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Implementation of the Plan

Computer rendering of streetscape with streetcar and new mixed use buildings
The Montgomery Park Area Plan proposes a future vision and long-range land use direction for the area.
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Proposed changes

The Montgomery Park Area Plan will be implemented through a number of regulatory and nonregulatory tools, including:

  • Comprehensive Plan Map amendments
  • Zoning Map amendments
  • Employment and Industrial Districts Map 6.1 amendments
  • Northwest District Town Center boundary amendments
  • Zoning Code changes that create a new plan district
  • A Design Character Statement for the area
  • Recommended Transportation Projects and System Plan Elements
  • A Public Benefits Agreement

Comprehensive Plan Map amendments

The 2035 Comprehensive Plan Map depicts the long-term vision of how and where the city will accommodate population and job growth. The land use designations on this map are tied to policy statements in the Comprehensive Plan, and they specify, by site, where various land uses can be located.

The Proposed Comprehensive Plan Map for the MPAP is shown below. Portions of the area would be changed to the Mixed Employment (ME, light purple) designation and Central Employment (EX, dark purple) designation.

Map showing changes to the Comprehensive Plan map.
Map of proposed changes to the Comprehensive Plan Map in NW industrial area. Click the map to open a PDF to view in more detail.

Zoning Map Amendments

Zoning directs how land can be used and what can be built on any given property. The zones are defined in the Portland Zoning Code, which specifies the permitted uses and intensity, as well as required standards, on any given site.

The Proposed Zoning Map for the MPAP is shown below. Portions of the area would be changed to the General Employment 1 (EG1) zone and the Central Employment zone (EX). The Design overlay zone (d) would be applied to sites zoned EX. The EX zone allows a broad mix of uses, including housing, while the EG1 zone does not allow housing. The proposed zoning also removes the Prime Industrial overlay zone (k) from properties in the plan area.

MPAP Zoning Plan Map changes
Map of proposed zoning map changes in NW industrial area. Click the map to open a PDF to view in more detail.

Industrial and Employment Districts Map, Figure 6.1

Application of the high-density Central Employment (EX) land use designation and zoning, as well as the Design overlay zone, between NW Vaughn and NW Nicolai west of Highway 30, suggests the need to remove the MPAP area from the Industrial and Employment Districts map. Figure 6.1 Industrial and Employment Districts, is proposed to be amended as shown below.

Map showing employment and industrial uses along Columbia and Willamette rivers with callout box around Montgomery Park "Detailed area of change"
Figure 6.1 Industrial and Employment Districts. Click the map to open a PDF to view in more detail.

Urban Design Framework Map

Application of the high-density Central Employment (EX) land use designation and zoning, as well as the Design overlay zone, suggest the need to incorporate the MPAP area into a town center.

Map showing dotted red line around Montgomery Park plus proposed boundary expansion that includes the NW district
The MPAP proposes to amend the 2035 Comprehensive Plan Urban Design Framework Map to reflect the expanded Northwest Town Center boundary as shown in this image. Click the map to open a PDF to view in more detail.

Zoning Code – Create New Vaughn-Nicolai Plan District

The MPAP vision for a vital mixed-use area can be achieved with the proposed zoning provisions to augment the regulations of the base zones. The new zoning will allow the development of an urban, transit-oriented, mixed-use development pattern, featuring high-density housing, high-intensity employment and institutional uses, as well as commercial retail, services and offices. These changes will also promote or provide for public benefits in the form of affordable housing, affordable commercial space, and incentives (offsets) for public open space.

The proposed Zoning Code changes include a new “Vaughn-Nicolai Plan District” (proposed zoning code chapter 33.590) for the area between NW Vaughn and NW Nicolai streets, west of Highway 30. See below for a summary of the Plan District provisions.

In addition, the plan proposes amendments to the boundaries and related provisions of the Guild’s Lake Plan District (chapter 33.531) Subdistrict B (Map 531-1, Map 531-2), and Northwest Plan District (chapter 33.562) streetcar regulations map (Map 562-7). See Volume 2: Zoning Code Amendments for additional details.

Summary of Plan District Provisions/Regulations 

The following provisions for development allowances and limitations would be applied in the Vaughn-Nicolai Plan District in the Portland Zoning Code. 

Use prohibitions. Quick Vehicle Servicing; Self-Service Storage; Commercial Outdoor Recreation; and Agriculture. 

Use size limitations. Retail Sales and Service.

Required uses. Nonresidential uses are proposed to be required on sites within the plan district. Specific active uses will also be required on a portion of the ground floor of buildings on NW Wilson Street near the streetcar alignment. 

Floor area. Specific floor area ratios (FAR) are proposed for Subdistricts in the area to leverage public benefits. In the area near the proposed streetcar, a minimum FAR is proposed to ensure transit-oriented and supportive developments. 

Floor area transfers. Floor area transfers may occur in the EX zone to sites in Subdistrict B. Floor area on sites designated for publicly accessible open area may be transferred to other subdistricts.

Height limits. A base height limit of 65 ft is proposed for much of the area. A “step-down” height of 45 ft is proposed adjacent to NW Vaughn Street. Additional height in the plan district (85–120 ft) is allowed through bonus options.

Bonus provisions in the EX and EG zones. The Plan proposed four bonuses:

  • Inclusionary Housing Bonus. Development that triggers compliance with inclusionary housing provisions, or voluntarily complies, would be allowed additional floor area. The maximum height for buildings using this provision varies by subdistrict. 
  • Additional Affordable Housing Bonus. In the EX zone, this bonus provides additional floor area when a higher percentage of affordable units are provided. For key subareas, this provision may be superseded when a public benefits agreement exists and required affordable housing is built.
  • Employment Bonus. In some subdistricts, this bonus provides additional floor area when a use in key employment categories is provided onsite.
  • Service Adequacy Bonus. In subdistrict B, additional floor area in excess of 5:1 is allowed only when adequacy of public services is demonstrated.

Residential Density. A minimum density of one unit per 500 sq ft of site area is proposed for developments with residential uses to ensure a minimum intensity of development in the area. 

Windows. Enhanced standards for ground floor window coverage are proposed for buildings along the streetcar alignment. In addition, windows above the ground floor are required near the streetcar alignment.

Active Use Areas. Buildings near the streetcar alignment will be required to accommodate active uses at the ground floor. Surface parking lots will be prohibited in areas near the streetcar alignment.

Urban Green Features. Green elements should be integrated into the urban environment to help soften the effects of built and paved areas, cool the air temperature, intercept rainfall, and reduce stormwater runoff by providing unpaved permeable surface. A range of options are provided to address this area’s urban development patterns and characteristics.

Outdoor Areas. Residential uses will be required to provide onsite outdoor areas that benefit the residents of new development. Exceptions or alternatives are included for proposals that consolidate their required outdoor areas into a larger public park or other publicly accessible open areas.

Transportation Demand Management. Transportation Demand Management (TDM) provisions will be applied in this area. This will require developments adding 10 or more units to develop a plan or participate in the standard TDM program, which requires transit passes for new residents.

Parking. Parking ratios that limit the amount of onsite parking are proposed for this transit-oriented district. In the area near the streetcar alignment, surface parking is not allowed. In other parts of the plan district area, the number of spaces allowed as surface parking will be limited.

Zoning Code Amendments 

The MPAP transportation element includes extension of the Portland Streetcar on NW 23rd Ave north of NW Northrup St. This area is subject to the Northwest Plan District (33.562), which includes additional zoning regulations that apply to sites near streetcar alignments. The plan district Map 562-7 with streetcar alignments will be amended to show the new alignment proposed on NW 23rd Ave. As a result, existing provisions/regulations regarding development near a streetcar alignment will apply to subject properties within 200 ft of the alignment. These regulations include requirements for active ground floor uses, prohibitions on drive-through facilities and enhanced requirements for windows above the ground floor. See Volume 2for details.

Montgomery Park Area Character Statement

The Plan includes a new Montgomery Park Area Character Statement. The statement reflects the community’s perspectives on the area’s history and their aspirations, which are translated into design guidance for future development projects subject to Design Review. Read the proposed Montgomery Park Area Character Statement and other related details in Volume 2.

Transportation Projects

The Plan includes a Montgomery Park Transportation Plan (Volume 3) to support the transition of the plan area to a comfortable, accessible and transit-oriented mixed-use district. The Transportation Plan covers the existing context, issues, and opportunities in the area. It also recommends a series of updates to the Transportation System Plan, a component of the Comprehensive Plan that is updated every five years. These recommendations include a Master Street Plan as well as classification updates for pedestrian, bicycle, transit, freight, emergency, and traffic classification in the area.

The plan also details specific pedestrian, bicycle, and transit system investment recommendations, including the extension of the Portland Streetcar to Montgomery Park to support the new district. 

Public Benefits Agreement

Another element of implementation is an agreement between the City and the two largest property owners in the plan area for a defined set of public benefits. This agreement is intended to be adopted by City Council with the MPAP or with the funding mechanism for transit and street improvements. The associated benefits will include elements that complement or supersede certain public benefits (such as increased amounts of affordable housing, publicly accessible parks/plazas, and affordable commercial space) achieved through proposed Vaughn-Nicolai Plan District zoning regulations. 

The following key provisions are part of a draft proposed public benefits package. These are discussed further in Volume 1 and are defined in the Public Benefits Terms Sheet included in Volume 5 as an appendix. The terms sheet will be developed later into a Public Benefits Agreement for City Council consideration.

Streetcar funding and related details such as right-of-way dedications, creation of a Local Improvement District and other design, construction and partnership commitments.

Middle wage jobs target of 800 required onsite within 10 years. A middle-wage job is defined as one that does not require a four-year college degree or more to qualify, with a starting salary of more than 50 percent of the area median income for a family of four.

Up-front and onsite affordable housing at a minimum of 200 units at 60 percent median family income (MFI) within seven years and before other market-rate housing.

Support for wealth creation for priority underserved communities with affordable commercial space opportunities in the plan area. 

Commemoration of York, an enslaved member of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, in a significant publicly accessible location within future development or MPAP area.

Public open area or park within a central location in the MPAP area. 

Learn more

Read more about the MP2H – NW Plan Proposed Draft


Montgomery Park to Hollywood Project Staff

A project of Planning & Sustainability and Transportation