BEND, OR -- After more than a decade without much in the way of multi-family housing construction in Bend, developers have proposed a slew of new apartments. The city could see more than 1,500 new units in the next few years.
But, Pat Kesgard with Compass Commercial tells KBND opposition is mounting by neighbors of those developments. "About 500 of those are still in the preliminary stages; we don’t know if they’re going to move forward or not. And, so it’s really a challenge. You’ve got the city that’s agreed to pass on some SDC fees for affordable housing; Park and Rec opted out, they may well change that decision. So, there’s a lot of momentum to make things happen and we just have to wait and see."
Kesgard believes that opposition doesn’t have much of an argument, but could put development at risk. "By far, the majority, if not all of them, are outright allowed use. But, when these people say 'I don’t want this built in my backyard,' then the developer has to decide whether to fight it. Can these people potentially delay the project? Yes. Just like OSU [Cascades]." And, he says developers could decide the fight isn't worth the cost. "Interest rates are going to go up and in some point in time, it’s no longer going to be affordable for that developer to build those apartments. So, it’s a real issue."