Efforts are moving forward to transform the area along the Willamette River near downtown Eugene. Last week, the city council heard from a Portland firm tasked with developing the Eugene Water & Electric property.
Williams and Dame presented a vision for the 16-acre property that includes housing, retail, restaurants and parkland. The firm is in an exclusive negotiating agreement with the city to develop the riverfront property. Project leader Jim Atkins says his firm is not new to this type of undertaking.
“Our company was the original developer of the Burlington Northern Railyards in Portland’s Pearl district that really became the heart of the Pearl District. Also, we were the master developer, the land developer of Portland’s South Waterfront neighborhood. Both of those neighborhoods in their early days faced a lot of the same challenges.”
There are lots of details to be ironed out including the cost of infrastructure. But Atkins hopes building on the property could begin early next year. The sale of the property from EWEB to the City of Eugene is expected to be finalized soon.