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PORTLAND, OR-With the belief he will get a piece of the planned $200-million mixed-use redevelopment of five blocks at the east end of the Burnside Bridge, Beam Development chief Bradley Malsin has withdrawn his formal protest related to the 1.3 million-sf project. Malsin was protesting the Portland Development Commission’s decision to hand the opportunity to Minneapolis-based Opus Northwest and its local development partner, Bruce Wood, who left Opus earlier this year and formed his own company, Foundation Real Estate Development.The Burnside Bridgehead land covers a five-block area between Northeast Second Avenue and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Burnside and Northeast Everett streets. Wood tells GlobeSt.com the business deal is this: If Foundation and Opus successfully negotiate a disposition and development deal with the PDC, Opus and Foundation will transfer back to the PDC a portion of one of the five blocks slated for redevelopment, and then Malsin would be free cut his own agreement with the PDC that is completely separate from the deal the PDC has with Opus and Wood, though Malsin’s building would be designed as part of the whole.Wood says Malsin’s piece of the project would be a portion of Block 75 in the northeast quadrant of the redevelopment area, which is also referred to as the Union Arms block. The block includes the Union Arms Building, which is not part of the planned redevelopment.It’s not yet clear how Opus’ plans might change given the one less block with which it has to work, or what Malsin plans to put on the property he could end up developing. Opus’ winning $200-million, 1.3-million-sf proposal called for 527 housing units, 120,050 sf of retail, 87,820 sf of light manufacturing space and 23,447 sf of office space. The housing units include 392 for-sale units and 135 affordable apartments. Beam’s losing $245-million, 1.7-million-sf proposal called for 267 housing units, 217,000 sf of office, 169,800 sf of light manufacturing space and 120,340 sf of retail.The saga began in early May when the PDC went against the recommendation of its evaluation committee–to choose Beam Development for the project–and chose Opus and Wood instead, saying Opus’ deep pockets and experience in large-scale projects outweighed the benefits of Malsin’s proposal. Malsin responded by filing a formal protest, alleging that PDC commissioners “failed to fully disclose” pre-existing relationships with members of the proposing teams and their subcontractors until late in the process, relationships Beam alleges “improperly favored” Opus Northwest. The protest also alleged “improper communications” between the PDC and Opus, among other things. Malsin did not return a phone call seeking comment on withdrawing the protest and getting a piece of the project. According to local sources, Malsin on Tuesday released a statement exonerating Opus of any wrongdoing related to its selection by the PDC as the best developer for the project. The release does not make mention of the fact that Malsin’s development partner for the project, Bob Walsh of Walsh Construction, has admitted breaking the rules by not getting prior authorization from the PDC before contacting one of its commissioners prior to its selection of Opus as the project developer.Said Malsin in this week’s letter to the PDC withdrawing his appeal, “My desire is to focus on working together with the PDC and Opus to bring the Burnside Bridgehead Redevelopment Project forward with the least amount of disruption.”PDC executive director Don Mazziotti tells GlobeSt.com that the next step is for the PDC to determine a process for negotiating a binding development deal with the Opus-Foundation team. In that process the PDC will learn the details of the agreement to which Wood and Malsin say they’ve agreed. “We are very happy Beam withdrew his protest (but) we were not part of the negotiations,” says Mazziotti. “We will have to sit down and figure that out.”For previous GlobeSt.com articles on this topic, click on one of the following headlines:

  • GlobeSt.com UPDATE: PDC Decides on Burnside Bridgehead Protest Procedure
  • GlobeSt.com UPDATE: While PDC Changes Protest Process, Beam and Opus Talk
  • GlobeSt.com UPDATE: Beam Protests PDC’s Selection for Burnside Bridgehead
  • City Selects Opus, Wood for Burnside Bridgehead
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