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Chapter 24.15 Definitions

City Code Chapter

24.15.010 General.

  1. For the purpose of this Title, certain terms, phrases, words, and their derivatives shall be construed as specified herein. Words used in the singular include the plural and the plural the singular. Words used in the masculine gender include the feminine and the feminine the masculine. Terms, words, phrases, and their derivatives used, but not specifically defined in this Chapter, either shall have the meaning defined in this Title, or if not herein defined, shall have the meanings commonly accepted in the community.

24.15.020 Abandoned Structure.

  1. An abandoned structure is a structure that has been vacant for a period in excess of 6 months or any period less than 6 months when a vacant structure or portion thereof constitutes an attractive nuisance or hazard to the public.

24.15.030 Agreement/Contract to Repair/Work.

  1. An agreement or contract to repair/work is a written agreement in which an owner of a structure agrees to carry out repair/work on any abandoned, unsafe, dangerous structure, or structure between a specified commencement and completion date.

24.15.040 Approved Testing Agency.

  1. An approved testing agency is an established and recognized agency regularly engaged in conducting testing and furnishing inspection services.

24.15.045 Boarded.

(Added by Ordinance 162525; amended by 164318 and 168901, effective June 7, 1995.) 

  1. Secured against entry by apparatus which is visible off the premises and is not both lawful and customary to install on occupied structures.

24.15.050 Building.

  1. A building is a structure used or intended for sheltering any use or occupancy.

24.15.060 Dangerous Structure.

(Amended by Ordinance 168626, effective April 22, 1995.) 

  1. Any structure which has any or all of the conditions or defects hereinafter described, to the extent that life, health, property, or safety of the public or its occupants are endangered, shall be deemed to be a dangerous structure and such condition or defects shall be abated pursuant to Sections 24.55.250 and 24.55.300 of this Chapter.
  2. A. Whenever the stress in any materials, member, or portion thereof, due to all dead and live loads, is more than 1-1/2 times the working stress or stresses allowed in the Oregon Structural Specialty Code and Fire and Life Safety Code for new buildings of similar structure, purpose, or location.
  3. B. Whenever any portion thereof has been damaged by fire, earthquake, wind, flood, or by any other cause, to such an extent that the structural strength or stability thereof is materially less than it was before such catastrophe and is less than the minimum requirements of the Oregon State Structural Specialty Code and Fire and Life Safety Code for new buildings of similar structure, purpose, or location.
  4. C.  Whenever any portion or member of appurtenance thereof is likely to fail, or to become detached or dislodged, or to collapse and thereby injure persons or damage property.
  5. D.  Whenever any portion of a building, or any member, appurtenance, or ornamentation of the exterior thereof is not of sufficient strength or stability, or is not so anchored, attached or fastened in place so as to be capable of resisting a wind pressure of one-half of that specified in the Oregon Structural Specialty Code and Fire and Life Safety Code for new buildings of similar structures, purpose, or location without exceeding the working stresses permitted in the Oregon State Structural Specialty Code and Fire and Life Safety Code for such buildings.
  6. E. Whenever any portion thereof has wrecked, warped, buckled, or settled to such an extent that walls or other structural portions have materially less resistance to winds or earthquakes than is required in the case of similar new construction
  7. F.  Whenever the building or structure, or any portion thereof, because of
    1. 1. dilapidation, deterioration, or decay;
    2. 2.  faulty construction;
    3. 3. the removal, movement, or instability of any portion of the ground necessary for the purpose of supporting such building;
    4. 4. the deterioration, decay, or inadequacy of its foundation; or
    5. 5. any other cause, is likely to partially or completely collapse.
  8. G. Whenever, for any reason, the building or structure, or any portion thereof, is manifestly unsafe for the purpose for which it is being used.
  9. H. Whenever the exterior walls or other vertical structural members list, lean, or buckle to such an extent that a plumb line passing through the center of gravity does not fall inside the middle one-third of the base.
  10. I. Whenever the building or structure exclusive of the foundation, shows 33 percent or more damage or deterioration of its supporting member or members, or 50 percent damage or deterioration of its non-supporting members, enclosing, or outside wall coverings.
  11. J. Whenever the building or structure has been so damaged by fire, wind, earthquake or flood or any other cause, or has become so dilapidated or deteriorated as to become (I) an attractive nuisance, or (ii) a harbor for vagrants or criminals.
  12. K.  Whenever any building or structure has been constructed, exists, or is maintained in violation of any specific requirement or prohibition applicable to such building or structure provided by the building regulations of this City, as specified in the Oregon State Structural Specialty Code and Fire and Life Safety Code or any law or ordinance of this State or City relating to the condition, location, or structure or buildings.
  13. L. Whenever any building or structure which, whether or not erected in accordance with all applicable laws and ordinances, has in any non-supporting part, member, or portion, less than 50 percent, or in any supporting part, member, or portion less than 66 percent of the
    1. 1.  strength,
    2. 2. fire-resisting qualities or characteristics required by law in the case of a newly constructed building of like area, height, and occupancy in the same location. This subsection does not apply to strength required to resist seismic loads. For application of seismic requirements see Chapter 24.85.
  14. M. Whenever any building or structure, because of dilapidated condition, deterioration, damage, inadequate exits, lack of sufficient fire-resistive construction, faulty electric wiring, gas connections, or heating apparatus, or other cause, is a fire hazard.
  15. N. Whenever any building or structure is in such a condition as to constitute a public nuisance known to the common law or in equity jurisprudence.
  16. O.  Whenever any portion of a building or structure remains on a site for more than 30 days after the demolition or destruction of the building or structure.

24.15.065 Derelict Commercial Building.

(Added by Ordinance 162525; amended by 164318 and 168901, effective June 7, 1995.) 

  1. Any building or structure:
  2. A. In which there are no dwelling units, and
  3. B. Which is not an accessory building to a building in which there are dwelling units, and
  4. C. Which building, structure or a portion thereof is unoccupied; and
  5. D. Which meets any of the following criteria:
    1. 1. Has been ordered vacated by the Director pursuant to 24.55.250 F; or
    2. 2. Has been issued a correction notice by the Director pursuant to 24.55.250 A.; or
    3. 3. Is unsecured; or
    4. 4. Is boarded; or
    5. 5. Has been posted for violation of Section 18.03.050 more than once in any two year period; or
    6. 6. Has, while vacant, had a nuisance abated by the City pursuant to Sections 18.03.010 or 18.03.030.

24.15.070 Director.

(Amended by Ordinances 176955 and 191736, effective July 1, 2024.)

  1. Director shall mean the Director of the Portland Permitting & Development or a duly authorized representative of the Director.

24.15.075 Dwelling Unit.

(Added by Ordinance 168901, effective June 7, 1995.) 

  1. One or more habitable rooms which are occupied by or designed or intended to be occupied by one person, or by a family or group of housemates living together as a single housekeeping unit.

24.15.080 Exterior Property Area.

  1. Exterior property area is the open space on the premises and on adjoining property under the control of the owner or operator of such premises.

24.15.090 Hearings Officer.

  1. Hearings Officer is the office of the Code Enforcement Hearings Officer created pursuant to Section 22.02.010 of the City Code.

24.15.110 Inspections Manager.

(Amended by Ordinances 176955 and 191736, effective July 1, 2024.)

  1. The Inspections Manager is the Director’s duly authorized representative responsible for the administration of the Inspections Division of the Portland Permitting & Development.

24.15.115 Master Permit/Facilities Permit Program.

(Added by Ordinance 172431; amended by Ordinance 173973, effective January 1, 2000.) 

  1. The Master Permit/Facilities Permit program is a special alternative inspection program authorized under Oregon Revised Statute 455.190. This program is available to commercial/industrial building owners and building management companies to streamline the approval of maintenance/repair and tenant improvement work on their private facilities.

24.15.120 Owner.

  1. Owner is any person, agent, firm, or corporation having a legal or equitable interest in a property.

24.15.125 Personal Wireless Service Facility.

(Added by Ordinance 190350, effective May 7, 2021.) 

  1. An antenna facility, including: (a) an antenna designed for the purpose of emitting radiofrequency (RF) radiation, to be operated or operating from a fixed location pursuant to FCC authorization, for the provision of personal wireless service and any commingled information services; (b) antenna equipment, including equipment, switches, wiring, cabling, power sources, shelters or cabinets associated with an antenna, located at the same fixed location as the antenna for personal wireless service; or (c) a structure that is primarily used or that will be primarily used for the provision of personal wireless service, whether such service is provided on a stand-alone basis or commingled with other wireless communications services.

24.15.130 Repair.

  1. Repair is the reconstruction or renewal of any part of an existing structure for the purpose of its maintenance.

24.15.150 Requested Inspection.

  1. Requested inspection means any additional inspection which is not part of the City’s regular or mandated inspection program.

24.15.160 Service Station Site.

(Amended by Ordinance 169905, effective April 1, 1996.) 

  1. A service station site shall mean premises improved as a Group S, Division 3, occupancy for use as automobile or truck service stations used for supplying fuel, oil, minor accessories, and trailers, excluding body and fender repair for passenger automobiles, trucks, and truck trailers at retail direct to the customer.

24.15.170 Substandard.

  1. Substandard means in violation of any of the minimum requirements as set out in this Title.

24.15.190 Subject Structure.

(Amended by Ordinances 176955 and 191736, effective July 1, 2024.)

  1. A subject structure is any abandoned, unsafe, or dangerous structure upon which the Portland Permitting & Development has commenced abatement proceedings.

24.15.200 Structure.

  1. A structure is that which is built or constructed, an edifice or building of any kind, or any piece or work artificially built up or composed of parts joined together in some definite manner.

24.15.215 Tree Removal.

(Added by Ordinance 168340; amended by Ordinances 184522, 185448 and 186053, effective January 1, 2015.)  

  1. Tree Removal shall have the same meaning as “removal” as defined in Title 11 Trees.

24.15.220 Unoccupied.

(Added by Ordinance 162525; amended by Ordinance 168901, effective June 6, 1970.)

  1.  Not being used for a lawful occupancy.

24.15.230 Unsafe.

  1. Means:
  2. A. Any structure which is structurally unsafe or not provided with adequate egress, or which constitutes a fire hazard or is otherwise dangerous to human life.
  3. B. Unsafe use is any use of structures constituting a hazard to health, safety, or public welfare by reason of inadequate maintenance, dilapidation, obsolescence, fire hazard, disaster, damage, or abandonment.
  4. C. Unsafe appendages are parapet walls, cornices, spires, towers, tanks, statuaries, or other appendages or structural members which are supported by, attached to, or part of a building, and which are in a deteriorated condition or otherwise unable to sustain the design loads which are specified in the Oregon State Structural Specialty and Fire and Life Safety Code.

24.15.240 Unsecured.

(Added by Ordinance 162525; amended by Ordinance 168901, effective June 7, 1995.) 

  1. Any building or structure in which doors, windows, or apertures are open or broken so as to allow access by unauthorized persons.

24.15.250 Value/Valuation.

  1. Value or valuation of a structure or building shall be the estimated cost to replace the structure or building in kind, based on either the building valuation data reported in the latest issue of the ICBO Building Standards Journal or by any alternate method approved by the Director to give an accurate assessment of building replacement costs.

24.15.260 Warehousing.

  1. Warehousing means securing a structure against vandalism, deterioration, and unauthorized entry pending its return to active use or occupancy.