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The original item was published from 3/11/2022 4:41:10 PM to 4/2/2022 12:00:07 AM.

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Posted on: March 11, 2022

[ARCHIVED] City Approves MUPTEs for Three Proposed Downtown Riverfront Housing Projects

Artist Rendering of Housing Development

On March 9, Eugene City Council approved ten-year property tax exemptions for three proposed multi-unit housing projects located on the Downtown Riverfront site. In total, the three projects are expected to bring in $160M in construction and add 381 new residential units to the former industrial site. 


The three applications were submitted by Eugene Riverfront District, LLC (ERD), a legal entity established by Atkins Dame, which purchased the first set of parcels in the fall of 2021 for fair market value. The three proposed projects are all 4-stories and will include 130, 95, and 156 units on Parcels 3B/3C, 7, and 9, respectively. (See map.) Construction on the first projects is expected to start later in 2022. 


To be eligible for a MUPTE, projects need to meet seven public benefit criteria, including compact urban development, green building features, local economic impact plan, project design and compatibility, historic and existing housing sensitivity, and demonstration of project need. Projects also need to make a moderate-income housing contribution through designation of moderate-income housing units or payment of a fee to be used to support moderate-income housing. ERD will pay the fee which is equal to 10% of their total exemption, estimated to be about $2M for all three projects.  

 

The addition of dense residential housing to the former utility site will be a significant contribution toward bringing Downtown to the river and activating the new Downtown Riverfront neighborhood. These much-needed housing units contribute to our goal of increasing the amount of downtown housing by 50%; a goal set in the Housing Implementation Pipeline


The Urban Renewal Agency of the City of Eugene (Agency) purchased the approximately 17 acres of Downtown Riverfront land from Eugene Water and Electric Board in 2018, with the intent to transform it into a new neighborhood with a public park and private mixed-use development with affordable housing, market rate housing, and commercial spaces. Based on terms the Agency Board approved in May 2020, the Agency and development team signed a Disposition and Development Agreement for the sale of about 8 acres of Downtown Riverfront property to Atkins Dame.  


Prior to Council vote, the community member review panel made up of technical representatives and neighborhood representatives considered the applications' qualifications for a MUPTE. The Panel concluded all three proposed projects met the public benefit criteria and demonstrated financial need for the exemption.  

 

MUPTE is an incentive program to encourage high quality, multi-unit downtown housing. Both rental and ownership housing is eligible. The program is enabled by state law and offers a 10-year property tax exemption on qualified investments within the downtown area. Council revised the MUPTE program in 2015 after a 2 1/2-year review. The updated program includes new public benefit requirements that made student housing ineligible for the tax exemption and added a community member review panel as well as a review of project financial projections by an independent consultant.  

 

For more information on the MUPTE program and to view the applications, visit www.eugene-or.gov/MUPTE.   


For more information on the Downtown Riverfront, visit www.eugene-or.gov/Riverfront


For more information on the Housing Implementation Pipeline, visit https://www.eugene-or.gov/4889/Housing-Implementation-Pipeline-HIP.

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