Breaking News
More () »

Affordable housing opens in North Portland for people with disabilities, struggling with homelessness

Hattie Redmond Apartments has 60 studio units geared to help Black people with disabilities, who struggle with homelessness, find a stable place to live.

PORTLAND, Ore. — A new affordable housing apartment complex, Hattie Redmond Apartments, has opened in North Portland's Kenton neighborhood. It's ran by Urban League of Portland and the Home Forward organization that helps administer housing programs.

The Hattie Redmond Apartments, named after an Oregon civil rights activist, offers long-term housing for people with disabilities experiencing homelessness. The complex offers 60 units with a variety of amenities. 

The project is geared towards the Black/African American community, with the people working as outreach workers inside the building also being Black. 

Charles Coleman was homeless for 16 years before moving in.

"When I was injured I wasn't able to work full time," Coleman said. "I got progressively worse and the bills began to stack up."

Coleman is on disability and Urban League helps supplement his rent payment. He said he would not be able to afford the apartment otherwise. 

The building is located in the traditionally Black Albina neighborhood. One of the goals of the project is to reconnect Black people to the neighborhood.

Coleman said he's thankful he's found a home. 

"I walked around my house, my apartment, by myself. It may not be the biggest but to me it was all the room in the world because I had my personal space," Coleman said. 

Officials from Urban League and Home Forward said the Black homeless community is over-represented and underserved. The 34,000 square feet building is directedly on the Yellow MAX line. It offers laundry, a computer lab and an outdoor green space for the residents. 

The project was funded through the 2018 Metro Housing Bond allocated by the Portland Housing Bureau. 

"It hurts me everyday when I'm at the Urban League office to know that fewer and fewer people who grew up, who raised their families here, can't afford to continue living here," Urban League CEO Nkenge Harmon Johnson said. 

Before You Leave, Check This Out