Wapato sale to support affordable housing
The Multnomah County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously in early November to dedicate the proceeds from the sale of the Wapato Detention Facility to support affordable housing.
The sales agreement to sell the property will net $10.8 million, which the board will use to support a pledge to create affordable housing with wraparound services attached. The county, city of Portland and Home Forward all committed to work with community partners to construct 2,000 new units of housing in the next 10 years.
"This crisis is fueled by a lack of quality, stable affordable housing options," said Commissioner Lori Stegmann in a statement. "By addressing the root causes of our housing crisis, we move one step closer to solving homelessness."
Stegmann, who serves District 4 that comprises much of East Multnomah County, supported the sale and sponsored the resolution for directing the proceeds to housing.
At this point, there are no strategies for where to build the affordable housing. That will be determined during the budget planning for fiscal year 2019. Stegmann has stated a desire to use the funds county-wide. Some of the discussions have been to create permanent supportive housing, bridge funding for development projects that may be impacted by federal tax reform efforts, and scale Gresham's rental housing inspection program to be used across all of Multnomah County.