|Dear Community Member:
We’re happy to provide you with this update on the Alberta Commons project at NE Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd, and Alberta Street.
As a reminder, the project is designed to convert the long-vacant lot into a neighborhood-serving retail center that complements the local businesses at Vanport Square and provides needed goods and services to the community. This $9.4 million project will consist of approximately 25,000 square feet of leasable space in two separate buildings on the MLK/Alberta commercial lot. Natural Grocers (a quality, affordable, organic grocery retail chain) is the anchor tenant. PDC will be the master lessor for 50 percent of the non-anchor space (5,100 sq. ft.) and will provide discounted commercial space to local, minority-owned businesses. Colas Construction, an African-American, family-owned business, is the general contractor for the project, and Majestic Realty is the developer.
- We anticipate the property will be conveyed from PDC to Majestic and construction will begin in November 2016.
- The construction fencing is up! PDC has issued a permit of entry to Colas to be on the property pending closing.
- The City of Portland has issued building permits to begin construction.
- If the project breaks ground as anticipated in November 2016, the Natural Grocers store will be open by fall 2017.
- The project team will provide an update at a project “community hour” at Horn of Africa in the next few weeks. Please watch for an invitation, and come ask questions of the team.
- The Public Art Subcommittee is planning a community meeting on Tuesday, December 6 from 5 pm to 7 pm at the Curious Comedy Theater. The project team will provide an update, and attendees can meet the artists, hear their inspiration for the art pieces, and provide input on the public art! Please watch for an invitation, and come ask questions of the team.
Community Benefits & Oversight
The Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) resulted in the formation of the Implementation, Monitoring and Accountability Committee (IMAC) to ensure the delivery of the CBA. The IMAC meets quarterly to provide updates on the progress of the Retail Tenanting, Public Art, and Construction Workforce subcommittees established by the CBA. Here’s the status of key elements:
- Construction Diversity: Colas Construction is finalizing contracts with subcontractors and currently anticipates achieving 55% participation by MWESB firms, including 41% by MBE firms.
- Commercial Space: The PDC master-leased space will be subleased to two to six entrepreneurs of color looking for a storefront presence in Northeast. The Retail Tenanting Subcommittee is working to determine the ideal space layout that both activates the area and provides the best opportunities for future tenants to succeed. Please stay tuned for more details and the application process.
- Public Art: Mehran Heard and Arvie Smith are the artists selected for the installation of public art along the east (Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.) and south (Alberta Street) walls of the Natural Grocers building.
- Hiring and Supply Chain opportunities at Natural Grocers: The store is anticipated to have 24-28 employees. Find out more about the Natural Grocers hiring & supply chain.
If you have any questions, please contact project manager Kimberly Moreland at firstname.lastname@example.org or 503-823-3220. You can find out more about the project and background on our website.