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New housing units come in response to legislative mandates for more affordable housing

PMG PHOTO: RAY PITZ - John Goodhouse, left, Tigard City Council president; Jason Snider, Tigard mayor; left, Tigard Mayor Jason Snider; Alaina Robertson, Taylor Morrison division president; and David Nielsen, CEO of Home Builders Association of Metro Portland, turn over shovels of dirt at Thursdays groundbreaking for Taylor Morrison's Innovate at Eastridge in River Terrace on May 20.Two years ago, the Oregon Legislature passed a law to promote the construction of so-called "missing middle" housing.

Now, some of that housing will come to Tigard's upmarket River Terrace neighborhood.

On Thursday, May 20, representatives and local officials turned over shovels of dirt to highlight Taylor Morrison's Innovate at Eastridge in River Terrace.

The development will include 13 duplexes, containing a total of 26 units, along with six triplexes, containing 18 units. Those homes will be mixed in with more spendy single-family homes in the fast-growing neighborhood, where Taylor Morrison — the fifth-largest U.S. homebuilder, and one that is also active in the nearby Villebois, South Cooper Mountain and South Hillsboro neighborhoods — is the primary residential developer.

Innovate at Eastridge is believed to be the first development of its type in Tigard. It was planned out in response to the passage of Oregon House Bill 2001, the 2019 law that requires cities of 10,000 or more residents to permit missing middle housing in virtually all residential areas.

Examples of missing middle housing include duplexes, triplexes, rowhomes, clustered housing and more.

The idea is to increase "housing diversity," building homes that first-time homebuyers and those on fixed or limited incomes can afford.

"While Innovate at Eastridge will be the first neighborhood to feature these new plans, we at Taylor Morrison are excited about the future opportunities to incorporate these plans into other cities where we're currently building as well as those we haven't yet stepped into," Alaina Robertson, Taylor Morrison division president, said at the site.

So far, 900 homebuyers have purchased homes in River Terrace, she said.

Robertson said the new River Terrace duplexes and triplexes will be designed to look like single-family homes and will include several styles and floorplans.PMG PHOTO: RAY PITZ - Alaina Robertson, center, Taylor Morrison division president, speaks during a groundbreaking ceremony May 20 at River Terrace as Tigard Mayor Jason Snider, left, and Ezra Hammer, land acquisition manager for Taylor Morrison, look on.

"The goal is to create multi-family opportunities, mixed into what would be kind of a traditional master plan, if you will, so that they still get the benefits of community parks … and they just feel like it's a normal neighborhood," she said.

Mayor Jason Snider praised the new project, calling it a milestone in Tigard.

"It's the first-of-its-kind demonstration of middle housing existing side-by-side with conventional detached single homes in new neighborhoods," Snider said, adding, "We've heard resoundingly from Tigard's residents that we not only need more housing but need more housing variety."

He said middle housing is an important part of meeting those needs and to offer housing options for all incomes. That's needed, he believes, in order to house the region's growing population.

"These are great for the youth who are in an apartment now to have something they own," said Tigard City Council President John Goodhouse, who also attended the groundbreaking. "There's always been that concern in Tigard … that your kids grew up here, but then they have to move elsewhere."

In recent years, Tigard has aggressively championed affordable apartments for lower income renters.COURTESY PHOTO: TAYLOR MORRISON - Duplexes at Innovate at Eastridge in River Terrace are the first in the city to be mixed in with single-family homes as required by Oregon HB 2001, designed to ensure cities offer a variety of affordable housing.

"The city acted early in reforming its zoning and development regulations and enacting policies with our housing options projects. We actually did this before the state act," said Snider.

He added that Tigard is proud to "be a community that supplies housing opportunity for all and we look forward to not only this project but many more like it."

Construction is expected to begin right away.


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