Posts Tagged ‘Displacement’

February 8, 2017 · by pcriadmin · Featured, Pathway 1000, PCRI

Twenty-two low-income families displaced from North and Northeast Portland will be able to purchase a home in their former neighborhood, thanks in part to a $100,000 grant from Wells Fargo Housing Foundation to Portland Community Reinvestment Initiatives (PCRI).

PCRI Executive Director Maxine Fitzpatrick (2nd from left) accepts a grant from local Wells Fargo executives, left to right: Andrew Tweedie, Community Affairs officer; Tracy Curtis, Regional President; and Cobi Lewis, Community Development officer. PCRI will use the $100,000 grant to build 22 affordable homes for sale to low-income buyers displaced from N/inner NE Portland

PCRI Executive Director Maxine Fitzpatrick (2nd from left) accepts a grant from local Wells Fargo executives, left to right: Andrew Tweedie, Community Affairs officer; Tracy Curtis, Regional President; and Cobi Lewis, Community Development officer. PCRI will use the $100,000 grant to build 22 affordable homes for sale to low-income buyers displaced from N/inner NE Portland

PCRI will use the grant to help build 22 new homes in North and inner Northeast Portland for purchase by the families. Construction on the homes is expected to start later this year, with all 22 homes completed and sold to qualifying families by the end of 2018. PCRI is estimating the total construction budget will be close to $6 million.

“Helping a family become a homeowner is one of the most effective ways to help them overcome displacement from their historic neighborhoods,” said PCRI Executive Director Maxine Fitzpatrick. “This grant is an important tool to make homes available and affordable for families who want to return and stay in the neighborhoods they once called home.”

The Wells Fargo grant will make homeownership more affordable by helping offset PCRI’s development costs for new homes built on land it owns. The completed homes will be prioritized for sale to households who have been involuntarily displaced or are at risk of displacement from North and inner Northeast Portland.

Families purchasing the homes will receive support from PCRI’s HUD-certified homeownership education and financial education programs.

The 22 homes are part of a larger PCRI initiative: Pathway 1000. The initiative aims to develop 1,000 new homes during the next 10 years, prioritized for residents involuntarily displaced or at risk of displacement from North and inner Northeast Portland.

“This grant is part of our commitment to the community to support the creation of more affordable housing, which is so desperately needed in Portland,” said Wells Fargo Oregon Regional President Tracy Curtis of Portland. “We work in tandem with PCRI and other community-based nonprofits to ensure stability and opportunity for local families.”

One of 56 Grants Nationally 

The $100,000 grant to PCRI was one of 56 neighborhood revitalization grants totaling $6 million that Wells Fargo Housing Foundation gave to nonprofits in 20 states and the District of Columbia through its Priority Markets Program. Since 2009 the program has provided grants totaling more than $42 million to nonprofits in 125 communities.

Grant recipients were selected from requests submitted by local Wells Fargo employees and nonprofits Wells Fargo identified as being in need of extra help with large-scale neighborhood revitalization projects. A recipient must be a nonprofit with a successful history of building or renovating housing for low-to moderate-income homebuyers.

 

About Wells Fargo Housing Foundation 

The Priority Markets Initiatives are administered through the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation. The foundation has stewarded more than $82 million and 4.5 million team member volunteer hours in support of creating affordable housing and community revitalization programs. The foundation has mobilized more than 175,000 volunteers to build or refurbish 3,600 homes in low-to-moderate income communities. More information: www.wellsfargo.com.

 

January 3, 2017 · by pcriadmin · Featured, PCRI
Sabin Fire PFB

Photo credit: Portland Fire Bureau

In November 2016, four families were displaced from their homes after a fire destroyed four of six townhomes at NE 27th Avenue and Killingsworth in Portland. Upon learning of the news, PCRI reached out to affordable housing provider Sabin CDC, who owns the property that was impacted by the fire, offering to assist in finding homes for the displaced families. Happily, two of the families recently moved into nearby PCRI rental homes with help from community partner Self Enhancement, Inc., ensuring the families remain in affordable homes and are able to stay in a familiar neighborhood.

Fortunately, all four families escaped the fire safely and found temporary shelter with the Red Cross while seeking permanent homes. The families not moving into PCRI homes have already found new housing or are working with partners to move into other homes. Sabin CDC is in the process of rebuilding the fire-damaged units so they can be once again made available as permanent housing for low-income families.

IMG_6959In addition to the new residents who were previously displaced due to fire, PCRI welcomed 38 new residents into its homes during the year, ensuring each family had safe, stable and affordable homes. And we’re proud to have opened the doors on 6 new rental homes (including the one pictured at right) in Northeast Portland. Stay tuned for additional news: more new homes are on the way in 2017 for renters and first-time home buyers.

September 28, 2015 · by pcriadmin · Featured, Pathway 1000, PCRI

Through its Community Planning and Development Grant Program, Metro Council recently awarded 16 grants totaling over $4.7 million, including $250,000 for the N/NE Community Development Project, part of the PCRI-led Pathway 1000 Initiative. The grant for N/NE Community Development Project will aid in planning, identification of underdeveloped properties and other strategies to mitigate, prevent and reverse residential and small business displacement in North and Northeast Portland.

PCRI staff and PSU Architecture students collaborate on a housing planning project

PCRI staff and PSU Architecture students collaborate on a housing planning project

For the grant-funded project, Portland Community Reinvestment Initiatives (PCRI) will lead a partnership including the Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, Portland Housing Bureau, Portland State University’s Center for Public Interest Design and PSU Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning. Awards were announced at a Council meeting held at Harrison Park School in East Portland on September 24.

“Most importantly, and for the first time since this grant program was established, projects were selected using new criteria that addressed equity considerations,” said Metro Councilor Sam Chase in his email newsletter. “To me, ensuring we grow in a way that enhances the quality of life for everyone is critically important.”

The N/NE Community Development project is intended to help reverse negative impacts of past policies and public investment. The project will produce strategic and implementation plans for how to develop at least 1,000 new, affordable homes and commercial space in close-in North and Northeast Portland during the next ten years. This ambitious goal was framed by the Pathway 1000 Initiative envisioned by PCRI. The project is intended to mitigate, prevent and reverse the residential and minority-owned small business displacement that has occurred in North and Northeast Portland during the last 10 years, the impacts of which have been borne most heavily by the African-American community, which is the focus of the initiative.

“This is great news!” said PCRI Executive Director Maxine Fitzpatrick. “It provides PCRI and the City of Portland with valuable resources to strategically plan for at least 1,000 new affordable homes, reversing decades of involuntary displacement in North and Northeast Portland and ensuring these new homes are thoughtfully integrated into existing neighborhoods.”

With intentional community involvement, the project aims to develop a deep understanding of the housing needs and preferences of previously-displaced North and Northeast Portland residents as well as those at risk of being displaced. The grant will also help define criteria by which potential development sites are evaluated and proposed for development. In turn, this understanding can influence public investment strategy as well as the types of developments undertaken by PCRI and other housing providers.

Similarly, the grant funding will help design commercial opportunities, contracting, small business and workforce-related strategies that engage the target population of African-American and other low income residents who have been historically and consistently underrepresented in economic opportunities such as the development proposed in the Pathway 1000 Initiative.

Metro established the Community Planning and Development Grant program in 2006 to help local communities do the hard work of thinking forward: planning for development, investment and collaboration that help create great places all over the region. The community planning and development grant program is one of the Metro Council’s best tools to help communities achieve their visions, reflecting the council’s belief in investing to support communities, create housing and jobs opportunities and improve people’s lives throughout the region. Funded by a regional construction excise tax, these grants are critical planning resources that help communities revitalize existing neighborhoods and plan for the development of new urban areas. For more information, visit oregonmetro.gov.

June 8, 2012 · by pcriadmin · Featured, PCRI

A recent series of articles in The Oregonian titled “Locked Out” has reignited discussion about public investment (and disinvestment) in fair and affordable housing, concentrations of poverty and communities of color, as well as issues of gentrification and displacement.

PCRI applauds efforts to increase awareness and discussion about these issues. Safe, decent and affordable housing can have a profound impact on the health and well-being of the home’s residents and for the community as a whole. Furthermore, culturally competent services provided by PCRI and other community development organizations give residents invaluable tools and support to build stability and self-sufficiency so that these affordable homes can be available in the future to other families who need a hand up.

Unfortunately, while public policy and investment have spurred improvements in many now-desirable Portland-area neighborhoods, many former residents of these neighborhoods have been priced out. The “Locked Out” series serves as evidence that policies and investments that have benefited some residents have not done enough to preserve diverse neighborhoods, prevent institutionalized inequality and displacement, or ensure all families have equal access to quality schools, efficient public transportation or affordable housing near their places of work and community support.

For 20 years, PCRI has invested and reinvested in our community, providing a unique variety of single-family homes, small multi-plexes and community apartments in 30 of Portland’s 95 neighborhoods. We are proud of the benefits our homes provide: PCRI residents are assured a stable and affordable home without fear of displacement by rising rents or changes in ownership; the community also benefits by avoiding concentrations of poverty and ensuring stability of those who work and attend school in the area.

The challenges of displacement, diversity and inclusion identified in the Oregonian’s series are significant, but they can be overcome with thoughtful, proactive, and inclusive policies and investments. You can help by making your voice heard and being educated on the issues.

Here’s what you can do:

1) Make your voice heard: call or write your representatives to let them know where fair and affordable housing is needed.
Portland’s Mayor and City Commissioners represent all Portland residents. Nick Fish is Portland’s housing commissioner.
—To find out who your representative is in the Oregon State Legislature, check here.
—East Portland is represented in the United States Congress by Earl Blumenauer. Contact him here. If you don’t know who your representative is, here.

2) Learn more:

  1. The Oregonian’s four-part report is available on OregonLive.
  2. To learn more about gentrification and housing in North/Northeast Portland, read The Skanners special report.
  3. For more in-depth knowledge, please see the Coalition of Communities of Color.
  4. You can learn about the history of community disinvestment in Albina in an article by Karen Gibson, PCRIs Board President.

3) Please consider supporting PCRI and our commitment to preserve diverse Portland neighborhoods as well as fulfill the Fair Housing Act.

For over 20 years PCRI has reinvested in Portland’s neighborhoods, preserved their diversity and provided tools to help low-income Portland families achieve stability and self-sufficiency.  You can contribute to PCRI here.