Portland mayor rethinking urban renewal districts

Portland mayor rethinking urban renewal districts

Portland Mayor Charlie Hales is considering retiring or shrinking urban renewal efforts in the Pearl District to return $43 million in added property taxes to the local government.

The glitzy Pearl District, along with gritty Old Town and Chinatown, constitute the River District urban renewal area, one of the PDC’s biggest redevelopment success stories. But the district also keeps $2.17 billion in property off the regular tax rolls to finance continuing redevelopment.

If the city were to close down the entire River District urban renewal area this year, the PDC could put the property back on the tax rolls seven years earlier than planned, says Patrick Quinton, PDC executive director. But the city, county and schools still would have to wait until 2018 to get an infusion of property taxes, he says, because that’s how long the PDC expects it will take to pay off bonded debt from the River District.

Read more at The Portland Tribune.