continue to work through those issues,” Jennings said.
And they’re working through some of those issues Wednesday night at a meeting downtown at the Atrium Building. The meeting is just for information. No decision will be made. The money approved only funds half of the project. It’s now up to HASCA to apply for tax credits for the other half.