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Planning and Sustainability

Innovation. Collaboration. Practical Solutions.

Phone: 503-823-7700

Curbside Hotline: 503-823-7202

1900 SW 4th Ave, Suite 7100, Portland, OR 97201

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What does the Plan say about...?

People pushing person in wheelchair on waterfront pathLivability and the Public Realm

  • Establish new zoning tools and design guidelines to improve the environment where buildings meet the street, by adding features such as plazas and trees.
  • Create an open space “Green Loop” that connects amenities with separated bike and pedestrian paths.
  • Improve east-west routes (e.g., Salmon St) and strengthen regulations that orient new development and activity toward the riverfront.
  • Create a new master plan tool for large sites that requires development to orient to transit, and provide open space and public realm amenities consistent with the area’s character.
  • Support property owners interested in producing publicly accessible open spaces in park-deficient areas like the Central Eastside.


Person working in factoryJobs

  • Increase employment opportunities for workers with a variety of interests, skills and education levels. Improve
    access to growing high tech, light manufacturing and software sectors.
  • Maintain the Central City as a center of innovation and exchange through new strategies (e.g., Innovation Quadrant) that link academic research and industry.
  • Increase job densities through more flexible employment zones in the Central Eastside and policies that seek to add office uses to the Pearl District.
  • Continue investments in transportation infrastructure necessary for business and freight operations.
  • Expand opportunities for commerce on and along the Willamette River.

Ramona ApartmentsBonuses and Transfers

  • Update the bonus and transfer system to align with City priorities.
  • Create a new affordable housing bonus and fund.
  • Establish an industrial space bonus for Central Eastside.
  • Expand the historic preservation transfer.
  • Establish a new river open space bonus to increase public riverfront space.

Working building MAX tracksTransportation and Parking

  • Improve safety and function for pedestrians, bikes, transit and freight by making infrastructure improvements for each mode.
  • Designate the Central City a Multimodal Mixed-Use Area (MMA), and implement transportation projects to facilitate growth in this transit-rich area.
  • Update the Parking Code to improve predictability, reduce costly parking reviews, limit new parking and surface lots, and allow shared parking.
  • Explore tools and strategies to reduce development-related vehicle trip and parking impacts, such as transportation demand management, parking management and other strategies.

View of downtown PortlandHeight and Views

  • Retain the building height pattern from the 1970s, but allow taller buildings along the Transit Mall.
  • Retain the basic step down to the Willamette River, parks and adjacent neighborhoods, but allow greater height around bridgeheads.
  • Protect public view corridors based on the updated Central City Scenic Resource Protection Plan.
  • Reduce height limits within historic districts to ensure compatibility with the existing historic character.

Willamette RiverWillamette River

  • Protect and enhance natural resources by applying a new River Environmental (e) overlay zone to river banks and land within 50 ft of the top of bank and increasing the river setback from 25 ft to 50 ft.
  • Allow small retail shops in the Governor Tom McCall Waterfront Park to activate the riverfront.
  • Support more active uses on the Central Eastside riverfront by applying a mixed use employment zone.

Union StationHistoric Resources and Seismic Upgrades

  • Encourage seismic upgrades and historic preservation by allowing FAR to be transferred to new projects from seismically reinforced historic landmarks and contributing resources in historic districts.
  • Preserve existing non-residential buildings in the Central Residential (RX) zone by increasing flexibility for commercial uses.
  • Support historic preservation in the General Industrial (IG1) zone by allowing commercial uses in historic resources and existing buildings.
  • Preserve scale in historic districts by lowering heights and removing bonus height options.

Greenspace in PortlandEnvironment

  • Improve resilience to climate change and hazards, including flooding, earthquakes and urban heat island by establishing new policies, providing design guidance, and monitoring results.
  • Require that all new structures >20,000 sq ft include ecoroofs and >50,000 sq ft register for LEED Gold.
  • Establish policies and regulations to improve conditions for birds, fish and wildlife, including bird-safe glazing standards.
  • Establish tree canopy targets.