N Russell and Williams Collaboration

Home>Interstate, Neighborhoods, Partnerships, Prosperity>N Russell and Williams Collaboration
N Russell and Williams Collaboration 2017-09-12T09:42:03+00:00

Project Description

Collaborative Project:
North Russell Street & Williams Avenue

Contact: Kimberly Moreland, email or 503-823-3220

Legacy Health, Prosper Portland and the City of Portland have formed a partnership to develop a 1.7 acre vacant block at North Russell Street and North Williams Avenue currently owned by Legacy Health. The focus of the development is to honor Portland’s African-American community, contribute to the neighborhood’s vibrancy, and further Legacy Health’s mission of promoting health and wellness for children and families.

The project site is highlighted in yellow.


  • A development that benefits, supports and honors Portland’s African American community and furthers Legacy Health’s mission of promoting health and wellness
  • Implementation of a transparent and community-centered process with significant community engagement.
  • Creation of a Project Working Group to oversee entire community engagement and development process.

Possible Development Options

Land use zoning for the site allows for a wide range of uses in addition to medical center uses – including residential, retail and office uses. Examples of ideas that have been suggested include:

  • Medical offices, a surgery center and patient and family housing center
  • Inter-generational affordable and workforce housing for seniors and families
  • Community gathering spaces
  • Cultural business hub
  • Open space
  • Retail spaces and other community-desired amenities
Possible Scale of Development
Developable Space 1.7 acre site; 222,000 square feet
Inclusionary Housing As per City of Portland policy, if development includes 20 or more residential units, then it must include affordable housing
How many floors? West: Up to 150 ft – or aprx. 10 stories
East: 45 to 75 ft – or aprx. 3-5 stories
Comparable Project Costs $35,000,000 – $75,000,000

Initial Community Input

Legacy Emanuel Community Partnership Committee

This committee, formed in 2012 as part of the Emanuel Reconciliation Project, made the following recommendations:

  • Engage and strengthen communication with the surrounding NE community, especially the African American community.
  • Solicit information from the African American community before development of the vacant land.
  • Any development of the land should include creating wealth – should involve African American businesses (minority contractors, local businesses, etc.)
  • Focus on building affordable housing on the land
  • Honor the history in a way that provides permanent acknowledgement of the events and is accessible to the entire community.

Portland Housing Bureau N/NE Housing Strategy

  • The N/NE Housing Strategy for the Interstate Corridor Urban Renewal Area focused on the following objectives:
    • Bring displaced populations back to the neighborhood
    • Minority contracting for wealth creation
    • Economic development and job creation
    • Increase percentage of businesses owned by people of color
  • Creation of an Oversight Committee responsible for ensuring implementation of strategy
  • Recommends right project for the Legacy Site be determined in a collaborative manner through extensive community engagement process

N/NE Community Development Initiative Action Plan

An Oversight Committee was formed in 2017 to oversee implementation of the N/NE Community Development Initiative Action Plan. The objective of the Action Plan is to foster multi-generational wealth creation and community assets among African Americans and People of Color in Interstate URA:

  • Promote property ownership and redevelopment
  • Support business ownership and growth
  • Investment in new and existing homes
  • Advance Community Livability Projects and support non-profits
  • Catalyze a Cultural-Business Hub to further culturally specific places and economic opportunities
Draft Timeline
August 23, 2017 North/Northeast CDI Oversight Committee to review and discuss the N. Russell/Williams collaborative project. View meeting agenda
September 13, 2017 Prosper Portland Board of Commissioners receives update on status of outreach to Oversight Committee
September North/Northeast CDI Oversight Committee meeting – exact date TBD
October North/Northeast CDI Oversight Committee meeting – exact date TBD