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Agenda & Minutes

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Medford Urban Renewal (View All)

Medford Urban Renewal Agency Board Study Session Agenda & Minutes

Thursday, January 09, 2020

January 9, 2020                                       

Immediately Following City Council Study Session                                                                                 
Medford City Hall, Medford Room
411 W. 8th Street, Medford, Oregon

The Medford Urban Renewal Agency Study Session was called to order at 8:20 p.m. in the Medford Room of the Medford City Hall on the above date with the following members and staff present:
Board members Clay Bearnson, Kay Brooks, Tim D’Alessandro, Dick Gordon, Alex Poythress, Eric Stark, Kevin Stine, Gary Wheeler and Michael Zarosinski; City Manager Brian Sjothun, Deputy City Attorney Eric Mitton, Medford Urban Renewal Executive Director Harry Weiss, Planning Director Matt Brinkley, Deputy City Recorder Winnie Shepard
Downtown Housing & Residential Market Analysis
Overview of Study Scope & Findings
Planning Director Matt Brinkley presented the key findings from a recent housing study for the City.  Although it was a City-wide study, there was an emphasis on the downtown area and Liberty Park.  (See attached PowerPoint.)  
The Board discussed the need for an estimated 1700+ housing units over the next decade.
Applications for MURA Policies & Projects
Medford Urban Renewal Executive Director Harry Weiss outlined various types of housing, noting that the majority of Medford’s apartments were garden style. He stated that all housing expenses, rent and utilities, should not exceed 30% of household income.  He extensively explained monthly rent expenses, the cost per square foot, construction expense, and various factors that impact the cost of real estate, etc.  (See attached PowerPoint.) 
Board member Gordon suggested the City build the workforce housing needed and retain ownership of property.  Mr. Weiss provided options for City support of housing projects such as a land lease, donating the land to the developer, working with Housing Authority and/or contributing capital versus directly building and managing housing.  He also noted that he is reviewing multiple housing options for consideration by the Board.
MURA Updates
Mr. Weiss is preparing the annual report to be filed with the State of Oregon; it will be presented for Board approval at the beginning of February. 
Mr. Weiss met with Elaine Howard from Elaine Howard Consulting, LLC regarding the creation of additional MURA districts. She recommended a “Success Audit” of the accomplishments and shortfalls within the current district before determining whether to create another. This audit would include a very thorough and critical review of the current MURA district, City and MURA goals and the circumstances for the goals that were not met. Mr. Weiss requested direction regarding a success audit, noting it could be helpful for other agencies to support a new MURA district and it should be completed by an unbiased third party.    
There were no objections to Mr. Weiss preparing information regarding the scope of services for a success audit for Board review.
Meeting adjourned 9:07 p.m.
Winnie Shepard, CMC
Deputy City Record

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