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Planning and Sustainability

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Phone: 503-823-7700

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

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Why are commercial zones changing to commercial/mixed use?

Most commercial zones currently allow a variety of uses, including retail, offices, services, housing, and even light industry. The new zones will continue to allow a broad array of uses. However, the new plan forecasts that much of the city’s new housing will be located in centers and corridors, often in mixed use buildings, that may include commercial uses on the ground floor and housing in the floors above. Mixed use provides options and flexibility by allowing a variety of uses in one building. Commercial typically refers to buildings that solely have commercial uses, such as an office space or retail spaces. Recasting the zones as commercial/mixed use provides clarity to the community that these zones may include a variety of uses, including housing. The new regulations are designed to better address issues that arise with multi-story mixed use types of development.