Earlier this year the national retailer Trader Joe’s announced it was pulling out of a development deal in NE Portland on a site that has stood empty for many years. Since that time, we’ve talked to government and community leaders about what the community, including the Portland African American Leadership Forum, wanted to see on that site. One of the criticisms the Trader Joe’s proposal raised was that the development lacked an affordable housing component.
Now, a new deal to bring the less well known Natural Grocers to the site as the anchor tenant seems to be well-received, says Patrick Quinton, head of the Portland Development Commission. The deal does not include any affordable housing, but the city of Portland has committed $20 million for affordable housing in the area.