Portland developer shifts apartments to condos, signals upscale rentals cooling

The developer behind a 63-unit housing project in Portland has changed course, deciding to sell the units as condominiums rather than rent them as apartments.

Vincent Veroneau, president and chief executive officer of J.B. Brown Sons, said the decision to redirect the project at High and York streets was made mostly because other apartment projects have absorbed some of the pent-up demand.

“We sort of felt the market-rate housing has been somewhat satisfied with other projects,” Veroneau said.

It’s the latest example of aborted plans to add rental housing units in Portland, and suggests the city’s rental construction boom may be slowing after an infusion of apartments aimed mostly at the high end of the market.

Portland leaders have been eager to add rental housing after a shortage of units led to rapid rises in rents and historically low vacancies that forced some people to leave the city. The average rent for a

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