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Planning and Sustainability

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2035 Comprehensive Plan goes Live!

New long range plan for Portland goes into effect, making new land use policies, maps and zoning, and public facilities plans official.

Portland’s new 2035 Comprehensive Plan went into effect this afternoon at 1 p.m. The 20-year plan includes new land use policies, land use maps and zoning, and new public facilities plans. This was the largest overhaul of Portland’s land use plan since the City’s original Comprehensive was adopted in 1980. 

The plan was adopted by City Council in June 2016, with a delayed effective date to allow time for state review. The Oregon Department of Land Conservation and Development (DLCD) issued an order in December approving the plan. In March the Oregon Land Conservation and Development Commission (LCDC) voted to reject six appeals that had been filed to block elements of the plan.

Implementation plans in effect

Corresponding revisions to zoning maps and codes also took effect today. The major changes include new mixed use and commercial zoning, new campus institutional zoning at major colleges and hospitals, and tighter protections for prime industrial land. 

In total, 15 percent of the city’s land area was rezoned. New community involvement procedures also took effect, placing greater emphasis on involving renters, communities of color, immigrants and others who have not typically participated in land use decisions. 

First amendments adopted, too

City Council also voted today on the first amendments to the plan. A package of largely technical code and map revisions were made to resolve issues that had been identified after June 2016. The Council also took a vote on the Central City 2035 Plan, which will take effect next month.

Although the plan is now in place, LCDC’s decision may still be appealed to the Court of Appeals. State agencies have approved the plan, but it will not be officially “acknowledged” until further appeal opportunities have been exhausted. Until then, a direct evaluation of conformance with state land use goals will be required with some local land use decisions.

City launches long-range planning effort for the South Reach of the Willamette River

Share your ideas to improve and enhance recreation, natural resources and nearby neighborhoods at River Plan / South Reach events, including a June 9 Visioning Workshop.

people putting paddle boat in the riverThe Willamette River area south of the Central City is a special place. Great neighborhoods surround the river, with a diverse mix of riverfront residential areas that include single-family homes, apartments, condominiums and floating homes. Hundreds of acres of parks, open spaces and natural areas are accessible for people to enjoy. And resident and migrating fish and wildlife are plentiful year-round.

Planning for the future of the South Reach

The Bureau of Planning and Sustainability is beginning the development of a long-range plan for this unique part of Portland, known as the Willamette River / South Reach. In June, project staff will start public engagement efforts with interested community members to understand opportunities (e.g., recreational, environmental), identify issues to be addressed, and envision the future of the South Reach in Portland and unincorporated Multnomah County.

The first River Plan / South Reach event will be a “visioning workshop” on June 9, 2018. Please join us for this exciting opportunity to help define the future of the South Reach. Participants will learn about this area of the river and the newly launched planning project. You will be able to talk with other community members and planners as well as share your ideas for the future of the South Reach riverfront area.

People bird watching over the riverVisioning Workshop

Saturday, June 9, 2018
9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Llewellyn Elementary School, Cafeteria
6301 SE 14th Avenue
Transit: #19, #70

Other upcoming river-related events include:

Walk/Roll along the Willamette Greenway Trail

June 7, 2018*
6 – 8 p.m.
Willamette Park, picnic tables south of boat ramp
SW Macadam Avenue and Nebraska Street
Transit: #35 (limited services – #43, #36, #99)

Enjoy a stroll along this beautiful stretch of the Willamette riverfront while talking with City planners and community members about valued resources, activities, issues and opportunities in the South Reach. The trail is ADA accessible for wheelchair users who want to roll with us.

Paddle the Willamette

June 3, 2018*
10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Willamette Park, boat ramp (new location)
SW Macadam Avenue and Nebraska Street
Transit: #35

Bring your boat and paddle along the riverfront to explore the unique natural beauty of the South Reach. City Planner Jeff Caudill will highlight key issues and engage paddlers in conversation about the River Plan / South Reach.

*These events are part of Great Blue Heron Week.

Existing Conditions report coverWhat is the state of the South Reach? Existing Conditions Report tells all.

City planners have been studying the South Reach and have compiled a Draft Existing Conditions Report. Here’s some of what they discovered.

Fun facts about the South Reach area:

  • There are 305 acres of public parks, natural areas and open spaces.
  • This is the only section of Willamette River in the City of Portland that has floating home moorages.
  • Oaks Bottom is the only designated wildlife refuge in Portland.
  • Federally listed threatened and endangered species include Chinook, Coho and Sockeye Salmon, and Steelhead Trout; Pacific Lamprey and Cutthroat Trout are federal species of concern.
  • Oaks Amusement Park is one of the oldest amusement parks operating in the country, opening in 1905.

Read the draft report and tell us what you think. Staff welcomes public comments until July 16, 2018.

For more information, visit the project website or contact Debbie Bischoff,, 503-823-6946, or Jeff Caudill,, 503-823-4572.

Heads up! Portland's new Comp Plan goes into effect on Thursday, May 24 at 1 p.m.

The current Zoning Code and Zoning Maps will be replaced with new copies Thursday afternoon/evening; new code and maps should be live by midnight, May 24

With the 2035 Comprehensive Plan scheduled to take effect on Thursday, May 24 at 1 p.m., the bureaus of Planning and Sustainability and Development Services are working to ensure a smooth transition. 

As part of the transition process, all of the amended Zoning Maps and Zoning Code pages are being updated, as well as a variety of online resources. 

The BDS Permit Center is typically closed Thursday afternoons, which allows City staff a few hours to make the transition. Zoning Code page updates will occur over several hours on Thursday afternoon. While not all of the Zoning Code pages were amended with the Comprehensive Plan Update, users of the Zoning Code should note that all code pages are being reprinted in an updated format. New zoning will be available on Portland Maps at midnight on May 24, ready for business on Friday, May 25.   

Visitors to the BPS website on Friday will notice a number of other changes, in addition to new codes and maps. This includes:

  • A new streamlined 2035 Comprehensive Plan website that will make it easier to locate key resources. 
  • A new interactive map tool to provide easier browsing of the Zoning Map and Comprehensive Plan map.
  • Final reports for the Early Implementation Project, Map Refinement Project and Code Reconciliation Projects will be moved to the BPS Documents Library and will still be available as a resource for those who need to research what changed. 
  • The old 1980 Comprehensive Plan is also being moved to the BPS Document Library, and will remain available as an historical document.
  • For those who need to research the old zoning maps, there is a tool for that

With all of these changes, we suggest you refresh your browser history on Friday! This story will be updated with any new links after the transition is complete. 

City Council poised to adopt Central City 2035

Council to consider a few final amendments and prepare for final adoption

At 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 24, City Council will begin the final adoption process for CC2035. While some of the actions Commissioners take will be primarily procedural, they will also consider a few final amendments to the long-range plan for the Central City.

Most of the amendments are minor and technical items that staff identified while preparing the final documents; however, one amendment is to increase height and FAR in the New Chinatown/Japantown Historic District.

Read the amendments and the Revised Recommended Draft:  

How did we get here?

The CC2035 Plan has been under development for several years. This is the final step in a public process that involved thousands of Portlanders. The new plan is built on foundational studies and interim plans, including:

  • A Concept Plan
  • Individual plans for the N/NE, West and SE quadrants of the Central City
  • A Bonus and Transfer study
  • The Natural Resource and Scenic Resource Inventory
  • The Willamette Greenway Inventory
  • The Willamette River Urban Design Concept, which led to the development of a Swimming Study and the Eastbank Riverfront Plan. 

Numbers to note

Here are some “fun facts” for the final CC2035 planning process:

  • The Planning and Sustainability Commission held two public hearings and 12 work sessions.  
  • City Council held seven public hearings and 14 meetings/worksessions.
  • In all, more than 1,600 people testified or submitted written testimony on both the Proposed (760 people) and Recommended (972 people) drafts of the Plan.

This background information and public input served as guidance for the development of the Central City 2035 Plan as it evolved over several iterations:  

  • CC2035 Discussion Draft (published February 2016)
  • CC2035 Proposed Draft (published June 2016)
  • CC2035 Recommended Draft (published June 2017)
  • CC2035 Revised Recommended Draft (published May 2018)

This final Revised Recommended Draft incorporates the amendments that City Council made to the plan since they began their review in September 2017.

Here’s the vote!

City Council will be voting to adopt the following documents as they prepare to vote to adopt CC2035 on May 24:

Volume 1: Goals and Policies
The long-range vision for the Central City.

Volume 2A: Zoning Code and Map Amendments
Regulations to implement the plan.

Volume 2B: Transportation System Plan Amendments
Transportation-related policies, performance targets, and street classification maps.

Volume 3A: Scenic Resources Protection Plan
Scenic inventory, analysis and results.

Volume 3B: Willamette River Central Reach Natural Resources Protection Plan (no amendments)
Natural Resource Inventory for the Willamette River Central Reach.

Volume 4: Background Materials (no amendments)
Prior plans and research provided for reference.

Volume 5: Implementation Plan
The City's targets and the actions it will take to implement the Plan.

Volume 6: Public Involvement (no amendments)
Information about the public involvement process that gave rise to the Recommended Draft.

Next Steps

At 2 p.m. on Wednesday, June 6, City Council will take their final vote to adopt the plan. (Cheers!) This new plan and all its associated regulations are expected to go into effect on July 9, 2018.

A new plan to combat displacement in N/NE Portland

Recently, Nan Stark (North/Northeast district liaison) worked with Portland Community Reinvestment Initiative, Inc. (PCRI) to develop and launch the Pathway 1000 Implementation Plan.

By now, many Portlanders are familiar with the story of African-American displacement from N/NE Portland. From the Vanport Flood and I-5 urban renewal — both of which laid waste to vibrant neighborhoods — to gentrification of the Albina District and surrounds, a close-knit community was set awash on literal and figurative waves of change.

As well, federally sanctioned redlining and predatory lending practices* prevented many Black residents and other people of color from purchasing homes in Albina. So the district — once home to the highest concentration of Black Portlanders — is now a predominantly White and rapidly-gentrifying neighborhood.  

A right to return home

Portland Community Reinvestment Initiative Inc. (PCRI) is a local nonprofit, dedicated to building avenues to stability and prosperity for Portlanders of color by making homeownership and affordable housing a possibility for them. The organization recently celebrated the release of the Pathway 1000 plan, an ambitious strategy to bring Black and other Portlanders of color back to the Albina district.  

The plan lays out a path to create 1,000 affordable housing units for African Americans in N/NE Portland over the next 10 years. At least 800 of the newly constructed homes will be sold to new homeowners.

“The overarching goal of Pathway 1000 is to address generational poverty of Black residents and others displaced from N/NE Portland by providing homeownership and rental housing opportunities that create wealth and stabilize families as well as provide living wage jobs for current and future residents of the community,” states PCRI’s Pathway 1000 Implementation Plan.

Partnership with district planner

Nan Stark is the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability’s District Liaison for N/NE Portland. Over the past three years, she has been working closely with PCRI Executive Director Maxine Fitzpatrick and her staff, as well as several community partners, as PCRI created the Pathway 1000 Implementation Plan. Nan acted as the project manager for a Metro grant to develop the plan. She brought in staff from City bureaus and Portland State University to act as a technical advisory committee to assist PCRI and its collaborators as they developed the plan. She will continue to be a resource as the Pathway 1000 plan is implemented, connecting PCRI and its partners with City resources.

Nan says that “through the Pathway 1000 Implementation Plan, PCRI has chosen a very focused path toward healing some of the hurt caused by the rapid gentrification and displacement that happened in inner North and Northeast Portland over the past decade. The Plan is about creating home ownership and housing stabilization opportunities for members of the community who have been displaced, and the wealth generation that can happen as a result.”

The future of district planning

Nan’s work with PCRI is an example of the direction that district planning is going. District planners are developing deeper and more meaningful relationships with community-based organizations, making local government more accessible to people who are often not engaged in dialogs related to land use and community development. In Nan’s words, “it’s an honor to be able to engage with the community and give people the opportunity to lead the conversation.”

Now that the longer range 2035 Comprehensive Plan and Central City 2035 Plan are in the bag, BPS is exploring ways to do more of this kind of targeted district planning and community development. Stay tuned!

More about PCRI

Established in 1992, PCRI acquired endangered homes, helped secure conventional mortgages to buy them back, and retained other properties as long-term affordable rentals. It exists to protect and maintain affordable, high quality, single-family homes scattered throughout N/NE Portland. The nonprofit also manages and is expanding a portfolio of multiplexes so that underserved Portlanders have affordable housing options within the community.

* Redlining was the practice of marking areas on a map (in red) where banks were forbidden to lend money to people of color to buy a house. Banks practiced predatory lending on people of color but imposing unreasonably high interest rates and unfairly burdensome terms.