Last week in Tigard, Northwest Housing Alternatives and their partners celebrated the grand opening of Alongside Senior Housing. The project received $6,270,000 in Metro affordable housing bond funds, toward total development costs of $25,586,313. It is one of over 50 bond-funded projects in some phase of production across greater Portland.
The new apartment community consists of 57 apartments, all of which are reserved for people aged 62 and older. Twenty-three apartments are for very low-income households, meaning people who earn less than 30% of the area median income ($33,840 for a household of four). These apartments come with project-based vouchers, which means residents pay 30% of their income for rent. Five of these are specifically for veterans of the armed forces, through the federal Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program. The remaining apartments are for households whose income is at or below 60% AMI ($67,680 for a household of four) but above 30% AMI.
"Seniors face a serious affordability crisis in our region. Folks on fixed income need to be able to live with safety and stability," said Metro Councilor Gerritt Rosenthal. "Tigard is an important and bold partner in delivering on our promise to Metro voters to provide accessible housing."
Alongside Senior Housing is near Fanno Creek Park, Tigard City Hall and Tigard Public Library. It is also within easy walking distance to public transit, which provides a unique opportunity for a transit-oriented development in a community that is rapidly evolving into a more walkable and livable hub. Universal Plaza, approximately half a mile from the site, hosts the Tigard Area Farmers Market, food carts and cultural events.
The apartment community is also walking distance from the Tigard Senior Center, and residents will be connected to Meals on Wheels and meal services at the senior center. Additionally, the Washington County Disability, Aging, & Veteran Services department will provide referrals to programs and services for residents and coordinate with other providers to ensure residents are fully supported. Case management services for veterans moving from homelessness will be provided by the Veterans Administration.
This project will utilize Northwest Housing Alternatives’ innovative marketing and outreach model designed for service to communities of color in greater Portland. With the help of constituencies of the Coalition of Communities of Color, NHA will do outreach to underserved communities in Washington County and partner with culturally specific organizations to make sure that those least likely to apply will have opportunities to live at Alongside. The project team will help applicants overcome barriers in the application process using low-barrier screening criteria, an individualized review process, and clear communication protocols for all.
Over 1,000 new homes have now been built across greater Portland using Metro affordable housing bond funds, for a total of more than 4,500 in some stage of production thanks to the voter-approved measure.