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Planners hold neighborhood meetings to discuss “Zoning Review Areas” as part of the Residential and Open Space Zoning Map Update

In some residential areas of Portland, the Comprehensive Plan land use designation and the current zoning have been different from each other for decades — many since the 1980 Comprehensive Plan took effect. As part of the Residential and Open Space Zoning Map Update, the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) is evaluating many of these areas to determine whether to reconcile them or leave them alone.

Dubbed “Zoning Review Areas,” BPS staff have been holding community conversations about the criteria and process for evaluating these areas. Notes from these meetings are now online, along with copies of slide presentations that were given where time allowed.

Read more about the Zoning Review Areas and see the meeting notes here


The land use designation in the Comp Plan Map reflects the long-term vision for the appropriate use and density of development for a given area. The zoning determines more specifically what a property owner is currently allowed to build.

Situations where the two are different may reflect infrastructure or development conditions that were present several decades ago — but which may have changed significantly since then. In other cases, it may be that constraints on development remain, such as landslide risk or lack of sidewalks. These areas are being evaluated based on the current understanding of natural hazards and infrastructure constraints and conditions, as well as recommended policies about proximity to centers or corridors.

More links and commenting

Read more background about the Zoning Review Areas in Section 5 of the Residential and Open Space Zoning Update Discussion Draft.

Check out the Zoning Review Areas and leave comments on the Map App.

Have a comment about the process for the Zoning Review Areas or another aspect of the Residential and Open Space Zoning Map Update? Send an email to before Dec. 21, 2015. Your feedback will be considered as staff develops the Proposed Draft, which will be released later this winter for written and oral testimony.