June 2024 – Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) Project Updates

News Article
A monthly snapshot of BPS's active land use planning work going on across the city of Portland. See the project updates below for more details, and to find contact information for the City staff working on specific projects. Subscribe to get email notifications when these updates are posted.
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June 2024 highlights

  • Montgomery Park Area Plan (MPAP) series of work sessions scheduled with Planning and Design Commissions in June. Read more.
  • Housing Production Strategy discussed at Planning Commission work session on June 11. Read more.
  • Regulatory Improvement Code Amendment Package 10 (RICAP 10) heads back to City Council for final vote on Thursday, June 13 at 2:45 p.m. Read more.

Housing Needs Analysis (HNA) and Housing Production Strategy (HPS)

What: The Housing Needs Analysis analyzed the status of Portland’s housing supply, housing affordability issues, and the City's ability to meet projected housing demand through 2045. The Housing Production Strategy addresses how Portland will accommodate future population growth with strategies that support the development of needed housing. These actions will consider impacts on low-income households, communities of color, people with disabilities, and other state and federally protected classes.

Status: BPS is leading the development of a Housing Production Strategy (HPS) with other City bureaus and the community. The HPS will identify strategies the City can take over the next five years to support needed housing development. The HPS Discussion Draft is available for public review. Written public comments were accepted until June 11 at noon. The Planning Commission held a work session on the HPS Discussion Draft on June 11.

Next opportunity to engage: None currently. Check the project website for updates on the draft plan and upcoming events. Those interested can sign up for email updates.

Land Division Code Update

What: The Land Division Code Update aims to encourage new housing development by streamlining the review of residential land divisions and reducing regulatory barriers and uncertainty in the application process, while continuing to provide benefits to the community.

Status: On April 23, the Planning Commission voted to recommend the Proposed Draft with seven technical clarifying amendments and one more substantive change. The substantive change expanded the ability for land divisions located in multi-dwelling zones to be eligible to meet the transportation impact standards as opposed to having to meet criteria. Staff will publish a Recommended Draft incorporating the Planning Commission amendments in June.

Next opportunity to engage: A City Council hearing is tentatively scheduled for July 17. Community members will be able to testify in writing and in person at the public hearing. Check the project website for updates or if interested sign up for email updates.

Montgomery Park Area Plan (MPAP) and Montgomery Park to Hollywood Transit and Land Use Development Study (MP2H)

What: The Montgomery Park Area Plan is an outcome of the MP2H Strategy, a joint effort between BPS and the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) to explore options for a successful land use and transit system, including potential future streetcar links to Montgomery Park in NW Portland and Hollywood Town Center in NE Portland. The study considers affordable housing, as well as economic development and business stabilization opportunities associated with potential transit investments, including the possible extension of the Portland Streetcar. While a proposed plan for the Northwest area is moving forward, study of the Northeast area has concluded.

Status: The Proposed Draft of the MPAP was considered by the Planning Commission and Design Commission, which held a joint public hearing on May 21. The plan proposes land use and transportation changes to establish a new transit-oriented district in northwest Portland west of Highway 30, between NW Vaughn and NW Nicolai Streets. The plan envisions the area as a mixed-use employment district that supports job growth and housing development. The plan proposes land use changes to promote equitable, transit-oriented development and complements a future extension of the Portland Streetcar. The changes include proposed amendments to Portland’s Comprehensive Plan map, zoning map, zoning code, and design guidance.

Next opportunity to engage: The Planning Commission has work sessions on the MPAP Proposed Draft scheduled for June 11 and June 25. The Design Commission has work sessions scheduled for June 6 and June 20. No additional public testimony will be taken at the work sessions. Later this year, the Commissions’ recommendations will be forwarded to City Council for consideration with opportunity for additional public testimony. Check the project website for updates, upcoming hearings, and to sign up for email updates.

Regulatory Improvement Code Amendment Package 10 (RICAP 10)

What: The RICAP packages are an ongoing series of minor technical updates, clarifications, and refinements to Portland’s zoning regulations. RICAP 10 amendments include 83 items grouped into three themes: housing production, economic development, and regulatory reduction. Some items are minor policy changes, while others are technical amendments or clarifications with little policy impact. Cumulatively, the amendments support a more efficient and better functioning zoning code.

Status: On May 30, City Council held a public hearing on RICAP 10 and unanimously passed the Recommended Draft to second reading with no amendments.

Next opportunity to engage: City Council will hold the second reading and final vote on RICAP 10 on Thursday, June 13 at 2:45 p.m. Public testimony is now closed. Check the project website for updates or if interested sign up for email updates.

Ongoing projects (active projects with no updates this month)

Anti-Displacement Action Plan

What: The Anti-Displacement Action Plan (ADAP) aims to increase the resiliency of the city and our communities to deal with racial and economic disparities that contribute to displacement.

Status: A cross-bureau team of City staff continues to work internally to develop tools that better align City bureau strategies and actions to combat displacement and produce more equitable outcomes for communities. Staff is also working with the Anti-Displacement Coalition to support development of a civic leadership curriculum to identify community priorities.

Next opportunity to engage: None currently. Check the project website for updates.

Columbia Corridor-Industrial Lands Ezones Project

What: Correcting the location of environmental overlay zones (ezones) in the Columbia Corridor and other industrial areas to better align with rivers, streams, sloughs, wetlands, floodplains, forests, and wildlife habitat.

Status: Project staff have published an interactive online map of preliminary draft ezones based on the Natural Resource Inventory. The natural resource mapping is subject to onsite verification at the request of property owners, and the draft ezones mapping may change as the project progresses. Project staff will coordinate their work with the upcoming citywide Economic Opportunity Analysis to provide adequate protection for natural resources and sufficient industrial and employment land to meet future needs.

Next opportunity to engage: Project staff continue to offer free site visits by request to confirm or correct natural resource mapping. Learn more about draft wetland mapping and see if your site qualifies for a free wetland determination. Check the project website for updates and if interested sign up for email updates.

Economic Opportunities Analysis (EOA)

What: The purpose of the EOA is to analyze and forecast growth in Portland’s industrial and other business districts, then designate an adequate 20-year supply of developable land for businesses and jobs.

Status: BPS staff are working on the draft employment forecast and industrial buildable lands inventory. BPS also has received a Metro grant for an Industrial Land Readiness Study, which will identify development-ready sites suitable for target cluster industries and other industrial sectors; conduct a development feasibility analysis on a broad range of sites; and identify strategic actions to expand Portland’s development-ready supply of constrained industrial sites.

Next opportunity to engage: The draft EOA will be available for public review later in 2024. Check the project website for updates and if interested sign up for email updates.

Fossil Fuel Terminal Zoning Amendments

What: This ordinance readopts the remanded zoning code amendments that restrict bulk fossil fuel terminals to address the policies identified by the Land Use Board of Appeals (LUBA) that require additional findings.

Status: The City Council adopted the ordinance in August 2022. On Sept. 29, 2023, the LUBA denied an appeal by the Portland Business Alliance, Working Waterfront Coalition, Western States Petroleum Association, Oregon Business and Industry, and Columbia Pacific Building and Construction Trades Council. This LUBA decision was appealed to Oregon Court of Appeals, which upheld the LUBA decision to affirm the City Council’s adoption of reasonable limits on fossil fuel infrastructure. The Court of Appeals decision has not been appealed to the Oregon Supreme Court; however the ordinance has been challenged in federal court by the State of Montana, Western Energy Alliance, Pacific Propane Gas Association, Idaho Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association, and Christensen, Inc. The federal case is still pending.

Next opportunity to engage: None currently.

LGBTQ+ Historic Sites Project

What: The City of Portland’s LGBTQ+ Historic Sites Project seeks to identify, document, and preserve historic resources associated with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer+ histories.

Status: The project team is preparing a historic context statement, historic resources survey, and individual National Register of Historic Places nomination forms for properties significantly associated with LGBTQ+ history. Two National Register of Historic Places nomination forms for the Crystal Hotel and Erv Lind Field received recommendations from the Portland Historic Landmarks Commission and State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation to move forward for federal approval.

Next opportunity to engage: Other project deliverables, including an additional National Register nomination, will be available for public review in late spring 2024. Check the project website for updates.

Adopted projects (pending effective dates)

Floodplain Resilience Plan

What: The plan updated floodplain regulations throughout the city to ensure that new development in the floodplain addresses flood risk from a changing climate, does not jeopardize threatened and endangered species, and allows Portlanders to continue to obtain federally backed flood insurance.

Status: In October 2023, City Council voted unanimously to adopt zoning code amendments that reduce the impacts of future flooding on those who live or work in or near Portland’s floodplains. City Council added several key amendments to the package. Most of the requirements went into effect on March 1 and the remaining items go into effect Oct. 1. Read the full announcement.

Lower SE Rising Area Plan

What: The Lower SE Rising (LSER) Area Plan addresses the historic lack of neighborhood commercial services, diverse housing options, and infrastructure investment in the Brentwood-Darlington Neighborhood and nearby areas, including parts of the Mt Scott-Arleta, Woodstock and Lents neighborhoods. Informed by two years of community input, the plan includes zoning map changes and recommendations for transportation projects to implement the community’s aspirations for more neighborhood businesses and housing options, supported by transportation improvements, to make it easier to meet daily needs locally and help address affordability.

Status: On May 2, City Council voted unanimously to adopt the Lower SE Rising Area Plan’s land use map amendments and a directive to include the plan’s transportation projects in the in next update to the Transportation System Plan. The land use changes expand zoning for commercial and residential uses along the plan area’s major corridors and in mixed-use centers. The land use map amendments will go into effect on Oct. 1. Read the full announcement.

Next opportunity to engage: None. Project is adopted and becomes effective on Oct. 1.

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