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Old 01-04-2013, 11:23 PM
 
1,015 posts, read 1,542,642 times
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. They will be four stories with a few retail shops on the ground floor. There have been similar larger buildings built all over Portland in older neighborhoods some with treadmill type lifts for bicycles. No elevators for people.

These units are definitely not for families. They are not for the elderly since the ground floors are taken up with retail space and many elderly people are not able to climb four flights of stairs although I realize there are those who can.

These apartments are built with young people in mind. True some of the buildings do have one bedroom apartments and a few two bedroom apartments but most are small studios as the ones I have described. Portland really doesn't much care for families these days.

I have lived in my neighborhood for nearly 25 years in apartments. Some have lived here even longer in homes and small apartment complexes. But a young urban planner has said just about what you are saying that city neighborhoods at least in this city are geared for the young. The new large buildings are geared for the young who are not meant to live in them for very long. Just a couple of years maybe. I guess this urban planner never heard that the constant upheaval of people on the move is one of the main causes of urban blight and a stable successful city neighborhood is one in which people stay.[/quote]
I don't think it's legal to build a 4 story building without an elevator for people, if for no other reason than disabled access. But I agree that apartment neighborhoods shouldn't just be for young people. In a densifying city like Portland I believe there's resistance to apartments by older residents, why should they move out of their house even if it's now bigger than they need. In Portland (and some other cities) demand among the young is so strong that it's easy to build for them.

In many European countries the solution to this is cooperative or sometimes municipal housing companies that build bigger units because it's part of their mission, and aren't worried about the profitability of it. A profit motivated developer will typically build smaller units if possible because overall they'll bring in more revenue. I know some cities have looked at incentives to build larger units, like maybe allowing a density bonus if a building contains more than a specified percentage of units with at least 2 bedrooms. If the city or a governmental entity helps fund a building then the city can require a certain percentage of larger units. On an unassisted market rate transaction, it seems like it take a very delicate balance to regulate and get the larger units, without making the apartment building infeasible to build.

I wonder if deliberately seeding senior housing complexes in key spots might help redress the balance.

There's been a cultural shift that now supports and celebrates young people living in center cities, which is different from say 30 years ago. Now there needs to also be a cultural shift that supports and celebrates older people living in these neighborhoods.
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:48 AM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,697 posts, read 23,672,920 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlite View Post
. I don't think it's legal to build a 4 story building without an elevator for people, if for no other reason than disabled access. But I agree that apartment neighborhoods shouldn't just be for young people. In a densifying city like Portland I believe there's resistance to apartments by older residents, why should they move out of their house even if it's now bigger than they need. In Portland (and some other cities) demand among the young is so strong that it's easy to build for them.

In many European countries the solution to this is cooperative or sometimes municipal housing companies that build bigger units because it's part of their mission, and aren't worried about the profitability of it. A profit motivated developer will typically build smaller units if possible because overall they'll bring in more revenue. I know some cities have looked at incentives to build larger units, like maybe allowing a density bonus if a building contains more than a specified percentage of units with at least 2 bedrooms. If the city or a governmental entity helps fund a building then the city can require a certain percentage of larger units. On an unassisted market rate transaction, it seems like it take a very delicate balance to regulate and get the larger units, without making the apartment building infeasible to build.

I wonder if deliberately seeding senior housing complexes in key spots might help redress the balance.

There's been a cultural shift that now supports and celebrates young people living in center cities, which is different from say 30 years ago. Now there needs to also be a cultural shift that supports and celebrates older people living in these neighborhoods.
I didn't think it was either but they are doing it. These buildings are going up all over. Lets face it, if enough palms are greased anything goes. I don't know how these are getting past the ADA but apparently they are.

But this is a pretty politically corrupt city especially when it comes to real estate. My landlord was badgered by some city managers and certain realtors to sell one of his apartment buildings to make a larger lot for one of these new ones but refused. He has been getting grief from city managers ever since.

In response to your last paragraph, it is interesting. thirty years ago, my neighborhood which is considered one of the trendiest and most gentrified in Portland was very different. It was populated by many elderly people due to the fact that it was a bit shabby and not considered the safest place to live. But it was passable and best of all inexpensive. It was and still is near two good bus lines and a large supermarket. It is fifteen minutes from downtown. Ideal for old people. And those who could not afford the higher rental apartments of the better neighborhoods.

Then the young professionals just starting out who could not afford buy houses in the better neighborhoods saw they could take the old homes and fix them up bought up shabby old rental houses for a song and worked on the houses themselves on weekends. You saw then all over over.

Suddenly it became hot property. The apartment building owners made no improvements but boy did they raise the rents. The old people couldn't afford to live here any longer. They moved out in droves. Cultural shift? That was the first cultural shift. The old folks moving out. The young folks moving in. Yes a cultural shift back just a little bit to where it once was would be nice.

And so we get back to those new buildings I was talking about. If just one had an elevator. If just one could be affordable for older people it would be great. I couldn't agree with you more. I think young and old living together in the same area is the best combination.
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:22 PM
 
Location: Thunder Bay, ON
2,610 posts, read 3,763,081 times
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In the Trinity Spadina electoral riding, which contains half of Downtown Toronto, the share of the population aged 25-29 is 160% above the metro area average. In Toronto Centre, which contains the other half of downtown, the share of 25-29 year olds is 77% above average.

When you don't have children and work downtown, it makes sense to live there, the price differential for owning a car compared to the cost of transit makes up for the higher rent downtown, especially if you're young and have high car insurance rates. Renting a 1 bedroom apartment in an apartment downtown plus a transit pass is about the same as the cost of owning a car and renting a basement apartment in the suburbs. Since the basement apartment might not even have windows, and the downtown apartment will also allow you to cut down on commute times (if you work downtown), have a view and windows, and live in a much more exciting place for a young person, it makes sense to live there.

Whether or not that will hold true if these young people have children is less obvious, since a house or rowhouse near downtown is quite a bit more expensive than one in the suburbs. However, there are several reasons why I think they are more likely to stay in the city than in the past. They are having children later, and fewer of them, so they're less likely to need as much living space. Since they have children later, it gives them more time to get attached to their city neighbourhood, so they might be more likely to compromise. The city is also nicer than in the past, land is more expensive, gas is more expensive, and congestion is worse.
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:19 PM
 
2,493 posts, read 2,195,305 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
A 2BR + den is the same rent as a studio in DC? It's sure not that way in any other city where I have lived. What the heck is a "den" in an apt. anyway?
Per building & fire safety codes a "bedroom" needs an operatable window of a defined size.
The layout of many apartment buildings creates rooms without exterior walls (or windows) so
the developer calls it a "den or study or flex space" but it often gets used as a bedroom.
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Old 01-05-2013, 09:47 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
1,574 posts, read 2,531,822 times
Reputation: 1886
I'm 20 years old and prefer walkable, urban environments. They are much more exciting places to live than suburban areas with a lot more to offer. I like being able to walk/bike and see all kinds of different sights and events taking place.

The architecture of suburbs here in Texas (strip malls and cookie cutter housing) just looks so depressing.

I do not like cars because I hate the risk of accidents (I've been in one), the cost of maintenance/gas, and the boredom of driving. Why drive when I could be walking/biking which I find are much more fun activities as I can more easily take in the sights in the local areas (much more human scale). Also, it is better for the environment and good for my health to walk/bike.

I used to be overweight while living in a suburb, now I am in-shape and constantly active after I moved to an urban environment. Why? Because I am constantly walking and cycling. My diet hasn't changed much.

Last edited by LiveUrban; 01-05-2013 at 09:55 PM..
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Old 01-06-2013, 08:53 PM
 
2,046 posts, read 4,276,141 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LiveUrban View Post
I'm 20 years old and prefer walkable, urban environments. They are much more exciting places to live than suburban areas with a lot more to offer. I like being able to walk/bike and see all kinds of different sights and events taking place.

The architecture of suburbs here in Texas (strip malls and cookie cutter housing) just looks so depressing.

I do not like cars because I hate the risk of accidents (I've been in one), the cost of maintenance/gas, and the boredom of driving. Why drive when I could be walking/biking which I find are much more fun activities as I can more easily take in the sights in the local areas (much more human scale). Also, it is better for the environment and good for my health to walk/bike.

I used to be overweight while living in a suburb, now I am in-shape and constantly active after I moved to an urban environment. Why? Because I am constantly walking and cycling. My diet hasn't changed much.
bingo!!! cars and suburbs are obsolete. Out with the old in with the new.
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Old 01-07-2013, 12:00 AM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,697 posts, read 23,672,920 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qjbusmaster View Post
bingo!!! cars and suburbs are obsolete. Out with the old in with the new.
This comment made me smile. Walkable cities are much, much older than suburbs. But I am glad they are seeing a revival.
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Old 01-07-2013, 05:05 PM
 
Location: bend oregon
929 posts, read 844,493 times
Reputation: 351
i like the suburbs, I'm moving to portland soon from the country and ill be by the max.
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Old 01-07-2013, 05:52 PM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,697 posts, read 23,672,920 times
Reputation: 35449
Quote:
Originally Posted by drum bro View Post
i like the suburbs, I'm moving to portland soon from the country and ill be by the max.
Which MAX is that?
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Old 01-07-2013, 06:01 PM
 
Location: bend oregon
929 posts, read 844,493 times
Reputation: 351
the one that goes on burnside
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