Officials aim to halt gentrification along future Southwest rail line

A MAX train passes in front of the Orchards at Orenco affordable-housing development. Washington County generally looks to place affordable developments near public transit, but the apartments fill up quickly.

Although Washington County is more affluent than Multnomah County, it also has a severe affordable housing problem. The supply of publicly subsidized apartments is so limited, the most recent project to be completed, the second phase of the Orchards at Orenco, was full before it opened.

Despite that, county officials and affordable housing advocates recently agreed to delay asking voters to approve an affordable housing levy. A poll conducted for the county showed it had little chance of passing.