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City Council prepares for final vote to adopt Portland’s new Zoning Map and Code changes

Commissioners make key decisions about off-street parking requirements, floor area ratios (FAR) in the Alphabet Historic District, drive-throughs and more

On Tuesday, November 22, 2016, the Portland City Council held its final meeting to discuss and vote on Commissioner-sponsored amendments to the Recommended Early Implementation Package of Portland’s new Comprehensive Plan. Council is scheduled to vote on the amended package before the end of the year. Key votes on amendments included:

Off-street parking requirements

City Council voted to remove minimum off-street parking requirements for development close to frequent transit that includes affordable housing. This amendment revisited a 2013 code change that imposed minimum requirements for new development of more than 30 units.

Floor Area Ratios (FAR) in RH zones in Northwest Portland’s Alphabet Historic

Council voted to remove an element of the Planning and Sustainability Commission’s Recommended Draft that would have decreased the allowed floor area ratio (FAR) in high-density residential (RH) zones in Northwest Portland’s Alphabet Historic District. City Council’s vote will keep the existing 4:1 FAR.

Drive-throughs in commercial mixed use zones

Commissioners also voted to expand the PSC-recommended prohibition of new drive- through facilities to include mixed use zones throughout the city (not just east of 80th Ave, as PSC recommended). This amendment also adds more liberal rules to allow owners of existing drive-throughs to upgrade and/or expand them.

Next Steps

Council has now completed their review of the new Zoning Map and Code changes for mixed use zones, campus institutions, employment land and residential and open space zones and more. You can view the work session on the Auditor’s website.

Next Commissioners will review “findings” (e.g., proof that Portland’s new Zoning Map and Code changes, etc. meets statewide planning goals) and receive revised ordinances on December 14, followed by a final vote to adopt the Recommended Early Implementation Package as amended on December 21. After that vote, the package will go to the state for acknowledgement. The zoning changes are tentatively expected to take effect in January 2018.

Upcoming City Council Actions

Consideration of the substitute ordinance to adopt the 2035 Comprehensive Plan Early Implementation Package, as amended 
December 14, 2 p.m.
Council Chambers, City Hall
1221 SW Fourth Avenue

Adopt the 2035 Comprehensive Plan Implementation Package
December 21, 2 p.m.
Council Chambers, City Hall
1221 SW Fourth Avenue

Please check the Council website to confirm dates, times and location.

Questions?
Call the Comprehensive Plan Helpline at 503-823-0195.



City Council holds final hearing on the 2035 Comprehensive Plan

Final vote on the City's new long-range plan for growth and development scheduled for December 14.

On Thursday, November 17, 2016, the Portland City Council held a public hearing on their amendments to the 2035 Comprehensive Plan Early Implementation Projects. They heard testimony about the Hayden Island mobile home park, height in the NW Alphabet District, drive-throughs and parking minimums, among other issues. The Commission will discuss the testimony in a special meeting on November 22 at 9 a.m., then vote to adopt the final package on December 14 and December 21.

The Early Implementation Package is the final phase of the Comprehensive Plan Update project. Last year, Council adopted new goals, policies and a land use map to guide growth and development for the next 20 years. Now they are poised to adopt a new Zoning Map and Code.

Learn more about the Early Implementation Package.

Watch the video of the November 17 work session.

City Council-proposed amendments to Comp Plan Zoning Code and Map available for review

Portlanders invited to review amendments regarding drive throughs, floor area ratios in NW Portland, off-street parking and more

Last July, the Portland Planning and Sustainability Commission (PSC) held a hearing on the Comprehensive Plan Early Implementation Package. Commissioners considered public testimony on Zoning Map and Code changes for mixed use zones, campus institutions, employment land, and residential and open space zones.

After discussing the code and map changes during two work sessions, the PSC made its recommendation to City Council on the Early Implementation Package on August 23, 2016. Council subsequently held two public hearings (October 6 and 13) and a work session on the Recommended Draft.

Each Commissioner has now submitted their amendments to the recommendations.

View the Commissioner-sponsored amendments to the Early Implementation Package.

The amendments in this report have not yet been adopted by Council.

Process

Amending the Recommended Early Implementation Package requires a vote by City Council following public hearings. The Mayor or one of the other Commissioners must make a motion to introduce the amendment — after considering public testimony. Then another Commissioner must second that motion, and the amendment must receive at least three votes (a majority of the five-member City Council) in order for it to “pass.”

Public Hearings on City Council-sponsored Amendments to the Comp Plan Early Implementation Package

November 17, 2016, 2 p.m.
City Hall, Council Chambers
1221 SW 4th Avenue
Portland, OR 97204

Time and date are subject to change. Check the Auditor’s website to confirm meeting details, as well as tips for testifying. The Auditor’s website also allows you to watch a live stream or recorded video of the hearing.   

Overview of Amendments

The amendments include technical amendments proposed by the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability staff and a series of amendments (3 through 53) sponsored by Commissioners, covering a variety of topics related to the Zoning Map, Zoning Code, TSP and Community Involvement Program. Amendments range from zone changes on single properties to code changes affecting the entire city.

A few of the topics that sparked a lot of testimony are described below.

Off-street parking requirements

This amendment would change the recommended draft to remove minimum off-street parking requirements from sites close to frequent transit. It  would undo a 2013 code change that imposed minimum requirements for developments of more than 30 units.

Floor Area Ratios (FAR) in RH zones in Northwest Portland’s Alphabet Historic

There are three proposed options for amendments related to allowed floor area ratios (FAR) in high-density residential (RH) zones in Northwest Portland’s Alphabet Historic District. City Council can adopt only one. The choices include: a) uphold the Planning and Sustainability Commission (PSC) recommendation to reduce the area where 4:1 is allowed; b) remove the PSC’s FAR recommendation, which would retain the existing 4:1 in much of the district; or c) modify the proposed map to return four additional sites to the existing mapped 4:1 area (FAR would be limited to 2:1 elsewhere). 

Drive-throughs in commercial mixed use zones

There are three proposed options for amendments related to drive-throughs. City Council can adopt only one. The choices include: a) uphold the PSC recommendation prohibiting drive-through facilities east of 80th Avenue; b) allow new drive-through facilities and quick vehicle servicing uses only in the CE (Commercial Employment) zone, and allow existing facilities in other mixed use zones to be expanded or rebuilt; or c) prohibit new drive- through facilities in all mixed use zones (not just east of 80th Ave), but allow more liberal allowances to rebuild or expand existing facilities.

Next Steps

After the public hearing on the amendments, City Council is tentatively scheduled to hold a work session on November 22. Council is then expected to vote to adopt the new Zoning Code and Map in December. These dates are subject to change, so check the Auditor’s website to confirm.

For more information, stay tuned to the Comp Plan News feed for updates as the council schedule firms up.

Recap of October 13 City Council Hearing on Comp Plan Recommended Early Implementation Package

Commissioners hear testimony from more than 60 Portlanders about public trail alignments, zoning changes in Northwest Portland and more

On October 13, 2016, City Council held the second of two public hearings on the Comprehensive Plan Recommended Early Implementation Package. More than 60 Portlanders testified in front of commissioners, including a dozen or so people who had signed up but were unable to testify at the previous hearing on October 6. Mayor Charlie Hales left the written testimony period open until 8 a.m. Monday, October 17 to give Portlanders a few more days to submit testimony via email, letter or the Map App. 

What did people talk about at the hearings?

Testimony provided on October 13 addressed a variety of topics, including parking, major public trail alignments, parcel-specific zoning requests, height reductions for future development in some historic districts in Northwest Portland, and Transportation System Plan Street Design Classifications.

Find out more about the October 6 hearing, including watching the video of the hearing.

Next Steps

Over the next two months, City Council will hold a couple of work sessions and a final hearing before adopting the Recommended Early Implementation Package. Next up is a work session on October 25 to consider public testimony, discuss specific topics and prepare amendments. These amendments will be “sponsored” by Commissioners, based on public testimony on the Recommended Early Implementation Package as well as their own interests and concerns.

On November 17 City Council will hold the last public hearing on the City’s new Comp Plan to accept testimony on the amendments. Council will discuss that testimony during a work session on November 22, and a final vote on the Recommended Early Implementation Package will take place in December.

City Council Work Session
Recommended Early Implementation Package
Tuesday, October 25, 2016, 9 a.m.
City Hall Council Chambers
1221 SW 4th Avenue

City Council Public Hearing
Amendments to Recommended Early Implementation Package
Thursday, November 17, 2016, 2 p.m.
City Hall Council Chambers
1221 SW 4th Avenue

Watch City Council meetings live or at your convenience online.

Please check the Auditor’s website for more information about how to testify and to confirm details.

Questions?

Call the Comp Plan Helpline at 503-823-0195.