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The City of Portland, Oregon

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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City Council enthusiastically votes to protect mobile home parks

Moving testimony from park residents, housing advocates and others convinced the Portland City Council of the importance of protecting manufactured dwellings as a type of affordable housing – and mobile home parks as strong communities.

After hearing public testimony on Wednesday, August 22, the Portland City Council voted unanimously to adopt zone changes that would create a new base zone for Portland’s manufactured dwelling parks. The intent of the zone changes is to increase housing security for people living in mobile home parks. The emergency ordinance went into effect at 12 a.m. on Thursday, August 23.

Dozens of park residents and low-income housing advocates turned out to testify to City Council. Many of them shared the sentiments of East Portland resident John Mulvey, who said, “These parks can be the only homeownership option for many people. They are multigenerational communities, where people look out for each other."

After hearing testimony from residents as well as park owners, Commissioners thanked community members who testified and praised the tactical significance of using the zoning code to protect vulnerable Portlanders.

"The City wants to support the long-term stability of these parks," Mayor Ted Wheeler said.

Commissioner Amanda Fritz was more sanguine. "These are wonderful communities, wonderful places to live, with a real sense of belonging," she said.

Why this is important

Today, roughly 3,000 households live in manufactured dwelling parks (MDP), mostly in East Portland. The zone changes will support the continued operation of these mobile home parks. They will:

  • Resolve nonconforming uses, ensuring the parks will not be converted to other uses such as single or multi-family housing.
  • Create an affordable housing bonus to incentivize the creation of affordable units.
  • Increase density at 52 MDPs, providing financial incentives for park owners and allowing more housing units to be created on these sites.
  • Expand density transfers to any other sites outside the Central City, thus monetizing the property even if additional units cannot be supported.

Together, these changes should help protect the residents of these communities from displacement.

As Anthony Knoke, a resident of Arbor Lodge Mobile Home Park and disabled veteran, said before the Council vote on August 22, “We are the poor, the elderly, the mentally ill and the disabled. In my park, there are five families that own about half the park. Whole families. Grandmothers, mothers, daughters, brothers-in-law, sisters, children. They take care of their elderly, they take care of each other, they help take care of me.”

Read media coverage of the deliberations and vote

Local media covered the project and the vote. Read their stories:

For more information, visit the Manufactured Dwelling Park Project home page.

Tell City Council what you think about the MDP Project

City Council will be accepting testimony on the Manufactured Dwelling Park Project between August 13 and August 22, 2018.

Portlanders are invited to review the Manufactured Dwelling Park Project Recommended Draft and testify to City Council. There are several ways you can testify:

In person at a public hearing
Wednesday, August 22 at 2 p.m.
Council Chambers at Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Avenue, Portland, OR 97204

Online via the Map App
Visit www.portlandmaps.com/bps/mapapp and select Manufactured Dwelling Park Project. Then follow the instructions to testify. Testifying on the Map App is as easy as sending an email.

Send a letter (must be received by August 22, 2 p.m.)
Written testimony must be received by the time of the hearing and must include your name and address. Mail to:

Portland City Council c/o Bureau of Planning and Sustainability
Attn: Manufactured Dwelling Parks Project Testimony
1900 SW 4th Ave, Suite 7100
Portland, OR 97201

For more information
Contact City staff at the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability at 503-823-0195 or mdp@portlandoregon.gov.

Have you received a City of Portland notice in the mail?

Here’s what it means and what you can do.

Welcome to the Manufactured Dwelling Parks Project online “customer service” page. We’re glad you’re here.

  • Perhaps you received a notice in the mail that looks like this, and you’re not sure exactly what it means. 
  • Or maybe you heard about proposed rules that would change the zoning of some manufactured dwelling parks (MDP).
  • Or both.

You are not alone! Owners of more than 50 MDPs recently received the mailing pictured at right from the City of Portland. This is required by state law whenever a change in the zoning could affect the value of a property — up or down. Your address was pulled from the County Assessor’s Office.

First things first

First thing to know is that these changes are proposals — not the law. We hope you’ll learn more about them and tell the Planning and Sustainability Commission (PSC) what you think. Any new rules must be adopted by City Council before they become effective. And before adoption, they are refined and changed based on public testimony, as well as PSC and City Council amendments.

Second, these proposals do not require you to sell your land or do anything to your property or the manufactured homes on it. It will not force park owners to close parks, and it will not force park owners to raise rents.

We’re here to help

We want to help you understand the proposal and how it may affect you and your property. You can:

  • Call the Helpline at 503-823-0195. Friendly staff will look up your address and tell you how the proposal would affect your property.
  • Look up your address on the Map App to find out what rules apply now and what could be proposed.
  • Send us an email at mdp@portlandoregon.gov, and a knowledgeable person will respond.

Then share your feedback with the Planning and Sustainability Commission via the Map App or in person at a public hearing

Renters matter too

You don’t have to be a property owner to weigh in on these proposals. Renters are also affected by the housing shortage and the lack of housing options. So, look and imagine how these changes might affect how you live in and experience Portland. Then share your thoughts with the Planning and Sustainability Commission.

For more information, visit the project website.

Manufactured dwelling parks might get a zone change to help park residents stay in their homes

Read about proposals for a new base zone for mobile home parks, then testify to the Planning and Sustainability Commission.

Manufactured homes provide some of the most affordable housing in Portland. It is often the housing of last resort for households that are struggling to cope with rising rents. It is also an affordable option for home ownership, as households can own their manufactured home while renting the space in a park.

Today, roughly 3,000 residents live in manufactured homes in 56 manufactured dwelling parks — or MDPs. These parks are in a variety of zones, which makes some of them vulnerable to redevelopment. These proposed changes do not prohibit closure and redevelopment of MDPs, but changing a MDP to another use will require a Comprehensive Plan map amendment and a zoning map change.

To help park residents stay in their homes, the Manufactured Dwelling Park Project will stabilize the housing situation for people living in manufactured or mobile home parks by creating a new base zone for mobile home parks.

Review the Manufactured Dwelling Parks Project Proposed Draft:


Tell the Planning and Sustainability Commission (PSC) what you think

Via the Map App …

Screen capture of the Map App

Explore the Map App

The Map App is new and improved! In addition to viewing proposed map changes for individual properties, community members (property owners and renters) can now testify directly to the Planning and Sustainability Commission via the Map App. It’s as easy as sending an email. And once you press “submit,” you can see your testimony in the Testimony Reader in real time. You can also read other people’s testimony.


At a public hearing …

You can testify directly to the Planning and Sustainability Commission at a public hearing:

Tuesday, June 12, 2018, 6:30 p.m.
PCC Southeast Campus
Community Hall Annex
2305 SE 82nd Ave
Portland, Oregon

Send a letter by June 12, 2018, to …
Portland Planning and Sustainability Commission
Manufactured Dwelling Park Project
1900 SW 4th, Suite 7100
Portland, Oregon 97201


Helpline

We’re ready for your questions. Call 503-823-0195. Interpretation services available.

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Next Steps

After the PSC hears public testimony and the “record is closed” (no more testimony – written or oral – is accepted), the PSC will hold a work session to discuss the testimony and develop any amendments they want to make to the proposals before they vote on their recommendations to the City Council. Council is expected to hold public hearings on the PSC’s Recommended Draft this summer.

For more information, visit the project website.

Creating a new zone especially for manufactured and mobile home parks

Manufactured Dwelling Park Project overview.

This project proposes a new residential multi-dwelling base zone for manufactured and mobile home parks. The proposal requires amendments to the Comprehensive Plan, Comprehensive Plan Map, Zoning Code (Title 33), Tree Code (Title 11), and the Zoning Map.

The proposed zoning changes will consolidate Manufactured Dwelling Parks (MDPs) into one new base zone in the Multi-Dwelling Residential Chapter (33.120) to create consistent land use regulations for MDPs. 

In line with Portland’s new Comprehensive Plan

Manufactured housing plays a small but important role in the affordable housing market. It is often the housing of last resort for households that are struggling to cope with rising rents. It is also an affordable option for home ownership, as some households own their manufactured home (though not always the land).

The recently adopted 2035 Comprehensive Plan established the importance of MDPs as an affordable housing option. Manufactured dwellings (including mobile homes) in manufactured dwelling parks provide some of Portland’s most affordable housing.

Policy 5.37, mobile home parks. Encourage preservation of mobile home parks as a low/moderate-income housing option. Evaluate plans and investments for potential redevelopment pressures on existing mobile home parks and impacts on park residents and protect this low/moderate-income housing option. Facilitate replacement and alteration of manufactured homes within an existing mobile home park.

There are a few parks that are not rezoned as part of this project because of conflicting land uses. These include a few RV parks, which are considered short-term lodging uses in a commercial zone. One large park (Fox Run) cannot be rezoned as part of this project because it is located in a Prime Industrial Area.

The proposed policy, code and map changes consolidate MDPs into one new base zone in the Multi-Dwelling Residential Chapter (33.120), with development standards (equivalent to the R2 zone) to address the unique nature of MDPs in terms of density, access, setbacks and landscaping requirements.

New Zone: Residential Dwelling Park definition

The Residential Manufactured Dwelling Park (MDP) zone is a low-scale multi-dwelling zone that allows manufactured dwelling parks. Allowed density may be up to 22 units per acre. Allowed housing is manufactured dwellings that are assembled off-site. Units are generally surrounded by vehicle circulation systems, pedestrian pathways and open area, which often results in lower building coverage than other multi-dwelling zones. Development is compatible with low- and medium-density single-dwelling development and multi-dwelling development. Generally, this zoning will be applied on large sites.

Learn more on the Manufactured Dwelling Park Project website.