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December 2019 BPS Planning Project Updates

News article

A monthly snapshot of land use planning work going on in your neighborhoods. Please visit the project website and contact project staff with any questions.


Useful resources

Residential Infill Project (RIP)

What: Updating the rules that shape Portland’s residential neighborhoods, so more people can live in them, while limiting the construction of very large new houses

Status: Written testimony to City Council is now being accepted through the Map App testimony submitter.

You can alternatively send testimony through the mail to the following address:

City Council
Residential Infill Project Testimony
1221 SW Fourth Avenue, Room 130
Portland, OR 97204

Be sure to include “Residential Infill Project Testimony” so it gets routed to the right place. Testimony must be received by the date of the hearing.

The Residential Infill Project Recommended Draft is available online for review. This draft serves as the Planning and Sustainability Commission’s recommendation to City Council, which will hold a public hearing on the proposals in Jan. 2020, followed by council deliberations, amendments and a decision. You can view the zoning proposals for individual properties by using the project Map App. You can also sign up to receive project email updates by filling out this quick form.

The Residential Infill Project is being presented to City Council as part of a broader Housing Opportunities Initiative (HOI), which includes the Better Housing by Design project and a new Anti-Displacement Action Plan effort. In preparation for subsequent public hearings, staff briefed City Council on all three projects on Sept. 3.

Residential Infill Project staff have analyzed two recently passed state bills to determine their effect on the PSC’s recommendation and ensure that RIP is in alignment:

HB2001 requires cities to allow for certain types of middle housing (duplexes, triplexes, fourplexes and cottage clusters) in single-dwelling zones by June 2022. While RIP meets many of the bill’s requirements, it does not include proposals for middle housing in R10 and R20 zones. These zones, along with new standards for cottage clusters, will be addressed in a follow-up project ahead of the bill’s June 2022 effective date.

SB534 requires cities to allow houses on historically platted lots, including lots that are smaller than the minimum lot size for the zone. Development allowances are subject to certain limits relating to infrastructure, natural resources and land hazards. This bill is effective on March 1, 2020.

Next opportunity to engage: City Council held a work session on the RIP proposals on Dec. 11 at 1:30 p.m. Public hearings are scheduled for Jan. 15 at 2 p.m. and 16 at 5 p.m. at City Council Chambers. Please confirm the time and location by checking the Council calendar.

Contact: Morgan Tracy, 503-823-6879,

Better Housing by Design (BHD)

What: Updating rules to expand housing options in Portland’s multi-dwelling zones and to improve the design and livability of new development

Status: After holding public hearings on the Better Housing by Design Recommended Draft on Oct. 2 and Nov. 6 and voting on amendments to the Recommended Draft on Nov. 21, 2019, City Council voted to adopt the Better Housing by Design ordinance on December 18. At the same meeting, they also adopted the Connected Centers Street Plan for East Portland.

The Better Housing by Design As Amended documents, incorporating amendments passed by City Council, are available online. You can view the multi-dwelling zoning proposed for individual properties using the project Map App.

Next opportunity to engage: The public can review and listen to Council’s final vote on the Better Housing by Design and the resolution on PBOT’s Connected Centers Street Plan by watching the video at:

Contact: Bill Cunningham, 503-823-4203,

River Plan / South Reach

What: Developing an updated vision and implementing maps, code and action items for the southern part of the Willamette River as well as Natural Resources and Scenic Resources protection plans

Status: Project staff released a Discussion Draft for public review in October. Review the draft.

Next opportunity to engage: Public comments are due to project staff on the River Plan/South Reach Discussion Draft by Nov. 27. A public meeting on riverfront design standards is scheduled for Dec. 3, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. at the Center for Equity and Inclusion, 5757 SW Macadam Avenue, available by TriMet bus #35.

Contact: Jeff Caudill, 503-823-4572,

Environmental Overlay Zone Map Correction Project

What: Correcting the location of environmental overlay zones to better align with rivers, streams, wetlands, floodplains, forests, steep slopes and wildlife habitat

Status: The Discussion Draft and updated draft ezones were released for public review on Nov. 15. Comments are due on Jan. 31, 2020.  Letters were sent to all affected properties.  

Next opportunity to engage: Everyone is invited to an open house on Jan. 8, 4:30 p.m., at Taborspace. The Planning and Sustainability Commission will hold public hearings in Spring 2020. or 503-823-4225

Expanding Opportunities for Affordable Housing

What: Supporting community-based organizations that want to use their property to develop affordable housing. Supported by a Community Planning grant from Metro, the project is also identifying development barriers and is proposing zoning code changes to the Conditional Use review process for the development of housing on conditional use sites.

Status: The Proposed Draft of zoning code changes and Comprehensive Plan map and zoning map changes will be released Jan. 2, 2020. Comments can be made through Feb. 11, when there will be a public hearing before the Planning and Sustainability Commission. Additionally, three community organizations have received consulting services to develop concepts for affordable housing development on their properties. A public forum to present those concepts will be held in late January.

Next opportunity to engage: Public comment on the Proposed Draft opens Jan. 2. Testimony can be made through the Map App, using the button Expanding Opportunities for AH, or mailed to:

Planning and Sustainability Commission
1900 SW 4th Ave. Suite 7100, Portland OR 97201.

There will be a public hearing on Feb. 11 at 12:30 p.m. before the Planning and Sustainability Commission. The project is tentatively scheduled to be heard before City Council on March 26 and/or April 1, 2020.

Contact: Nan Stark, 503-823-3986,

Historic Resources Code Project

What: Updating the zoning code to change how the City identifies, designates and protects historic resources

Status: Staff are incorporating public feedback received in spring into a revised Proposed Draft of possible zoning code changes.

Next opportunity to engage: The Proposed Draft will be released in Feb. 2020. A public hearing before the Planning and Sustainability Commission is tentatively scheduled for March 24, 2020.

Contact: Brandon Spencer-Hartle, 503-823-4641,

Design Overlay Zone Amendments Project (DOZA)

What: Updating and improving both the process and tools used within the design overlay zone

Status: Staff released the Proposed Draft on Sept. 16, 2019, and held a joint public hearing on Oct. 22 with the Planning and Sustainability Commission and the Design Commission. Opportunities for submitting public testimony ended on Nov. 15, 2019.

Next opportunity to engage: The two commissions will continue to hold work sessions on the staff proposal into the first two months of 2020 before making their recommendations. The Recommended Draft is anticipated to be released in Spring 2020, with a City Council hearing to follow.

Contact: Phil Nameny, 503-823-7709,

West Portland Town Center Plan

What: Creating a vision and identifying actions to transition “the Crossroads” area into a healthy, inclusive and complete community. Work will cover housing and displacement, improved health and prosperity for low-income residents, transportation and stormwater improvements, economic development, zoning changes and urban design.

Status: Staff and consultants continue to work on integrating ideas and feedback received during the Nov. 9 event. A set of existing conditions memos covering health equity, urban form and demographics are also available online. A Community Advisory Group (CAG) meets every other month to guide development of the plan.

Next opportunity to engage: A weekday evening open house to share two to three draft growth concept maps is being planned for late February. WPTC staff will also be at Crestwood Neighborhood Association on Wednesday, Jan. 8. The next CAG meeting is Monday, Feb. 3. CAG meetings are open to the public and past materials are available online.  

Contact: Joan Frederiksen, 503-823-3111,

SW Naito Pkwy Main Street Project

This effort is part of BPS’ Southwest Corridor Inclusive Communities Project.

What: The Bureaus of Transportation (PBOT) and Planning and Sustainability (BPS) are refining land use, circulation and urban design along SW Naito and around the Ross Island Bridgehead in South Portland.

Status: First community kick-off meeting was Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2019, at National University of Natural Medicine. Summary notes will be posted on project website.

Next opportunity to engage: Staff will present design options for SW Naito and the opportunity sites created by the Ross Island Bridgehead realignment at a follow-up open house, tentatively scheduled for February 2020.

Contact: Julia Gisler, 503-823-7624,

South Portland Historic District Design Guidelines

What: New approval criteria for alterations, additions and new construction in the South Portland Historic District

Status: A Community Advisory Group (CAG) is meeting monthly to guide development of the draft approval criteria.

Next opportunity to engage: CAG meetings are open to the public, with time reserved for public comments at every meeting.

Contact: Brandon Spencer-Hartle, 503-823-4641,

Parkrose-Argay Development Study

What: Exploring opportunities to create a complete and connected neighborhood on the 30-acre site at NE 122nd Avenue and NE Shaver Street

Status: Portland City Council held a hearing and adopted a resolution to accept the Parkrose-Argay Development Study: Final Report and Implementation Partnership Opportunities Memo on Dec. 11, 2019. The Council action also directed BPS to work with the property owners on next steps, if and when they choose to initiate development and if they wish to pursue a public-private partnership. 

Next opportunity to engage: No further steps are defined at this time. Any future public-private partnership related to development would require further public hearings and City Council actions.

Contact: Barry Manning, 503-823-7965,

Building Healthy Connected Communities Along the Division Transit Corridor

What: Opportunities and actions to intentionally grow more complete communities along the Division Transit Corridor and throughout East Portland

Status: The final report was released on Aug. 15, 2019. It focuses on three areas along the project alignment between SE 76th and the Gresham city limits near SE 174th: the Jade District, Division Midway and 162nd Avenue.

Next opportunity to engage: City Council will hold a public hearing on Dec. 19, 2019, at 2:45 p.m. time certain.

Contact: Marty Stockton, 503-823-2041,

Bicycle Parking Project

What: Updating the regulations for bicycle parking in new development

Status: City Council held a public hearing on the on Nov. 13 on the Recommended Draft and a list of potential amendments. They voted to adopt the amendments on Dec.4.

Next opportunity to engage: No more opportunities to engage. The new regulations are adopted and will go into effect on March 1, 2020.

Contact: Sarah Figliozzi (PBOT), 503-823-0805 or Phil Nameny (BPS), 503-823-7709;

Deconstruction Ordinance Amendments

What: City Council adoptsproposed amendments to the existing deconstruction ordinance (Portland City Code Chapter 17.106)

Status: A proposed amendment to expand the deconstruction ordinance to cover houses and duplexes built in or before 1940 was approved by City Council on Nov. 13. The expanded ordinance will go into effect Jan. 20, 2020.  The current ordinance requires deconstruction for permits to demolish houses and duplexes built in or before 1916. 

Next opportunity to engage:None; amendments have been adopted.

Contact: Shawn Wood, 503-823-5468,

Neighborhood Contact Code Update

What: Improving how developers inform the public about new development

Status: Changes to the Neighborhood Contact requirements were adopted in May 2019, and  the new policy went into effect on Dec. 2, 2019. All permits and land use reviews that are submitted to the Bureau of Development Services after this date will have to meet the new neighborhood contact requirements. The public can view all projects that are going through the new neighborhood contact process at the following map:

Montgomery Park to Hollywood Transit and Land Use Development Strategy

What: Exploring options for a successful land use and transit system, including potential streetcar, linking Montgomery Park in NW Portland to the Hollywood Town Center. The project is a joint effort between the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) and the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT).

Status: With a grant from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), this project is now in start-up phase. The project will assess land use and transportation issues and options, including affordable housing, economic development and business stabilization opportunities associated with potential transit investments. A consultant team will be selected to assist with land use and transportation planning elements. A Phase 1 study, Northwest Portland Streetcar Extension & Land Use Alternatives Analysis, explored preliminary issues and options for the NW Portland component of the project in 2018-19. 

Next opportunity to engage: Staff is engaging area neighborhood and business groups and exploring methods to engage other communities. A public engagement plan is being drafted to define the full scope of community engagement.

Contact: Barry Manning (BPS), 503-823-7965, or Kate Drennan (PBOT), 503-823-4599,

Fossil Fuel Terminal Zoning Project

What:Restrict the development and expansion of bulk fossil fuel terminals. These Zoning Code amendments were adopted by the Portland City Council on Dec. 14, 2016. That ordinance was appealed to the Oregon Supreme Court and is now back before the Portland City Council.

Status: City Council held a public hearing on Nov. 20, 2019, to reconsider the Fossil Fuel Terminal Zoning amendments. The opportunity to submit testimony is closed.

Next opportunity to engage: City Council decision on Dec. 18, 2019, at 3 p.m.

Contact: Tom Armstrong, 503-823-3527,