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The City of Portland, Oregon

Development Services

From Concept to Construction

Phone: 503-823-7300


1900 SW 4th Ave, Portland, OR 97201

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Bureau of Planning and Sustainability continues “Regulatory Improvement” projects

RICAP 7, RICAP 8 and Accessory Structure Amendments are all in the pipeline

Portland Zoning CodeThe Regulatory Improvement Program at the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) is alive and well with several ongoing projects at different stages. The Regulatory Improvement program is an ongoing process to improve the city’s land use regulations and procedures. The program is implemented through Regulatory Improvement Code Amendment Packages (RICAPs), and through other regulatory projects on specific subjects. Below are the most recent developments. For more information check the Regulatory Improvement website at  

RICAP 7 was a workplan of 45 items approved for research last year.  During the winter and spring of 2014/2015, staff analyzed these items and presented a package of code amendments to the Planning and Sustainability Commission (PSC). Amendments include mostly technical amendments, but also include several issues related to design review and a clarification on how floor area is interpreted. On April 28, the PSC recommended adoption of the staff proposal to the City Council. The City Council will hold a hearing on this recommendation on June 17, 2015. 

RICAP 8 is the latest regulatory improvement workplan. The workplan was approved by the PSC on April 28, 2015 for further study and analysis. It includes 37 items, including several items addressing the recent rollout of the Tree Regulations in Title 11. Other issues to be reviewed include land division requirements, lot confirmation and property line adjustment processes and FCC regulations related to radio-frequency facilities. Staff will be researching these issues over the next several months and any proposed code amendments will be presented for public review in early 2016. 

Accessory Structures is a project that streamlines the regulations for accessory structures with an aim at creating regulations that emphasize form (setbacks, height, and bulk) over function (how the building is used). The focus is on detached accessory structures associated with residential development.  Staff has recently worked with a focus group and developed an initial proposal of code amendments. These amendments will be available for public review and comment beginning in early June. 

Information for all these projects can be found at