First look at ‘Lot 700’ design ideas

Columbia Cascade Housing Corporation (CCHC) hosted a community discussion for its Hood River Community Housing Development on Lot 700 Jan. 11 at Westside Elementary School with about 50 people in attendance.

Also known as Morrison Park, the parcel owned by the City of Hood River is slated for development as affordable housing. Attendees made it clear last week that any development should retain maximum open space and as many trees as possible including the white oaks that dot the property. Officials said the design period will take another six months on the 4.5-acre project.

After a presentation from CCHC’s development team members, Carleton Hart Architecture and Greenworks Landscape Architecture, those in attendance didn’t hesitate to provide constructive feedback as to how the initial development concepts could be enhanced, according to Joel Madsen, Executive Director of CCHC. “It was refreshing to see so many community members positively engaging in this important community development. This is exactly what we are looking for as the development of Lot 700 winds its way forward,” Madsen said.

Arborist and traffic studies have yet to be performed, and will influence final plans, according to Brian Carleton of Carleton Hart and architect Melissa Soots.

CCHS presented a conceptual plan for three large structures to comprise 65 housing units, including one- and two-bedroom units and studios, with parking, and access via Wasco Street and Jaymar Avenue. The units would be permanently administered as affordable housing. Consultants looked at 50-unit and 85-unit plans; the plan remains conceptual at this point.

“Did you look at a 30- or 40-unit configuration, or did you start with the assumption that you needed that (larger) scale?” asked Susan Crowley, a Hood River citizen who led an appeal of the Lot 700 rezone that is now pending before the state Land Use Board of Appeals.

View the community discussion at CCHC’s website: and click on “news.”

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