The Pendleton welcome sign is out to Bend developer Charlie Cushman.

There is a broad consensus in the Round-Up City of a significant shortage of affordable housing.

Studies have shown a large number of those who work in town must commute. This inhibits growth and the ability to attract new industry, as well as making it more difficult for those here to expand.

The city took action last fall to address zoning and other issues on property adjacent to Olney Cemetery to provide a location could accommodate a multi-unit complex pushing 200 units. The hope was that a developer would agree to construct affordable worker housing on the site.

All those dreams appear to have been answered. Charlie Cushman, a respected builder from Bend, has proposed an attractive 95-unit development for the site. It would be constructed in three phases. Work on the first 32 units will get under way once the final design is completed and city permits issued.

There was little opposition to the project at the city council meeting Tuesday and none from council members.

They voted unanimously to approve the project.

Cushman made a presentation prior to the meeting showing drawings of the potential project that would be built on the seven-acre site.

The main concern of those opposed to a development on the site is safety from added traffic on Tutuilla Road and worries about vandalism problems in Olney Cemetery.

The proposed development will be almost half as dense as could be built, so the potential impact from more traffic has been reduced.

The drawings also show high-quality, architecturally interesting structures that will be a wonderful addition to Pendleton.

One council member described the development as an 11 on a scale of one to 10. Another was pleased the density will mean the site is not overbuilt.

Truth is, Pendleton is very lucky to have attracted this kind of development.

Cushman is known for quality construction projects that employ local, Oregon workers.

We join the council in welcoming our Bend neighbor to our part of Eastern Oregon.

It will be fun to watch the project take shape. No doubt many families and others who want to work in Pendleton will be pleased to make their homes in such nice facilities located close to the heart of town.

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