Ear to the Ground
Ear to the Ground
Our attorney contributors share relevant and timely insight into real estate, energy law, water law, and environmental issues.
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The Fair-Haired Dumbbell Regulation A+ Offering

On the corner of NE MLK and Burnside in Portland, the new Fair-Haired Dumbbell building is nearly complete. The building has garnered attention for its unique architectural design and painting plans. But more important for developers is the way the…
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Vancouver Is Not Portland, and That's Just Right

Vancouver and Portland have a relationship that is, well, complicated. For some they are too close, and Vancouver seems bland and uninteresting, lost in the glare reflected from its more glamorous neighbor. For others, they are too far apart…
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"Infrastructure Week" – In Case You Missed It

For those of you who may have been distracted by other events in the news, let me recap the Trump Administration’s "Infrastructure Week" for you. Monday, June 5: President Trump kicked off the week with a formal East Room signing ceremony, complete…
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Oregon House Passes Hidden Property Tax Increase

The Oregon House of Representatives just passed a bill (now headed to the Senate) that will significantly increase property taxes in some Oregon cities. House Bill 2088 allows cities to pick the method for determining a property's taxable value after…
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Forward-Thinking Senior Living Community Blazes Net-Zero Neighborhood Trail

By their nature, senior living communities are forward-thinking, always keeping an eye on 10, 20, 30 years down the road. Rose Villa, a Portland, Oregon nonprofit continuing care retirement community (CCRC), exemplifies this forward-thinking strategy…
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Resilient Design: Preparing for Disruption

In January and February, the New York Times ran a series of articles on resilient design. The concept of resilient design is just what it sounds like — incorporating features in the design of the built environment that help make buildings…
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Portland's Commercial Real Estate Boom: Is the End Near?

There is no doubt that Portland's commercial real estate market is on fire, and has been for several years. But what goes around comes around, so when is the next down-cycle coming? Based on a recent Portland Business Journal survey, most commercial…
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Mall Expansion in Beaverton is Taking Off

The expansion of Cedar Hills Crossing mall in Beaverton, located on SW Cedar Hills Boulevard approximately between Hall Boulevard and Walker Road, is well underway. The buildings that needed to make way have been razed and the site now looks poised…
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Is Property Tax Reform Coming to Oregon?

As our state faces a $1.6 billion budget shortfall, lawmakers are considering a number of ways to raise taxes to bridge the gap. One current proposal asks Oregonians to reconsider Measure 50, their 1990s-era property tax revolt. Senate Joint…
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Industrial Land Boom in Portland Still Can't Keep Up With Demand

2016 saw the addition of 2.3 million square feet of new industrial space in the Portland Metro region, slightly less than was added in 2015 but otherwise the largest annual growth since before the Great Recession. But that was not enough to meet…
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A Case Study on the Accuracy of Real Market Values on Tax Statements

In my previous Ear to the Ground post, I discussed real market values and how they can become inaccurate on your tax statement. For this week’s post, I wanted to offer a real-life example of how this discrepancy played out for a client of mine and…
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Is the Real Market Value on Your Tax Statement Accurate?

One of the most common questions asked about property tax in Oregon is whether the assessor's real market value ("RMV") is accurate. The short answer is, probably not. There are two reasons for this. First, Measure 50, passed in Oregon in 1997, has…
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Housecalls Are No Longer a Thing of the Past

If you know what a housecall is, you've dated yourself. If your doctor has ever made a housecall to you, you've really dated yourself. Or maybe not, as housecalls are staging a comeback – recent data shows they can save serious healthcare dollars…
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Portland Loves Coworking

Portland is already the ninth-largest market in the U.S. for coworking space, and that was before WeWork signed a lease for 30,000 more square feet on the top floor of Pioneer Place in January. The new WeWorks space in Portland joins their other…
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Downtown Parking Lot Facelift Starts With The Collective

Construction is underway for one of the first of many development projects slated for downtown surface parking lots owned by the Goodman family's Downtown Development Group. Due to open in fall of 2018, The Collective is a 15-story mixed use…
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Mind Your Tail — A Visit to Banfield Pet Hospital's New Corporate Headquarters

At a recent meeting at the new corporate headquarters of Medical Management, Inc. dba Banfield Pet Hospital ("Banfield"), I took some time to admire the beautiful spaces that mark Banfield's showcase new headquarters located in Vancouver, Washington…
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Longview Coal Terminal Follows Footsteps of Other Unsuccessful Fossil Fuel Export Proposals

Opponents of a proposed coal export terminal on the Columbia River in Longview, Washington are celebrating the State of Washington's decision to deny the developer the right to use state-owned aquatic lands. As part of its proposal to export 44…
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Five Jaw-Dropping Reasons to Read "Ear to the Ground"

Despite that headline, it's not clickbait. ONE. We are attorneys at Tonkon Torp LLP, a full service business law firm in Portland, Oregon. We have our ears to the ground as to what is going on in the real estate development community in the Pacific…
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