Portland taxpayer dollars to be invested in brewery

The Portland Development Commission (PDC) is planning to make a $1 million investment to help open a brewpub in the Lents neighborhood of Southeast Portland. It expects to get $450,000 in loans paid back.

The new brewpub is set to go into the now vacant building along Southeast 92nd Avenue near Foster. It used to be Ararat Bakery before it closed.

PDC spokesman Shawn Uhlman said the city would put money into building improvements no matter what type of business rents the space, but the city feels a family-friendly brewpub is the right fit.

"This is a key asset the community has identified as something they want to see there," Uhlman said. "These are types of businesses that don't turn neighborhoods around all by themselves, but they are key pieces and they build the community."

The city has already invested close to $100 million since 1998 into the Lents neighborhood as part of the Urban Renewal program.

Uhlman said this continues those efforts but it doesn't complete them.

"We need to focus a lot more of the energy that has been occurring in other parts of town," Uhlman said. "We're trying to see that transition to the east, and it's certainly goal of the mayor and absolutely a goal of the PDC to see activity and success really transfer out to the east side of Portland."