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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

Zoning Confirmation Letters/Land Use Compatibility Statements

The purpose of a zoning confirmation letter is to verify in writing the allowed uses, development standard and regulations applicable to a specific site. Zoning confirmation letters are often used by finance institutions during due diligence purposes, but can be requested by anyone at anytime. Zoning confirmation letters fall into either the Tier 2 or Tier 3 category.

Tier 2 Zoning Confirmation Letters and Land Use Compatibility Statements

Tier 2 letters provide simple, basic information about the location’s current zoning and land use history. Tier 2 letters are often referred to as a "bank letter" and are used by finance institutions during due diligence periods. 

  • Description of current zoning
  • Summary of uses allowed by zoning
  • List of applicable land use history
  • Response generally in three to four weeks

Land Use Compatibility Statements

Land Use Compatibility Statements are a coordination tool used by state or federal agencies to verify whether a use or activity is allowed by right, requires land use review, or is prohibited by the Zoning Code. 

  • Same cost as a Tier 2 Zoning Confirmation Letter
  • Response generally within two to three weeks

Tier 3 Zoning Confirmation Letters

Tier 3 letters provide more detailed information including review and analysis of the past and current uses and permit history of the site. Tier 3 letters are often referred to as a “zoning analysis letter” when they address complex zoning issues or a “nonconforming standard evidence letter” when they are used to document a nonconforming situation. 

  • Description of zoning and zoning history
  • Details of building permit and land use history
  • Responses to specific questions
  • Development analysis upon request
  • Use determinations
  • Documentation of legal nonconforming use or density using standard evidence
  • Response generally in six to eight weeks

Applying for a Zoning Confirmation Letter or Land Use Compatibility Statement

Submitting Your Application

Bring the completed application to the Development Services Center, on the first floor of 1900 SW Fourth Ave and filing fee that must be submitted at the same time as the application. You may also mail your application to the Bureau of Development Services along with the filing fee.

Questions? For further assistance with the land use and zoning regulations that apply to your site, please call us at (503) 823-7526, or visit Planning and Zoning Staff in the Development Services Center.