Danya Peter feltzin, 38 Portland Oregon
From Odessa to New York, Portland Oregon Sustainable Development Consultant, Danya Feltzin looks at the History that lit his path.
Its interested how your life can be guided by major historical events. If it wasn’t for World War II, Danya Feltzin wouldn’t be where he is today. His great grandfather Joseph Feltzin, a Hebrew, fled the Nazi regime. Taking his family of 9 on a treacherous journey from the Odessa, Ukraine to New York City. Joseph a wealthy landowner in Odessa gave up all of his possessions to smuggle his family to safety, the voyage cost them the lives of 5 of his children.
Once in New York, Joseph used his knowledge of engineering to get him into development. To this day there are still brownstones standing in Manhattan that Joseph Feltzin built. Joseph’s tenacity for real estate and development rubbed off on his two oldest sons, Saul and Morris. These two boys had been fighting for the American dream since they first set foot in the country. At 5 years old Morris helped his older brother sell newspapers on the corner of a busy New York street. By the time Morris was 9 he and his brother had saved up enough money to buy a Model A panel van. Barely able to see over the steering wheel Morris had a delivery business were they serviced the lower east side.
By the time Danya was born his grandfather Morris had become a successful developer and had several large condo projects in Miami. One of which was where Danya grew up and learned the ins and outs of Development and Property Management.
Danya’s other grandfather was an architect, so his youth was full of buildings. Both grandfathers served in the Military, and pushed for Danya to do his duty for his country. After training with the British and Austrailian SAS and graduating from the Canungra Jungle Warfare Academy, Danya ended up back in Hawaii. Danya studied Resort Management at the University of Hawaii and worked at Hilton International’s flagship resort the 22 acre 3000+ room resort is the heart of Waikiki.
Again a major historical event changed the path for Danya Feltzin, September 11th 2001 shifted the economy in Hawaii. After consulting with old Family Friends, he was offered a roll helping run a private equity group poised in subdivision development in the urban sprawl of Southern California and Arizona. Danya spent the next 9 years helping build a divers portfolio that extended from projects in Mexico to India.
At this point Danya had become a family man and choose Portland Oregon, his old stomping grounds as his new home base. He teamed up with a top National management agency and took on the development of Oregon’s first large scale micro unit project, right in the heart of Oregon’s most prestigious neighborhood, the Pearl District. Over the next 5 years Danya made a name for himself in the Portland Real Estate community, managing and consulting on dozens of projects. For the last couple years he has been working with sustainable front runner SolTerra, who’s all LEED Platinum portfolio boasts some of the most forward thinking mixed use projects in the Pacific Northwest. One of these projects won the US Green Building Council’s Project of the Year.
We sat down with Danya to see what was his take on the state of the development market in the Pacific Northwest.
“I currently work in Seattle and Portland, you would think that their proximity to each other would make for similar markets, but both cities are very different. Portland has a housing crisis, but I feel so much Class A product has hit the market in the inner city we are seeing very slow absorption rates. This is making it difficult for a lot of developers to get their permanent financing on their projects. With the up coming inclusionary zoning requirements, many developers are either scrambling to get their projects out of the ground before the dead line or they are putting everything on hold. The latter is only going to exacerbate the housing shortage, and raise rates, basically doing the opposite of what the measure is trying to fix. This all on top of Tina Kotek’s push for rent control and the push to remove no cause notices has made many developers think twice before starting up a new project in Portland.
On the other side of this is Seattle, one of the fastest growing cities in America. There are more cranes in Seattle right now then there are in New York and San Francisco combined. With the growth of Amazon and Microsoft, the city can’t build fast enough to keep up. Seattle is a hot market, the difficulty there is getting a decent piece of land without giving up your first born.“
Danya has recently been involved with several high profile projects in Seattle trendy Capitol Hill neighborhood.