Old LCC Building
The 1059 Willamette Building was vacated in 2013 when LCC opened its new Downtown Campus at 10th Avenue and Olive Street. The 66,000 square foot facility has three floors with a full basement. A key goal is to transform this large, vacant building into an active use, contributing to downtown vitality and economic prosperity.
Community development is in the early stages of investigating the possibility of using 1059 Willamette, the site of the old LCC downtown campus, as a land banking site. In April 2019, the City Manager submitted a Letter of Interest to President Hamilton at LCC, that stated the Urban Renewal Agency would like to purchase the property for $500,000, subject to approval from the City Council (acting as the Urban Renewal Agency). On May 16, the LCC Board of Directors unanimously passed a motion to authorize President Hamilton to take all actions necessary or appropriate to sell and convey the property to the URA. Currently, $3M of Downtown Urban Renewal dollars is budgeted towards the building and its renovation towards a storefront that contributes to the region’s economic prosperity.
Community Development Division staff are exploring the use of Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to purchase the site as a land bank for the potential development of affordable/work force housing. Given the buildings strategic location and our need for more affordable housing options we believe there is high potential to establish housing on the site. Next steps include conducting an environmental assessment and a review of the historic significance of the building, both requirements of federally funded projects.
LCC has estimated building improvements to cost between $8 million to $12 million. These are very early estimates. LCC will have more detailed information on project costs once additional work and a feasibility study are completed. Improvements could include tenant improvements, seismic upgrade, updating building systems, façade improvements, and technology. The Urban Renewal amendment makes the project eligible for up to $6 million, with current estimated range of $1 million to $3 million.
Important next steps of the project include an Environmental Review and a more in depth look at the historic qualities of the building. Both of these steps are required for using CDBG funds, and their outcomes will be a large factor in deciding the funding source for purchasing the site. CDBG funds also have a community engagement requirement.
When Urban Renewal dollars are used on the site, the following project timeline will apply, providing multiple opportunities for community engagement.