As a follow up to last weeks post on Zidell’s near term plans for their South Waterfront property, yes they are moving forward. It was reported in the Portland Business Journal (full text can be found on Skyscraper Pages here) last week that Jay Zidell confirmed that his company intends to develop the 30 acres it own in South Waterfront into a mix of office, residential and retail that will complement the existing development and take advantage of the coming light rail line. They wasted no time getting started, scheduling a pre-application conference with the city for February 21st to discuss a proposal for a 7-story residential building with ground floor retail/restaurant space designed by ZGF.
As an interesting twist, the project includes no car parking, just space for 152 bikes. It is a real test of the trend towards no parking/low parking buildings. Perhaps it is an indication that the project is to be more strongly marketed more towards students being how it is conveniently located so near OHSU and just a short street car or bike ride from PSU. Project, the developer mentioned before as associated with this proposal, has been carving out a niche in student housing with two very nice projects completed in Eugene and possible one in the works in Corvalis. It would only be natural that they would bring their successful format to their home market at some point.
Regardless of what form the building ultimately take, it is good to learn (especially from the guy who actually makes the decisions) that things are going to start happening on the Zidell land as the economy heals. I am also glad to hear that barges will continue to slide into the Willamette from the Zidell yards for a while to come – I want Portland to be a growing, new economy city but also maintain its industrial heritage. I look forward to seeing what arises.