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First Affordable Apartments Open On Portland's South Waterfront

OPB | Dec. 7, 2012 3:04 p.m. | Portland

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More than 200 families have started moving into the first affordable apartments in Portland’s high-rise South Waterfront district.

Artist's rendition of Gray's Landing, a new 209 unit affordable housing apartment complex in Portland's South Waterfront area.

Artist's rendition of Gray's Landing, a new 209 unit affordable housing apartment complex in Portland's South Waterfront area.

Kristian Foden-Vencil / OPB

Over the last decade, the old industrial site along the Willamette River has been transformed into a neighborhood of glistening towers.

The City’s North Macadam Urban Renewal Area helped spur its creation. But until now the goal of affordable housing hadn’t been realized.

The reasons — a mixture of the recession, and tax dollars being spent first on the aerial tram and streetcar.

Riad Sahli of the low-income housing developer REACH, says there’s big demand, “We started move-ins already. They started two weeks ago. We’re doing about two or three a day. And so at that rate, it’ll take a few months for the building to be physically full.”

About 20 percent of the apartments are reserved for low-income veterans who’ve been homeless during the last two years. The other apartments are for people earning up to 60 percent of the median family income.

Rents range from $480 to about $800 a month.

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