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The City of Portland, Oregon

Planning and Sustainability

Innovation. Collaboration. Practical Solutions.

Phone: 503-823-7700

Curbside Hotline: 503-823-7202

1900 SW 4th Ave, Suite 7100, Portland, OR 97201

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What’s the main difference between the current zones and the proposed zones?

The new zones and related regulations more directly guide the mass and form of buildings, require building heights to transition to the scale of adjacent residential zones, provide incentives for public benefits such as affordable housing, require outdoor space for residential units, call for landscaping or green elements as part of development in most zones, and require ground-floor commercial uses in the core areas of centers. Below is a summary of fundamental changes to the commercial mixed use zones:

  • Creates four new zones: CM1, 3 stories, 35’; CM2 and CE, 4-5 stories, 45’-55’; and CM3, 6-7 stories, 65’-75’.
  • Manages bulk of development by setting new floor area ratios (FAR) for each of the zones.
  • Provides incentives for public benefits (affordable housing and affordable commercial space) through bonuses that earn additional floor area.
  • Reduces building mass by articulating large façades and limiting building length.
  • Enhances street-level environment by increasing ground-floor window requirements.
  • Requires outdoor area for new residential units.
  • Improves transition to neighboring residential areas through a height “step down.”
  • Sets building coverage and landscaping standards by place types (“pattern areas”).
  • Provides flexible street setbacks to allow for gathering spaces.
  • Addresses commercial-residential conflicts through landscaping and setbacks.
  • Ensures active ground floor uses, such as retail, in the core commercial areas of centers.
  • Allows added height and development flexibility on large sites via a planned development review.
  • Requires neighborhood notification of most new development.

MUZ Model

For complete details, review the Mixed Use Zones Project Proposed Draft, Section VI. Amendments to the Zoning Code.