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Development Services

From Concept to Construction

Phone: 503-823-7300

Email: bds@portlandoregon.gov

1900 SW 4th Ave, Portland, OR 97201

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BDS Service Updates


Wait times in the Development Services Center (DSC)

BDS Service Level Update

Service Level Update: 
Wait times in the Development Services Center (DSC)

BDS is experiencing an overall increase in customer traffic in the DSC of 15% to 25% on a weekly basis from levels of a year ago.

This continued heavy volume of permitting activity is currently peaking on Tuesdays and Fridays, and is resulting in longer than usual wait times to see all plan review staff on those days.

Customers may experience reduced wait times by arriving early in the day on Mondays and Wednesdays.

Please consider this as you plan your next visit to the DSC.

To learn more about the Bureau of Development Services please visit us online at www.portlandoregon.gov/bds.

Please subscribe to receive other Bureau of Development Services notification.

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Holiday Closure Friday, July 3, 2015: Observance of Independence Day

BDS Service Level Update

Service Level Update: 
Holiday Closure Friday, July 3, 2015: Observance of Independence Day

Recognizing our business and community partners’ reliance on the services and resources we provide, the Bureau of Development Services (BDS) is providing advance notice of an upcoming Holiday closure.

The Bureau of Development Services and Interagency Offices will be closed on Friday, July 3, 2015 in observance of Independence Day, July 4, 2015

The Development Services Center (DSC) and Permitting Services hours are below. The DSC doors open at 7:30 AM for permit set-up.

Monday (June 29)        8:00 am – 3:00 pm
Tuesday (June 30)       8:00 am – 3:00 pm
Wednesday (July 1)     8:00 am – 3:00 pm
Thursday (July 2)       8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Friday (July 3)              closed

Access to BDS Permits Online for simple residential trade (electrical, mechanical, and plumbing) are available through our website. http://www.portlandoregon.gov/bds/42781 seven days a week, 24 hours a day.

Due to the holiday there may be a higher than normal volume of permitting customers and inspection requests on Monday, July 6. BDS thanks you in advance for your patience.

To learn more about the Bureau of Development Services please visit us online at www.portlandoregon.gov/bds.

Residential Inspections Posting Daily Inspection Schedules Online, Increasing Inspection Efficiencies

BDS Service Level Update

Service Level Update: 
Residential Inspections Posting Daily Inspection Schedules Online,
Increasing Inspection Efficiencies

Beginning May 1, 2015, the Bureau of Development Services Residential Inspections is launching an online customer inspection notification system that will replace daily telephone calls residential inspectors currently make informing customers of their two hour inspection window. This change is an effort to enhance efficiencies, streamline processes and increase the number of daily inspections performed.  

Residential Inspection customers will:

The online posting of daily two-hour inspection windows will increase access to important information that tenants, homeowners and contractors need to schedule their day around building permit inspections. It is estimated that this change will save each of the approximately 20 Inspectors one hour a day in time currently being spent making telephone calls, which will allow each inspector to perform an additional four inspections a day.  

No online access?  Customers without online access can call the Residential Inspections support staff after 8:15 AM at 503-823-7388.

Scheduling an Inspection?  All other residential inspection processes for scheduling a Residential Permit Inspection remain the same:

  • Customers will call the automated Inspection Request (IVR) line 503-823-7000 and enter the code associated with the requested inspection.
  • Customers will have the ability to leave instructions regarding lockbox codes, plan locations and the location of the sign off card in a voicemail when scheduling for inspection through the automated Inspection Request (IVR) phone line at 503-823-7000.

This change does not impact the Bureau’s Field Issuance Remodel (FIR) program or Commercial inspections.  

Effective April 20, 2015 - Changes to Residential Demolition Notification, Delay, and Appeal Requirements and New Certification Form for Asbestos and Lead-Based Paints

BDS Service Level Update

Service Level Update: 
Effective April 20, 2015 - Changes to Residential Demolition Notification, Delay, and Appeal Requirements and New Certification Form for Asbestos and Lead-Based Paints

On February 12, 2015, Portland City Council approved changes to City of Portland Title 24, Building Regulations, eliminating demolition delay exemptions, increasing public notification for residential demolitions, and revising the rules for appealing the issuance of a residential demolition permit. The Code changes also created a new Major Residential Alterations and Additions (MRAA) permit category that requires advanced neighborhood notification. Along with implementation of these Code changes, the Bureau of Development Services (BDS) will require the applicants of these two permit types to submit a Self-Certification form that states they are in compliance with regulations governing asbestos and lead-based paint. These changes go into effect April 20, 2015. 

A document summarizing the changes to projects in the MRAA permit category was published by BDS on March 12, 2015. More information on the changes can be found on the BDS Major Residential Alteration and Addition webpage and by viewing Ordinance 187017

A summary of the changes to single family residential demolition permitting that go into effect April 20, 2015;

  • Permitting of all residential demolitions will require a 35-day delay in issuing the permit, the “one for one” [one single family structure to replace one demolished single family structure] exemption has been eliminated. 
  • Applicants must complete a Certification Regarding Asbestos and Lead-Based Paint and provide this form to BDS prior to issuance of the permit. 
  • Applicants will be required to place door hangers on adjacent properties 5 days before demolition activity is expected to commence.
  • BDS will mail notification of the demolition permit to addresses within 150 feet of the property.
  • BDS will mail notification to the recognized organizations whose boundaries include the site.  
  • The site of the demolition will no longer be required to post a sign regarding the demolition permit during the 35 day delay period.

In addition to notification and delay changes, the process to request an extension of the 35 day delay period will change:

  1. Any interested party may file an appeal of the demolition permit and request an extension of the delay period for a maximum of an additional 60 days
  2. The appeal to extend the delay will be heard by the City of Portland Code Hearings Officer, part of the Auditor’s Office, through a quasi-judicial process.  
  3. A completed Residential Demolition Permit Appeal Application form and fee along with documentation addressing specific criteria must be received by BDS prior to 4:30 pm on the 35th day of the demolition delay.

For information on notification and appeal requirements, downloadable Door Hangers, Self-Certification Regarding Asbestos and Lead-Based Paint form, and the Delay Appeal form, visit the Residential Permits Demolition webpage. You can also visit the Development Services Center or call 503-823-7300.

Major Residential Alteration and Addition Permits: New Permit Category with Notification and Delay Requirements

BDS Service Level Update

Service Level Update: 
Major Residential Alteration and Addition Permits: New Permit Category with Notification and Delay Requirements

On February 12, 2015, Portland City Council approved changes to City of Portland Title 24, Building Regulations, eliminating demolition delay exemptions and increasing public notification and delay for residential demolitions. The Code changes also create a new Major Residential Alterations and Additions (MRAA) permit category that requires advanced notification. In addition, the bureau is requiring applicants to complete a Certification Regarding Asbestos and Lead-Based Paint form and submit prior to issuance of a MRAA permit. 

These changes go into effect April 20, 2015. 

This document summarizes the new 35-day delay and notification requirements for residential projects that fall within the MRAA permit category. More information on the changes can be found on the BDS Major Residential Alteration and Addition webpage and by viewing Ordinance 187017

Permitting of all projects within the new MRAA permit category will require a 35-day delay in issuing the permit from the time properties are posted with door hangers and email notification is provided to the recognized organizations whose boundaries include the site. These notification requirements can be initiated and completed prior to a permit application being submitted for review.  

Major alteration or addition is defined as any of the following: 

  • Adding any new story, including a basement or other below-grade structure. Raising a structure to meet the required headroom in a basement is considered the same as creating a basement;
  • Increasing or replacing 50 percent or more of the exterior wall area on any floor. If the subflooring under an exterior wall is removed, it will be treated as if the wall was removed;
  • Adding total new floor area to the existing structure that exceeds 800 square feet; or
  • Adding an area exceeding 100 percent of the existing foundation footprint area of the structure.

Construction industry professionals and homeowners are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the definition above, so that they can meet the mandatory notification requirements for projects that fall into the MRAA permit category. It is strongly recommended that, if the project will fall within 10% of any of the thresholds defined above, the neighborhood notification process be voluntarily enacted to minimize neighbor’s concerns about the scope and size of the projects and avoid additional delays.

Notification requirements for major alteration/addition projects include two main components:

  1. Emailed notice to the recognized organizations (Neighborhood Association and District Coalition) whose boundaries include the site; and
  2. Notice must be posted (by using door hangers provided by BDS) on all properties abutting the site, including across a right of way. [See diagram] Please note that you may download and print the door hangers from your computer, if you prefer. We recommend printing them on card stock.

Compliance with these notification requirements is required to be documented by the owner or owner’s representative using the Neighborhood Notification form. The form is required to be submitted to BDS prior to the issuance of a permit. Please visit the Major Residential Alteration or Addition webpage for specific notification requirements and forms. 

For information on notification requirements, the Neighborhood Notification form, and downloadable door hanger, visit BDS Major Residential Alteration or Addition webpage. You can also visit the Development Services Center or call 503-823-7300.