Portland, OR

Thursday in Portland: University of Oregon relocating campus in Old Town to NE Portland

Emily Scarvie

Photo by(Tom Hauck/Getty Images)

(PORTLAND, Ore.) Hello Portlanders! It's Thursday, Jan. 12 - Here's your daily round up of all the news happening in the City of Roses.

1. University of Oregon relocating campus in Old Town to NE Portland

The University of Oregon is relocating its campus in Portland’s Old Town neighborhood to the now-defunct Concordia University campus in northeast Portland. The transition to the new campus will begin this summer, with all UO Portland programs expected to take place there by the fall of 2024.

The university said Tuesday that it had begun moving students and staff to the new campus and renovating academic spaces. The general contractor will be working with architectural firms to renovate educational spaces while architects draw up designs for each building.

“We are excited to have selected the architecture firms and a construction manager who will oversee the design and renovations of several important buildings and spaces on the new campus,” Jane Gordon, vice president for UO Portland, said in a news release.

The northeast Portland campus will be home to the university’s Ballmer Institute for Children’s Behavioral Health, which was launched in 2022.

2. New Airbnb program allows Portlanders to rent out apartments

Renting out a house or room on short-term rental sites has typically been limited to property owners, but a new program from Airbnb will give some Portland apartment renters the same opportunity. “Airbnb-Friendly Apartments,” a new program, will allow certain renters in Portland and around 30 other cities to become part-time hosts to Airbnb guests.

“Historically, renters have not had the ability to host like homeowners to keep up with the rise in cost of living and monetize their most expensive asset,” said Jessie Stein, who helped create the program.

According to Stein, Airbnb has partnered with more than 175 apartment buildings around the country, including three in Portland. Participating residents at the Indigo, Sawbuck and Enso buildings will be able to rent out their units on Airbnb for up to seven nights per month, essentially short-term subletting their apartments.

3. Salem man sentenced to 26 years for drunk driving into homeless camp, killing 4

On Wednesday, a 25-year-old Salem man was sentenced to nearly 26 years in prison after driving drunk into a homeless encampment in downtown Salem in March, killing four residents of the camp and seriously injuring two others. According to the Marion County District Attorney’s Office, tests showed marijuana in Enrique Rodriguez Jr.’s system, and his blood alcohol level was .22%. His driver’s license was suspended at the time.

Four people, 24-year-old Jowand Beck, 21-year-old Luke Kagey, 54-year-old Joseph Posada and 29-year-old Rochelle Zamacona, were killed when Rodriquez drove his Nissan 300ZX into their encampment. Two others, 43-year-old Derrick Hart and 28-year-old Savannah Miller, were seriously injured.

Rodriquez pleaded guilty to 11 charges in November, including four counts of first-degree manslaughter, two counts of second-degree assault, driving under the influence, reckless driving and three counts of reckless endangerment.

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