May 2020 – Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) Updates

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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.

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Useful Resources

COVID-19 Impacts

Please be aware that public meetings are being cancelled or rescheduled for public health and safety, so be sure to check the calendars on specific project pages for meeting updates and the latest information.

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: A new public hearing date at City Council has been scheduled for June 3, after the March 12 hearing was cancelled due to the COVID-19 response (check the project website calendar to confirm the date and time). This Council meeting is being held virtually. You can view the Council hearing online at portlandoregon.gov/video.

Each of the amendment packages includes a description of the amendment, a table listing the sections of code that are proposed to be amended, followed by the specific revised code language and commentary. The draft text of the full amendment packages is available under “Amendment Packages for City Council’s Consideration” on the project documents page.

The public record remains open for written testimony regarding these amendments until the close of the public hearing on June 3. You can submit written testimony:

  • Online through the Map App
  • By email to cctestimony@portlandoregon.gov
  • By 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” to ensure it is routed to the right place.

You can alsotestify “virtually” through Zoom. You can use a computer, mobile device or telephone to testify during the hearing. Testifiers will need to register ahead of time on the project website between May 18 and June 2. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the virtual hearing. Remember, you do not need to register to view the hearing, which will be live-streamed.

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.

Next opportunity to engage: City Council will hold a public hearing on the amendments on June 3. Council will reconvene later to subsequently vote on the amendments followed by another meeting date to vote to adopt the entire RIP package. Please check the RIP website and/or the Council calendar to confirm dates and times of the hearing and subsequent meetings.

Contact: Morgan Tracy, 503-823-6879, Morgan.Tracy@portlandoregon.gov

Anti-Displacement Action Plan

What:The focus of this work is on increasing the long-range resiliency of the City and its communities to deal with chronic economic disparities that contribute to displacement, especially of the most vulnerable, especially when exacerbated by a crisis like COVID-19 or increasing housing costs, investment patterns and gentrification.

The goal is to establish an Anti-Displacement Task Force that brings City leadership together with community members to build transparency, coordination and accountability around the implementation of local anti-displacement policies. The outcome at the end of the two-year process will be a community-vetted action plan that lays the foundation for equitable cross-bureau investments and policymaking based on strong community engagement and gives the community an institutionalized seat at the table for elevating concerns and co-creating solutions.

Status: City Council voted on April 1 to adopt an ordinance granting funds to the Portland African American Leadership Forum (PAALF) to hire an anti-displacement coalition organizer. The organizer will help build the capacity of a coalition made up of frontline community organizations to drive an anti-displacement policy agenda. Additional information about this project can be found on the City’s project webpage.

Next opportunity to engage: Please see PAALF’s website for more information on the coalition. Community members interested in learning more about the project can also sign up for project updates.

Contact: Andrea Pastor, 503-823-7845, andrea.pastor@portlandoregon.gov

Central City 2035 Plan (CC2035) Re-Adoption

What: City Council adopted the Central City 2035 Plan in June 2018, and the plan went into effect in July 2018. The plan was appealed to the Land Use Board of Appeals (LUBA) and then to the Court of Appeals. On March 16, 2020, the Oregon Court of Appeals remanded the Central City 2035 Plan, a new land use, transportation and environmental plan to manage growth and development in Portland’s urban core. City Council must now readopt the plan to address the items identified in the Court’s ruling.

Status: The Re-Adoption Draft is available on the project website.

Next opportunity to engage: City Council will hold a virtual public hearing on May 28, 2020 at 2 pm. The record is now open for the public to provide testimony. People wishing to testify at the hearing must register in advance. More information can be found on the project website. Written testimony should be submitted and received by the start of the hearing. Council may leave the record open for responsive testimony.

  • Testify on the Map App: Select the “Testify” button to enter your testimony.
  • Send a letter to: City Council, CC2035 Re-adoption Draft testimony, 1221 SW 4th Ave Room 130, Portland OR 97204. 

Expiration Date Extension Project

What: The Expiration Date Extension Project addresses several issues related to the administration of the Portland Zoning Code (Title 33) and the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the development market. It will amend the Zoning Code to extend the expiration date of some land use reviews, final plats and pre-application conferences; maintain inclusionary housing rates that are set to increase; and allow for virtual neighborhood contact meetings.

Specifically, it will:

  • Extend the expiration date for some land use reviews until Jan. 1, 2024.
  • Extend the expiration date for some pre-application conferences for one more year.
  • Allow some final plats 365 days of inactivity before they are voided.
  • Allow neighborhood contact meetings to be held remotely using video conferencing technology.
  • Extend the expiration date an additional three years for the lower inclusionary housing rates that apply outside the Central City and Gateway plan districts.

Status: The Proposed Draft was released in April 2020 and can be found on the project website.

Next opportunity to engage: A public hearing before the Planning and Sustainability Commission is scheduled for May 26, 2020. A hearing before City Council is expected in July 2020.

Contact: JP McNeil, 503-823-6046, jason.mcneil@portlandoregon.gov

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 Proposed Draft for public review on January 14. The Planning and Sustainability Commission held a public hearing on February 25 and work sessions on the proposed draft on March 10 and May 12. An April 14 work session was cancelled.

Next opportunity to engage: The next work session with possible PSC action on the draft plan is scheduled for May 26 at 5 p.m. The work session is open to the public, but public testimony will not be taken. A public hearing with the Design Commission on design recommendations for South Portland / Macadam Plan District area will be set in July. City Council will hold a public hearing on the River Plan / South Reach Recommended Draft later in 2020. Please check the project events page to confirm meeting dates and times.

Contact: Debbie Bischoff, 503-823-6946, Debbie.Bischoff@portlandoregon.gov

Expanding Opportunities for Affordable Housing

What: Supporting community-based organizations (CBOs) that want to use their property to develop affordable housing with proposed zoning code changes to the Conditional Use review process on conditional use sites and map changes on some CBO-owned sites.

Status: On March 10, the Planning and Sustainability Commission voted to support all of the proposed code changes – and most of the proposed map changes – with amendments to further liberalize code standards for parking and property line adjustments on conditional use sites. Following the May 14 hearing, City Council will meet on May 21 at 2 p.m. to deliberate and vote on the zoning code and map changes. There will be no public testimony at that meeting.

Next opportunity to engage: The Recommended Draft is now available for review. City Council will hold a virtual public hearing on May 14 at 2 p.m. Public testimony may also be submitted via the MapApp and by mail. The testimony period will likely be extended to May 20 (see project website).

Contact: Nan Stark, 503-823-3986, Nan.Stark@portlandoregon.gov

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. A joint public hearing with the Planning and Sustainability Commission and the Design Commission was held on Oct. 22. Opportunities for submitting public testimony ended on Nov. 15.

Next opportunity to engage: The two commissions will continue to hold work sessions on the staff proposal through June 2020 before making their recommendations. While COVID-19 has delayed some scheduled work sessions, the PSC held a virtual work session on April 28 and will continue the session on June 9. The Design Commission will hold their next work session on June 4. However, no testimony is being taken at these work sessions. The Recommended Draft is anticipated to be released in late Summer 2020, with a City Council hearing to follow.

Contact: Phil Nameny, 503-823-7709, Phil.Nameny@portlandoregon.gov

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 Proposed Draft will be released in June 2020.

Next opportunity to engage: Due to the COVID-19 crisis, public hearings have been postponed.  The tentative schedule includes a public hearing of the Planning and Sustainability Commission in July 2020. Notice of hearings will be sent to all affected properties.

Contact:ezone@portlandoregon.gov or 503-823-4225

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: Community feedback from Fall 2019 was integrated into the creation of three growth concepts for the town center, which were shared with the public at an open house on March 4. Community input from the open house and an online survey will help staff narrow choices further and move toward a proposed plan. A Discussion Draft of the plan is scheduled for release in late July. A Community Advisory Group (CAG) meets every other month (through June) to guide development of the plan.

Next opportunity to engage: Project staff will provide a briefing to the Planning and Sustainability Commission on June 9. The March draft growth concepts for the West Portland Town Center can still be viewed online. The next CAG meeting will be in June and will be held remotely/online. See the project event page for details on these meetings. CAG meetings are open to the public and past materials are available online.

Contact: Joan Frederiksen, 503-823-3111, Joan.Frederiksen@portlandoregon.gov

South Portland Area Planning

What: The Bureaus of Transportation (PBOT) and Planning and Sustainability (BPS) are working with community members to develop land use, circulation, and urban design plans along SW Naito Parkway and around the Ross Island Bridgehead in South Portland. This effort is part of BPS’s Southwest Corridor Inclusive Communities Project.

Status: The project is partially on hold while PBOT recalibrates their project scope and timeline including a final community engagement event. BPS is now scoping the range of land use and map changes to be recommended in the plan. An existing conditions report was published in March and includes an addendum summarizing major infrastructure projects in the study area.

Two development concepts for the Ross Island Bridgehead opportunity sites will be refined once community engagement is restarted. Additionally, a racial equity analysis of the project will be led by BPS once community engagement is restarted.

Next opportunity to engage: The next open house is TBD. Check the project calendar for updates.

Contact: Kevin Bond, 503-823-1112, Kevin.Bond@portlandoregon.gov

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. The next CAG meeting will be held in June 2020 at a date and time to be determined.

Contact: Brandon Spencer-Hartle, 503-823-4641, Brandon.Spencer@portlandoregon.gov

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 2019 into a Proposed Draft of possible zoning code changes.

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

Contact: Brandon Spencer-Hartle, 503-823-4641, Brandon.Spencer@portlandoregon.gov

Montgomery Park to Hollywood Transit and Land Use Development Strategy (MP2H)

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 in NE Portland. The project is a joint effort between the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) and the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT).

Status:  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 is assisting with land use and transportation planning elements. A kickoff open house was held on March 2, attended by some 25 community members. Grant agreements with community-based organizations are being developed. Outreach and involvement for underserved communities and other targeted groups is expected to occur between May and August 2020.  A NW Project Working Group (PWG) has been selected and met via Zoom on May 13, 2020.

Next opportunity to engage: Public workshops are planned for late June/early July 2020. Draft urban design concepts will be shared and community feedback gathered. Dates to be announced. The next PWG meeting is planned in June and is open to the public; check website for details.

Contact: Barry Manning (BPS), 503-823-7965, barry.manning@portlandoregon.gov or Kate Drennan (PBOT), 503-823-4599, kate.drennan@portlandoregon.gov

Fossil Fuel Terminal Zoning Project

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

Status: City Council voted to adopt the ordinance on Dec. 18, 2019. The ordinance has been appealed to LUBA by the Western States Petroleum Association, Portland Business Alliance, Oregon Business and Industry, and Columbia Pacific Building Trades Council. LUBA proceedings are expected later this spring.

Next opportunity to engage: Only parties to the appeal can submit testimony to LUBA.

Contact: Tom Armstrong, 503-823-3527, Tom.Armstrong@portlandoregon.gov