(Chuck Arnold & Meghan Gassner distributing PPE to Small businesses in Redmond)
Economic Development leaders in Central Oregon see Redmond now, and in the near future, blessed with strong business growth — with available commercial real estate and plans for affordable housing.
John Roberts, deputy city manager, says, in seeing forecasts for new employers and employees, “Our city has a long-standing history of planning ahead for decades. The roads, parks, water capacity and waste water collection and treatment construction projects has resulted from City Council leadership.”
Roberts’ summation encompasses Redmond’s 2018 Public Facilities Plan (PFP) and the 2020 Redmond Transportation Plan (TSP), part of the PFP.
He continues, “Transportation is the most challenging infrastructure component to plan for. The projects are expensive, particularly those that involve state highways. Funding is limited, impact on the public is significant; it is hard to predict the impact of outside factors. Traffic reductions due to a recession, pandemic or growth due to economic growth, all have a significant impact on revenue and scheduling. Technology changes also impact projects in negative or positive ways, but prediction is difficult.”
Included in the TSP are current projections such as the Airport Master Plan and the Trails Master Plan. Also included is the South Redmond Corridor Plan (SRCP). (See Rendering of the South Redmond Corridor Plan here.)
The South Highway 97 Urban Renewal District — that further identifies the SRCP — is being proposed to address issues of safety, mobility and economics in the southern part of the City. If approved next month, the South Highway 97 Urban Renewal District will focus on providing much needed infrastructure to improve safety along the corridor, as well as incentives to develop infrastructure for the South Redmond industrial lands south of the fairgrounds.
Chuck Arnold, Urban Renewal program manager, is a lynchpin in Redmond’s plans to provide affordable housing for current and future employees/residents. He says, “Perspective from staff is that we work incredibly hard to get there. I can’t speak citywide, but in the downtown core we are continually working with our housing development partners to ensure we have a variety of housing types. From market rate to workforce, we are aggressively seeking to provide housing for a diverse set of incomes and needs.”
Affordable housing includes:
Mid-town Place (set to open spring, 2021)
- Redmond Urban Renewal Agency provided grant assistance to HousingWorks.
- Targeting for families earning approximately ($56,000 for a family of four.) This project has recently broken ground with 47 units.
- Redmond works with its state and county partner agencies to realize Skyline Village, a project planned for NE Redmond. When completed, it will be the largest affordable housing project to date — including 485 units with a mix of apartments, condos and single-family designs. Fifty percent will meet the “affordable housing” criteria.
- Redmond residents will have their water, streets, waste water treatment, parks and airport needs met. If economic growth forecasts are realized, residents also will have new jobs available.