About the MP2H project

Purpose, background, community engagement, steps and timeline, and contact information for the MP2H project.
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Project purpose

The Montgomery Park to Hollywood Transit and Land Use Development (MP2H) Study explores opportunities to create an equitable development plan for potential transit-oriented districts in NW Portland (extending to Montgomery Park), as well as NE Portland (extending to the Hollywood District). Major transit investments can be used to shape future growth of the Central City and surrounding areas.

What is “equitable development”?

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), equitable development is “an approach for meeting the needs of underserved communities through policies and programs that reduce disparities while fostering places that are healthy and vibrant. It is increasingly considered an effective placed-based action for creating strong and livable communities.”

The MP2H Study considers land use and urban design options, affordable housing incentives and economic development opportunities, as well as possible public benefits with transit-oriented development scenarios and the extension of the Portland Streetcar into an area. The project also considers how such opportunities could support the City’s racial equity, climate justice, employment and housing goals. A Federal Transit Administration (FTA) grant helped fund the work.

The project looks at two distinct study areas:

  • Northwest Portland: Explore extending streetcar transit service to the Montgomery Park area in NW Portland and consider options for land use and transportation changes to support a new climate-friendly and transit-oriented neighborhood. This area is being considered for nearer term transit investment and land use changes. See the Montgomery Park Area Plan Proposed Draft for more information related to the Northwest study area.
  • Northeast Portland: Explore the land use implications of different transit alignments to the Hollywood District. This preliminary assessment looked at land uses along three alternate routes for streetcar service. This element of the MP2H Study has concluded; no land use changes or streetcar transit investments are proposed or planned at this time. However, this assessment work resulted in the following reports:
Map with outline of study area around the Montgomery Park and surrounding area in NW Portland
MP2H study map showing potential westside and eastside alignment options and geographies to be studied.

Project background

In 2001, Portland launched the country’s first modern-era streetcar system to serve Downtown Portland, Northwest Portland, and the developing Pearl district. The streetcar system was expanded in the mid-2000s to serve new development in the emerging South Waterfront district and, later, the Lloyd Center and Central Eastside areas.

The results are visible every day as thousands of Portlanders and visitors travel around the Central City, which is complete with commercial and office spaces, market-rate apartments and condos, as well as the highest concentration of affordable housing in the city.

The 2009 Portland Streetcar System Concept Plan took a citywide view of system expansion. A future line to Montgomery Park (the city’s second largest office complex) and a line to the Hollywood Town Center were among several lines identified in the report. During the most recent 2035 Comprehensive Plan and Transportation System Plan process, these two lines were prioritized for streetcar planning and implementation.

Northwest Study Area- In 2018, Portland City Council funded a preliminary Northwest Portland Streetcar Extension and Land Use Alternatives Analysis, finalized in September 2019, to study an extension of streetcar to Montgomery Park.

That analysis identified a potential new alignment along NW Wilson and NW York streets, through an area that currently includes industrial land uses. It also included a Preliminary Racial Equity Analysis of NW Streetcar Expansion focused on the transit and land use changes being considered.

The equity analysis explored the employment/jobs and housing implications of land use scenarios from industrial to mixed use. The current MPAP Proposed Draftconsidered the results of the preliminary equity analysis — as well as feedback heard during the MP2H effort — in its approach to land use, transportation, and public benefits.

Northeast Study Area - The 2035 Comprehensive Plan also updated land use and zoning designations in and around the Hollywood Town Center, as well as along key corridors, including NE Sandy and NE Broadway. Three potential streetcar alignment corridors were evaluated: NE Broadway; NE Sandy Boulevard; and NE Irving/NE Sandy. The MP2H study conducted a preliminary urban design and economic analysis to explore a preferred streetcar/transit alignment corridor for future planning and refinement.

Community engagement

Project staff completed a Community Engagement Plan for the MP2H Strategy in December 2019. It called for engaging with local advisory bodies (such as neighborhood and business associations) to ensure institutional, community, and private sector input.

Another effort engaged with underserved communities living or working in and around the study areas to learn about their needs, concerns, and aspirations, and how development along the project corridors might benefit them. Small grants or contracts were offered to community-based organizations to facilitate engagement with underserved communities.

Project steps and timeline

2019 – Initial outreach and background

  • Initial public engagement – neighborhood and business groups, other organizations
  • Existing conditions – land use and transportation

2020 – Develop and analyze scenarios and alternatives

  • Ongoing public engagement
  • Outreach with partner community-based organizations
  • Form a Project Working Group (PWG) for the northwest study area
  • Consider alternative development scenarios for northwest study area
  • Evaluate alignment alternatives for northeast study area

2021 – Select and refine preferred alternatives

  • Complete urban design concepts for northwest and northeast study areas.
  • Complete economic evaluations for northwest and northeast study areas.
  • Consider housing and community equitable development needs.
  • Develop preferred land use and transportation proposals for the northwest study area.

2022 – Discussion Draft Plan for the Northwest study area

  • Publish Discussion Draft Plan for Northwest study area, December 2021
  • Public review and comments on Discussion Draft Plan for Northwest area through April 2022
  • Consider public comments and further analysis to refine Discussion Draft Plan

2023-24 – Refine plans and publish Proposed Draft Plan for Northwest area

  • Continue plan evaluation and refinements, including creation of additional of urban design elements and character statement, as well as development of public benefits proposal
  • Publish Proposed Draft Plan for Northwest (expected late 2023/winter 2024)
  • Design Commission public hearings (expected winter 2024)
  • Planning Commission public hearings (expected winter 2024)
  • Publish Recommended Draft Plan for Northwest (tentative spring 2024)
  • Portland City Council public hearings (tentative spring/summer 2024)