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Charting the Path to New Zoning

Charting the Path to New Zoning HandoutThe proposed draft of the Comprehensive Plan is currently under review by the public and the Planning and Sustainability Commission (PSC). The draft Comprehensive Plan Map proposes land use changes for a number of properties across the city, and many people are eager to talk about the zoning details for those places — particularly in mixed use zones and around campus institutions.

The Comprehensive Plan establishes goals and policies and maps to guide subsequent land use activities. The Comp Plan Map assigns land use designations to every property — but not zones. That’s a separate step in the process.

The land use map identifies what the land can generally be used for (e.g., residential, employment, open space). Should it be light industrial or manufacturing? Multi-family or single-family? Specific rules about how buildings can look or how tall they can be are developed once these general land uses are defined and mapped. The zoning code addresses the details; height, setbacks, floor-area ratio (FAR) and other design characteristics for each property.

Q. So how can we consider new zoning code while we’re still deciding on general land uses?

A. Land use designations and zoning are under different parts of the State of Oregon’s Periodic Review requirement.

  • Task 4 of Periodic Review (goals, policies and land use map) is currently before the PSC. It lays out the guidelines for long- and short-term land use decisions. If you’re interested in high-level direction about issues such as sustainability, equity, public involvement and general development direction in different areas of the city, this is the process you want to focus on.
  • Task 5 (zoning code and zoning map amendments) will come before the PSC in 2015. Task 5 projects (e.g., Mixed-Use Zones Project, Institutional Zoning Project) will be the first to apply the new Comprehensive Plan to on-the-ground rules. If you’re interested in issues like FAR for mixed use development in neighborhood hubs, this is where you can focus your attention.

To complete the Comprehensive Plan process in the time allotted by the state, staff began working on goals and policies (Task 4) last year and implementation projects (Task 5) this year, while Task 4 was — and still is — underway.

This dual work stream means that some information is available on the general approach to zoning code provisions (Task 5) even as the PSC is still deliberating the policy intent and map designations as part of Task 4. Written comments on the goals, policies and land use map were taken until March 13, 2015.

The overlapping sequence will help ensure important zoning details are available before City Council votes on the recommended policies and map in June/July 2015, the state-imposed deadline for adoption of Task 4.

Zoning code and zoning map changes to implement the new Comprehensive Plan will be subject to additional public hearings before final action by the PSC and City Council. The state-imposed deadline for completing the related Task 5 is December 2015.

What’s next?

Task 4 Timeline

All hearings and work sessions are open to the public. Please confirm exact times and topics by checking the Planning and Sustainability Commission calendar.

Date/Time Event/Milestone Address Notes

March 24, April 14, May 12

PSC Work Sessions (no testimony)

1900 SW 4th Ave, Suite 2500A

These meetings are open to the public. Check PSC calendar to confirm details.

April 28 to May 11

Tentative release date for Draft Recommended Plan reflecting PSC directions

  This is a draft of the PSC’s eventual recommendation to City Council,  presented for their review. This staff-prepared draft reflects initial direction from the PSC in previous work sessions, and staff recommendations that the PSC has tentatively accepted.  The PSC will have approximately a month to review it prior to a final vote.  They may make further amendments at the May 26 or June 9 work sessions.   

April 28

3:00 p.m.

Public Hearing on Revised Economic Opportunities Analysis (EOA)

1900 SW 4th Ave, Suite 2500A

This is a state-required report defining employment-related land needs and describing how the plan accommodates projected job growth through 2035.

May 12

12:30 p.m.

Public Hearing on Growth Scenario Report Addendum

1900 SW 4th Ave, Suite 2500A

The 2013 Growth Scenarios Report described different potential growth patterns, and explored how those choices achieve the Portland Plan Measures of Success. This 2015 addendum will evaluate the draft plan against those same metrics. Essentially, this hearing is about determining if the plan will meet the goals we set, such as housing affordability, carbon emissions reduction, transportation mode shifts and tree canopy.   

May 26 or June 9 

Final PSC Work Session and Recommendation (vote)

1900 SW 4th Ave, Suite 2500A

Notification will be sent to property owners whose property is proposed to change, and notification will be sent to everyone who submitted legal testimony on the proposed Zoning Code. Check PSC calendar to confirm details closer to the date.

Summer/Fall 2015

City Council public hearings and decision (vote)

 

Check CPU project calendar to confirm details closer to the date.

Task 5 (Implementation) Timelines

Both the Mixed Use and Institutional Campus zoning projects are currently working with advisory committees to digest background research and define the concepts that will ultimately be brought to the PSC. Both of these projects will also inform a Zoning Map Amendment Package that will advance in 2015. All hearings and work sessions are open to the public. Please confirm exact times and topics by checking the Planning and Sustainability Commission calendar.

Time Event/Milestone Notes
November 2014 Release of initial Mixed Use Zones Preliminary Concept Proposal Identify/name the palette of proposed new zones, provide some basic parameters like anticipated FAR and height limits, and other key parameters.
Spring 2015 (tentative) Release of Mixed Use Concept Report and Institutional Campus Concept Report  
Spring 2015 (tentative) Release of Proposed Zoning Code for Mixed Use and Institutional Campus Zones  
Summer 2015 (tentative) Release of Draft Zoning Maps, including Institutional Campus and Mixed Use Zones Notification will be sent to property owners whose property is proposed to change, and notification will be sent to everyone who submitted legal testimony.
July 2015 (tentative) PSC Public Hearings and Recommendation on Institutional Campus Code Check PSC calendar to confirm details closer to the date.
July/August 2015 (tentative) PSC Public Hearings and Recommendation on Mixed Use Code Notification will be sent to property owners whose property is proposed to change, and notification will be sent to everyone who submitted legal testimony. Check PSC calendar to confirm details closer to the date.
September-November 2015 (tentative) PSC Public Hearings on the Proposed Zoning Maps Check PSC calendar to confirm details closer to the date.
Fall 2015/Winter 2016 (tentative) City Council Public Hearing on the Proposed Zoning Maps Check CPU project calendar to confirm details closer to the date.