Sunday, July 20, 2008

BNA July minutes about the Trammell Crow complex

Here are the minutes from the July 16th meeting with Trammell Crow about the apartment complex. Another meeting is tentatively set for August 6th. If you have comments or questions - post them below where it says "comments"

Meeting notes for July 16, 2008

The Columbia Room at the Courtyard at the North Harbor Marriott

23 BNA members 8 of which are board members were present

This was a special meeting with Trammell Crow Residential to discuss their plans to build a 250+ unit apartment complex on the west end of Bridgeton Road. TCR was represented by Sam Rodriguez and Thomas DiChiara. They brought Mike Coleman to explain the results of the traffic study and Paul Jeffreys of Sera Architects to show his early rendering of designs for the site. Airanne Sperry, the North District Liaison for the Portland Planning Bureau also attended.

Sam Rodriguez started the meeting by saying that they still have not been able to meet with PDOT (Portland Department of Transportation). They hope to have a meeting with them next week to discuss their plans for a private street that has a permeable material for the connector to Bridgeton Road for emergency vehicles and a bike trail along the Bridgeton Slough. They will also learn what will be required for the access off of Marine Drive.

Mike Coleman explained that his review of the traffic study results would indicate that they will need to put in a left turn lane for east bound traffic wanting to enter the complex. They plan to have three lanes on the entrance road and block parking at the entrance which should allow vehicles making right turns the ability to exit without having to wait for cars making left turns onto Marine Drive. He worried about their being able to see west bound traffic. This study considered only the current traffic which is now that of an arterial road and not a collector road (which is what it is listed as). There is no consideration for traffic that may come from the 141 apartment complex going in on Anchor Way. Walter did say that Mr. Chiu has already agreed to pay for a stop light at the intersection of Anchor Way and Marine Drive when it is needed. We need to find out what is required to show that it is needed.

TCR is now saying that they plan to have 254 units that will be Studios (500 sq ft), one bedroom and two bedrooms (1000 sq ft) which they will charge from $1,000 to $1,400 per month. The larger buildings on the river side would be white with wood trim on long, sleek units with recessed and pop out balconies. The balcony rails would be of glass. The smaller, walk-up buildings would have a different design. They don’t think it would be feasible to make the buildings step down to the lower construction on either end because of the city requirement for fire escapes on the ends of the buildings. They would have to have many stairwells.

They have requirements from BES (Bureau of Environmental Services) to stay a certain distance from the slough. They will be looking into what plants are allowed to be planted on their land.

TCR keeps saying that the economics of the project require them to have 254 units. They are still saying that they need to add a story to the large buildings on the river going above the current zone restrictions or having three more small buildings which would cause the loss of the private road giving a public street and potential through road to Bridgeton Road. They have not explained what that economics is. They also said that they can build one square foot for every square foot of land.

TCR and Sera said that they will not be allowed to change their construction materials after it is reviewed and approved by the city design review. Several people suggested that they would like to see some angles in the design and it was suggested that they not use white because of the discoloration caused by jet fuel.

There were many questions about parking spaces for these apartments. We were reminded that the code does not require parking spaces and it was mentioned that people would probably not rent if they did not have parking provided. When the street parking within the complex is included, the complex would have 1.2 parking spaces for each unit. TCR reminded us that most complexes are not 100% full.

Someone said that Harbour Court has 1.1 parking spaces and many of the spaces are empty. However, Harbour Court charges extra for the parking causing many to choose to park on the street which might explain the parking issues on Harbour Way.

A meeting will be scheduled to continue this discussion the most likely date is August 6 at the Marriott. We hope to see more people at the meeting to get more people aware of the issues.

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