This project is an urban retail shopping center consisting of approximately 20,000 square feet of gross leasable space on the MLK/Alberta commercial lot. The finished project includes Natural Grocers (a quality, affordable, organic grocery retail chain) as the anchor tenant and will provide affordable commercial space to local minority-owned businesses. Colas Construction, an African-American, family-owned business located in the neighborhood, was the general contractor for the project, and Majestic Realty was the developer.
Alberta Commons will boost economic activity in NE Portland by supporting surrounding local businesses and providing community benefits that were negotiated by a community-centered Project Working Group (PWG). The PWG process resulted in the formation of the Implementation, Monitoring and Accountability Committee (IMAC) which will ensure the delivery of the Community Benefits Agreement (CBA), providing oversight, reviewing the hiring plan, and engaging the target community with employment opportunities.
Prosper Portland’s Affordable Commercial Tenanting Program is available at Alberta Commons, offering a unique opportunity for small businesses, including those owned by people of color, to gain a foothold in the retail mix of the area, provide needed goods and services to the neighborhood and create lasting, beneficial relationships with the Northeast Portland community. The program encompasses lease priority to existing local businesses, particularly those owned by people of color; tenant improvement allowance and/or reduced rates; opportunity to build community among tenants; and connections to business-building resources. Available spaces range from 490 to 1207 square feet at $18/square foot.
Beginning in 1997 Prosper Portland assembled nearly two full blocks between NE Alberta and NE Sumner and between Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. and Garfield, following the goals in the Albina Community Plan (ACP) to revive commerce on NE Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. by fostering the development of strong commercial nodes at key intersections.
The King Neighborhood Commercial Development Strategy (2000) envisioned a mix of neighborhood-scale commercial and retail uses for the assembled blocks. The strategy guided the development of the north block into two phases: I) the 36,000 sf Vanport Square commercial condominium project (16 independent commercial condominium units in two buildings) in 2008; and II) ten single family homes along Garfield, in 2012.
The MLK-South block is the second of the two blocks to be developed with an anchor retail tenant (preferably a grocer) that would attract more foot traffic to the area and advance the strategy’s vision.
About the site
1.67 acres made up of seven adjacent vacant parcels (72,931 square feet), including 438 ft of frontage on NE MLK
One parcel with a residence (5,000 square feet, .11 acre) facing Garfield
Zoned Central Employment with Design Review Overlay (EXd)
An easement for an 8’ combo sewer runs north-south through the alley in the middle of the block
The 15’ alley serves three existing properties in the northwest corner of the block that will not be impacted by the development
The surrounding area is primarily residential to the west of the site with commercial concentrated on MLK
Alberta Commons, anchored by Natural Grocers, is at a high-traffic corner and will bring new excitement to the neighborhood, offering small, minority-owned businesses the opportunity to participate in the retail mix.