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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

More Contact Info

Current BDS Service Levels

Growth in the construction industry has outpaced the City’s ability to keep up with related workload and meet many of its goals for timely service delivery. During the period of July 2015 through June 2016, the permit applications received and permits issued increased by approximately 15% over the previous period of time. Since January, 2016 the permit center has had an average of 4,300 visitors per month and the zoning hotline received an average 1,000 calls per month. To address the increased workload, the Bureau of Development Services, and the other development review bureaus, are hiring additional employees. To provide context, the Bureau of Development Services has hired 72 employees since July 1, 2015. We appreciate your patience as we bring on new employees and train them and apologize for any impacts you may be experiencing to your projects or business caused by delays in our service delivery.
 
Please take the following Current Service Level timelines into consideration as you prepare your project’s schedule.

Service Goal Current Service Level (average)
Permit Center
Wait Times in Development Service Center (DSC)
For permit set up/visit with tech staff
Less than 60 minutes 60 to 120 minutes
Phone Inquiries
Returning calls to Zoning Hotline 24 hours 24 hours
Returning calls to Plan Review/ Permitting Hotlines 24 hours 24 - 48 hours
Early Assistance and Pre-Applications
Early Assistance Appointments 14 calendar days 21 calendar days
Pre-Application Conferences 21 calendar days 26 calendar days
Land Use Reviews
Land Use Reviews (Type I) - Contact applicant regarding completeness 14 calendar days Approx. 25 calendar days
Land Use Reviews (Type Ix) - Contact applicant regarding completeness 21 calendar days Approx. 25 calendar days
Land Use Reviews (Type II) - Contact applicant regarding completeness 14 calendar days Approx. 20 calendar days
Land Use Reviews (Type III) - Contact applicant regarding completeness 21 calendar days Approx. 26 calendar days
Building Permit Plan Review and Pre-Issuance
Commercial New Construction - plan review comments (1st checksheet) 20 business days Approx. 35 business days
Residential New Construction - plan review comments (1st checksheet) 15 business days Approx. 25 business days
Checksheet Corrections Received Reviews 5 business days Approx. 20 business days
Permit Preissuance 2 business days Approx. 15 business days
Inspections
Inspections - Residential 90-95% within 24 hours 83% within 24 hours
Inspections - Commercial 90-95% within 24 hours 71% within 24 hours
Enforcement Services
Construction Code Complaints - Initial Inspection 3-5 business days 15 business days
Housing Complaints - Initial Inspection 3-5 business days 10-15 business days
Zoning & Nuisance Complaints - Initial Inspection 3-5 business days 15-20 business days

Note: Approximately 80% of residential and 50% of commercial remodels, additions and simple permits, continue to be issued over-the-counter on the same day.

Solutions: In addition to hiring and training more staff, the Bureau is utilizing contract workers, receiving assistance from other government agencies, and working overtime, as well as streamlining the permitting and development review processes where possible. We expect to see improvements to service levels within the next two or three months.

The submittal of complete and code compliant permit and land use review applications can help reduce review timelines for projects. The following resources may be helpful:

BDS recognizes and appreciates our business and community partners’ reliance on the services and resources we provide. For more information about Permitting Services, contact: Kareen Perkins, at Kareen.Perkins@portlandoregon.gov or 503-823-3622. For more information about Land Use Services, contact: Ross Jonak at Ross.Jonak@portlandoregon.gov or 503-823-0625.