Well, then. This sure snuck in there.
Apparently the Wikman Building is close to being bought, and its purchase is going up for vote this Thursday, July 31. According to the Oregonian, the resulting yea or nay vote will determine whether a team of investors will be able to purchase the Multnomah County building and former library.
Yes, the Wikman Building–located at 64th and Holgate, just north of Laurelwood Park–was once the Arleta Library. The building and library date back to 1918.
When the County deemed the building surplus property a few years ago, a team of community organizations sought to purchase the site and turn it into an urban grange. That proposal ultimately fell through, as the team attempting to purchase the site couldn’t put a financial plan together. Or at least not one that convinced the County they were capable of making money.
Fast forward a bit, and the County again put out an RFP for the Wikman site in March of this year. After sorting through the various bids, the County favored one proposed by a team of investors seeking to turn the building into office and community space–not too different from the urban grange proposal preceding it two years prior. The difference, though, is that the current team seeking to buy the building has cash on hand, as well as further capital and experience to restore the space.
You can read more of the Oregonian article here.
One thing of note: the neighborhood landscape has changed somewhat since the first proposal fell through in 2013. There have been two multi-unit residential projects constructed within two blocks of the site (with a third in the planning process); the Foster Streetscape Plan has been approved; the Foster area is generally seeing more investment money flowing through the neighborhood. According to the Oregonian article, the bidding team feels there’s “some real potential for long-term development” in the neighborhood.
We shall see.