Rose Quarter faces doubts

As Rose Quarter/Memorial Coliseum proposals are considered, concerns arise over cost and who will pay.

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The Portland City Council is close to choosing a developer for the revamp of the Memorial Coliseum.

But beyond the coliseum, questions still remain over what to do with the rest of the Rose Quarter, how much it will cost for the improvements and who will pay for it.

…One of the biggest questions is where the city will find the money to upgrade the coliseum — which it owns — and to build the street, sidewalk, water and sewer improvements that will be needed in the Rose Quarter. Depending on the scope of the projects, such work could easily cost hundreds of millions of dollars.

An obvious source of money is urban renewal funds, the same city financing source that helped spur growth in the Pearl District and South Waterfront area, at least before the economy slowed down. In fact, the Portland Development Commission is overseeing a planning process that could pump $18.5 million or more into new redevelopment projects in North and Northeast Portland. It would add six parcels of property — including the Rose Quarter — to the existing Interstate Corridor Urban Renewal Area, which has already helped fund such projects as the Interstate MAX line and the New Columbia housing development.

Read the full story at the Portland Tribune.

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