Friday morning event attracts big crowd of dignitaries to Orenco

HILLSBORO TRIBUNE PHOTOS: DOUG BURKHARDT - Dignitaries celebrate on the morning of June 12 after cutting a ceremonial ribbon to officially open the new Hub 9 building at Orenco Station. Hillsboro Mayor Jerry Willey is holding the celebratory scissors, with Holland Partner Groups Robbie Dodd to his right. The new structure has 124 apartments.The revolution is continuing in Orenco.

Last Friday, members of the Hillsboro Chamber of Commerce and other dignitaries gathered for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to formally mark the opening of Hub 9 at Orenco Station.

Hub 9, a six-story mixed-use building located at 980 N.E. Orenco Station Loop, was developed by the Holland Partner Group, a Vancouver, Wash.-based real estate investment company.

The ultra-modern Hub 9 residential complex features 124 apartment units with a mixture of studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom homes. In August or September, three locally owned restaurants will open at Hub 9: Ava Roasteria, 9 Dang Thai and Schmizza Public House.

Robbie Dodd, executive vice president of portfolio management for Holland, said Hub 9 is having great success in attracting tenants.

“We have already leased about 75 percent of the apartment homes,” Dodd said.

Hub 9 has more than 9,000 square feet of retail space, 120 parking spaces and bicycle parking facilities. The building’s distinctive look and feel was created by two Portland-based design firms: Leeb Architects and Garrison Hullinger Interior Design.

In 2013, the Holland Partner Group kicked off an ambitious, five-building residential and commercial complex known as the “Platform District” at Orenco with the innovative Platform 14, which opened early that year with 177 apartments. That project was followed with Tessera at Orenco Station, which added another 304 apartments in a building that opened at the beginning of 2014. Hub 9 is the third building in the Platform District project.The newly completed Hub 9 complex is the third building the Holland Partner Group has erected in the Platform District at Orenco Station.

Hillsboro Mayor Jerry Willey, who wielded the large scissors that commemorated the completion of Hub 9, praised the Holland Partner Group for its vision.

“Holland invested a huge amount of money and effort to make this community happen,” Willey said in his remarks after snipping the ceremonial ribbon. “It’s a wonderful and phenomenal development, and it is going to be a tremendous addition to our city. On behalf of all the partners involved, we thank you. We love this partnership.”

With Hub 9 completed, the Holland development team is forging ahead with two additional residential/commercial complexes at Orenco Station. Next up will be the Rowlock building, which will have 255 apartment units and is expected to open in the third quarter of this year. Rowlock will include an upscale restaurant and bakery — La Provence Patisserie & Boulangerie — which is expected to open this winter.

After Rowlock, the fifth and final building in the Platform District at Orenco — Vector — will feature 230 apartment homes. Vector is scheduled to be completed in summer 2016.

“The Platform District is a neighborhood built on connections — connections to local businesses, the outdoors and all the region has to offer,” said Michael Nagy, development manager at Holland Partner Group. “It’s exciting to see the community grow each day, with new residents moving in and locally owned restaurants and shops preparing to open their doors.”

Metro Councilor Kathryn Harrington, who attended the June 12 ribbon-cutting event, said she is very impressed with Holland’s work in creating the Platform District.

“They’ve done an exemplary job,” she said. “I appreciate all the effort they’ve put into attracting local businesses.”

City officials believe the type of development taking place at the Platform District in Orenco is vital to Hillsboro’s growth, as well as providing amenities that are improving the quality of life for local citizens.

“Hub 9 and the Orenco Station Platform District are helping to deliver the housing options that Hillsboro needs for our work force, as well as a new, urban restaurant and retail destination for all residents to enjoy,” said Patrick Preston, Hillsboro’s public affairs manager.

Harrington added that projects such as Hub 9 show that the region’s investment in transit infrastructure is paying off in a major way. There is a MAX light rail station right outside the Hub 9 complex, and the Platform District development has made access to public transit a focal point.

“This project leverages the public investment already made in transit solutions,” Harrington said.

She pointed out that about 25 percent of the residents at Hub 9 are actively using transit systems or bikes, and do not have cars.

“We know that through demographics, but this (Hub 9) is proving it,” Harrington said after the event. “These buildings are not just for housing, but have office and retail businesses too, which makes for much more dynamic neighborhoods. There has been exemplary design in all of this.”

In 2013, Metro contributed $700,000 to help buy down development costs for the new building at Orenco. Harrington said the investment was made because Metro officials believe the project will boost the entire community.

“Regional government invested in this because it ties in to your public investment in light rail,” Harrington said. “More and more people are coming to live in urban neighborhoods like this. It’s exciting for the entire region.”

According to Dodd, the vision for the Platform District projects is a grand one.

“There are local business connections, connections to the city and connections to the coast,” he said. “This is a fabulous place to be. We are committed to making the Orenco District a national treasure we all can share.”

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