It's (Jack)hammer Time...Groundbreaking Happens For 5th Street Market Expansion

Feb 14, 2019

Dozens gathered in downtown Eugene today for a groundbreaking ceremony. It kicked off the 5th Street Public Market expansion…the largest private commercial development in the city’s history. 

From left to right: Jacob Fox, Casey Barrett, Brian Obie, and Steve Ochs all let loose with a golden jackhammer at today's event. Fox and Ochs are with Homes For Good, Lane County's affordable housing agency. Barrett and Obie are vice-president and president of Obie Companies, respectively.
Credit Brian Bull / KLCC

Standing behind a golden jackhammer, Obie Companies Vice President Casey Barrett talked up the $75 million expansion.

Obie Companies' president Brian Obie (left) and its vice-president, Casey Bartell (right) fire up the crowd.
Credit Brian Bull / KLCC

“We want urban housing, we want a vibrant commercial base in our downtown corridor create a destination.”

The jackhammer was a hit. Obie executives and city officials took turns breaking apart the hard soil near where a hotel, retail-office space, and apartment building will all be built.

Among those attending was Jacob Fox, of Homes For Good. His agency is a project partner, with plans to build a low-rent apartment building adjacent to the expansion.

Eugene Mayor Lucy Vinis, at today's groundbreaking.
Credit Brian Bull / KLCC

“I think it’s really a sign of our growing maturity as a community that these public-private partnerships are occurring more and more.”

Construction is set to finish in fall 2020.

Copyright 2019, KLCC.