April 24—Like a newborn just weeks old, Medford is about to experience a growth spurt. The city is barely a toddler, but the analogy is apt as we emerge from two years of pandemic hibernation. The construction industry is revitalized and new housing projects are springing up everywhere you look.

In a story on today’s front page, journalist Damian Mann details plans to add 1,000 new homes over the next few years, many of them in the city centre, which has been waiting too long for people to start to live downtown in significant numbers. In addition to a 62-unit project at South Holly and Eighth Streets, motel rooms are set to become studio apartments, and the top floor of the former Palace Hotel has been proposed as the site for 50 apartments.

A large low-income apartment project is seeking federal and state funding to build 115 units on Central Avenue. The Northgate Marketplace will get new neighbors if a proposed 400-unit complex wins approval.

New housing is desperately needed to help replace what was lost in the Almeda fire and bolster the valley’s insufficient stock of rental units. But that’s not the only ongoing development.

The Rogue Valley Transportation District expects to need a fleet of 600 buses by 2040, so it’s expanding its facilities on Crater Lake Avenue and plans to create a pedestrian mall and transit center at the Rogue Valley Bus Terminal. Front Street.

A 110-room Mariott Hotel is planned for Fourth Street across from Pear Blossom Park, offering quality accommodations in the heart of downtown.

Downtown residents and Mariott guests can walk to events at the Craterian Theater, as well as The Holly, which is gearing up for the final effort to restore this historic venue.

Rogue Community College is selling its downtown main building, which has been retrofitted to be earthquake-resistant and would be a prime location for a number of new uses.

After languishing for too long, Medford is ready to embrace the future, both planning to accommodate growth and striving to encourage it. Combine that with the recovery of Phoenix and Talent, and the future looks bright.

Let the revival of Rogue Valley begin.