Residents weigh in on Woodstock block development

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PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Dozens of people who live in Southeast Portland’s Woodstock neighborhood weighed in on a proposed apartment development Thursday night. 

Mill Creek Residential plans to build a 5-story apartment complex taking up an entire city block where The Joinery is currently located in Portland's Woodstock neighborhood, April 11, 2019. (Mill Creek Residential)

Mill Creek Residential plans to build a 5-story apartment complex on a city block currently home to a craft furniture business called The Joinery. 

As The Portland Tribune reported, the block in question is bounded by Southeast Woodstock Boulevard to the north and Martins Street to the south, between 48th (across from Woodstock Laundry) and 49th Avenues (across from Woodstock Library).

The Joinery, which has been here on Woodstock Boulevard for 22 years, may soon be moving elsewhere, April 11, 2019 (Portland Tribune/Becky Luening)

Mill Creek Residential is a national real estate developer that established an office in Portland at the time of its founding in 2011, along with offices in other growing cities in Texas, California, and the northeast region of the U.S., as well as in the northwest. The company specializes in the type of development they are proposing for Woodstock: mixed-use apartment complexes, with commercial space on the ground floor and underground parking.

Woodstock residents got their first and only chance to talk with the developers Thursday night. Around 200 people showed up, most in the hopes of convincing Mill Creek Residential to scale back its proposal. 

Sage Jensen, chair of the Woodstock Neighborhood Association, asked developers to reconsider their plans. 

“You can build this by right but we are asking you to do a better job, to build this is a way that fits with the neighborhood,” said Jensen. 

About 200 residents of SE Portland's Woodstock neighborhood attended a community meeting to ask developers about their proposed apartment complex, April 11, 2019. (KOIN) 

Others who spoke expressed concerns that the development will open doors to speeding traffic and fuel Portland’s housing crisis. 

Meanwhile, Mill Creek Residential said it wants to work with the community by offering bus passes and encouraging alternative transportation to those who move into the apartment complex. 

The proposed complex would also include an underground parking garage. 

“Part of our ability to provide parking is the fact that it is a full block because you need room to get that ramp down under the building,” said Cassidey Bolger with Mill Creek Residential. 

The proposal is still in its early stages. Community members can send their comments to the Woodstock Neighborhood Association, which plans to continue to work with developers. 

The Portland Tribune contributed to this story.

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