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The City of Portland, Oregon

Planning and Sustainability

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Plan Districts

Albina Community Plan District (AC)

The Albina Community plan district implements the Albina Community Plan. The plan district’s provisions are intended to ensure that new higher density commercial and industrial developments do not overwhelm nearby residential areas. Infill housing compatibility and affordability is encouraged by eliminating off-street parking requirements for small multi-dwelling housing projects. The plan district’s provisions also encourage the development of new housing along Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard by allowing new housing projects to include ground level commercial uses that orient to King Boulevard.

Cascade Station/Portland International Center Plan District (CP)

The Cascade Station/Portland International Center (CS/PIC) plan district regulations encourage the development of a commercially viable mix of transit-supportive and pedestrian-sensitive office, hotel, entertainment, retail and industrial employment centers while protecting significant environmental and cultural features of the area. The development of these uses on an intense scale fosters a vibrant, mixed-use environment served by two major regional transportation facilities: the Portland International Airport and the Airport Light Rail.

Central City Plan District (CC)

The Central City plan district implements the Central City Plan and other plans applicable to the Central City area. These other plans include the Downtown Plan, the River District Plan, the University District Plan, and the Central City Transportation Management Plan. The Central City plan district implements portions of these plans by adding code provisions which address special circumstances existing in the Central City area. 

Central City and South Auditorium Plan Districts (CCSA)

This area is an overlapping of the Central City Plan District and the South Auditorium Plan District. Please see the individual sections for each plan district for regulations.

Columbia South Shore Plan District (SS)

The Columbia South Shore plan district regulations encourage the development of the Columbia South Shore as an industrial employment center that is intended to attract a diversity of employment opportunities. The plan district regulations also protect significant environmental and scenic resources and maintain the capacity of the area infrastructure to accommodate future development. Special street setbacks and landscaping standards enhance and strengthen the image of the plan district, and create a more formal landscape design and provide continuity along Airport Way. Development standards for the southern portion of the district (Southern Industrial subdistrict) reflect the City’s standards for general industrial areas.

East Corridor Plan District (EC)

The East Corridor plan district includes three light rail stations and three Pedestrian Districts. The area is targeted to receive a significant share of the city’s growth. It is envisioned that future development will transform the areas surrounding the light rail stations into vibrant mixed-use areas of retail, office, and housing with a high level of pedestrian amenities. Lower density residential and commercial development will continue to surround the Pedestrian Districts.

These regulations:

  • Encourage new housing and mixed use development and expansions of existing development to promote the corridor’s growth and light rail transit ridership;
  • Promote compatibility between private and public investments along the light rail system through enhanced building design and site layout standards;
  • Implement the objectives of the City’s Pedestrian Districts to enhance the pedestrian experience and access to and from light rail service; and
  • Encourage connectivity for vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians on large sites.

Gateway Plan District (GA)

The Gateway plan district provides for an intensive level of mixed-use development including retail, office, and housing to support light rail transit stations and the Regional Center at Gateway. This is accomplished by:

  • Encouraging new development and expansions of existing development to promote the district’s growth and light rail transit ridership;
  • Promoting compatibility between private and public investments along the light rail system through building design and site layout standards which provide safe, pleasant, and convenient access for pedestrians to the light rail transit station; and
  • Requiring that new development and expansions of existing development create attractive and convenient facilities for pedestrians and transit patrons to visit, live, work, and shop.

Glendoveer Plan District (GL)

The regulations of the Glendoveer plan district are intended to ensure that the special development patterns fostered by Ascot zoning and succeeding zoning provisions established by Multnomah County are protected and continued under City zoning regulations following annexation.

Guild’s Lake Industrial Sanctuary Plan District (GS)

The Guild’s Lake Industrial Sanctuary plan district fosters the preservation and growth of this premier industrial area adjacent to Portland’s central city. The plan district’s large number of well-established industrial firms are dependent on the area’s multimodal transportation system, including marine, rail, and trucking facilities, and on the ability of area streets to accommodate truck movements. Because of its proximity to inner-city neighborhoods with high concentrations of commercial and residential uses, the Guild’s Lake Industrial Sanctuary is particularly vulnerable to impacts from, and redevelopment to, nonindustrial uses. The provisions of the plan district recognize that the displacement of industrial uses by inappropriate nonindustrial uses potentially threatens the integrity of this district and investments in public and private infrastructure. The provisions of this chapter protect the area from incompatible uses which threaten the district’s integrity, stability and vitality and compromise its transportation system.

Hayden Island (HI)

The regulations in this chapter will preserve and enhance both the character and opportunities of Hayden Island to:

  • Create a transportation network that provides for all modes, and allows people to easily move from one mode to another;
  • Focus higher intensity, mixed-use development near the Light Rail Station;
  • Provide opportunities for a range of housing types, and encourage mixed-use development, including commercial uses, to serve the residential uses;
  • Ensure transitions between residential and nonresidential zones and neighborhoods; and
  • Recognize the current function of the Jantzen Beach Super Center as an auto-oriented shopping mall and its long-term potential for more intense development that is less auto-oriented and more pedestrian-friendly resulting from major investments in the transportation system.

The environmental zoning that applies to much of the plan district will preserve and restore the unique and valuable natural resources of the island, such as the shallow water habitat.

Healy Heights Plan District (HH)

The Healy Heights Plan District provides additional regulations for the conditional use review of Radio Frequency Transmission Facilities in a unique situation. Healy Heights has a concentrated and complex array of radio frequency sources and towers located within a developed single-family neighborhood. The plan district protects the established character of the neighborhood while ensuring that the broadcast and communications industry at this location remains viable. This plan district achieves its purpose through:

  • Control of aesthetic impacts through limitations on additions to or expansion of broadcast towers;
  • Improving the opportunity for communication between the users of broadcast facilities and surrounding residents;
  • Requiring mitigation of the effects of radio frequency interference to the extent practicable; and
  • Reaffirming the importance of Healy Heights to the Radio Frequency Transmission industry and to the people served by that industry.

Hillsdale Plan District (HD)

The regulations of the Hillsdale plan district promote compatibility between existing and new residential and commercial development and support the Hillsdale Town Center.

Hollywood Plan District (HW)

The Hollywood plan district provides for an urban level of mixed-use development including commercial, office, housing, and recreation. Specific objectives of the plan district include strengthening Hollywood’s role as a commercial and residential center, and promoting the use of light rail, bus transit, and walking. These regulations:

  • Enhance business and economic vitality;
  • Promote housing and mixed-use development;
  • Discourage auto-oriented uses and developments and direct the placement of auto-oriented uses and developments away from the area of most intense activity;
  • Reinforce the connection between the Hollywood Transit Center and the business core of the Hollywood District;
  • Enhance the pedestrian experience; and
  • Enhance the character of buildings in the plan district.

Johnson Creek Basin Plan District (JC)

The Johnson Creek Basin plan district provides for the safe, orderly, and efficient development of lands which are subject to a number of physical constraints, including significant natural resources, steep and hazardous slopes, flood plains, wetlands, and the lack of streets, sewers, and water services. At certain locations, the density of development is limited by applying special regulations to new land division proposals. In addition, restrictions are placed on all new land uses and activities to reduce stormwater runoff, provide groundwater recharge, reduce erosion, enhance water quality, and retain and enhance native vegetation throughout the plan district. At other locations, development is encouraged and mechanisms are included that provide relief from environmental restrictions.

This plan district is intended to be used in conjunction with environmental zoning placed on significant resources and functional values in the Johnson Creek basin, to protect resources and functional values in conformance with Goal 8 of the Comprehensive Plan and Statewide Planning Goal 5.

Kenton Plan District (KN)

The Kenton plan district use regulations foster a vital retail corridor along Denver Avenue. The Kenton plan district development standards ensure that the design of new buildings, and modifications to existing buildings, are compatible with the historic character of the area. These regulations also ensure a pleasant, safe and efficient environment for pedestrians along the Denver Avenue commercial corridor and near the light rail station. Together, these regulations:

  • Enhance the commercial character along Denver Avenue by restricting industrial uses;
  • Discourage auto-oriented uses and development; and
  • Encourage retail uses in the historic storefront buildings along Denver Avenue.

Laurelhurst/Eastmoreland Plan District (LA & EM)

The regulations of the Laurelhurst/Eastmoreland plan district enforce the special setback requirements of Ordinances 70343 and 68522. This plan district maintains the established character of the Laurelhurst and Eastmoreland areas, characterized by homes with larger than normal building setbacks from the street.

Macadam Plan District (MA)

The Macadam plan district implements the Macadam Corridor Study. The plan district contains a set of regulations designed to preserve and promote the unique character of the Macadam area. In addition to special development standards for the district, the regulations restrict auto-oriented uses and development, limit signs, allow for future light rail, and provide view corridors to the Willamette river.

Marquam Hill Plan District (MH)

The regulations of the Marquam Hill Plan support the preservation and enhancement of natural open space areas, existing scenic views, and neighborhood livability, while encouraging an intense level of institutional development including a dynamic mix of medical research, education, and patient care facilities that contribute to Marquam Hill’s distinctive character. The plan district regulations enhance the character and features of the district through the implementation of development standards and design guidelines that preserve scenic resources and create a sense of place within the developed portions of the district through a network of plazas, courtyards, and formal open areas connected by a well-designed pedestrian circulation system. The regulations also encourage the development of additional patient care, medical research, and academic facilities and long-term traffic and parking management plans.

North Cully Plan District (CY)

The regulations of the North Cully Plan District are intended to ensure compatible redevelopment of certain large parcels as set forth in the Cully Neighborhood Plan. These parcels are developed with gravel pits, a number of smaller, older single family dwellings and trailer parks with redevelopment probable in the next two decades. Properties should be developed in a cohesive pattern in order to encourage compatible development with the neighborhood to the south. North Cully Development review is a master plan review which will ensure compatibility and cohesive design.

North Interstate Plan District (NI)

The North Interstate plan district provides for an urban level of mixed-use development to support the MAX line and the surrounding neighborhoods by encouraging development that increases neighborhood economic vitality, amenities, and services and successfully accommodates additional density. These standards:

  • Implement urban design concepts of the North Interstate Corridor Plan;
  • Help ease transitions between new high-density development and the existing, lowdensity neighborhoods; and
  • Enhance the pedestrian experience.

Northwest Hills Plan District (NH)

The Northwest Hills plan district protects sites with sensitive and highly valued resources and functional values. The portions of the plan district that include the Balch Creek Watershed and the Forest Park Subdistrict contain unique, high quality resources and functional values that require additional protection beyond that of the Environmental overlay zone. The plan district also promotes the orderly development of the Skyline subdistrict while assuring that adequate services are available to support development. These regulations provide the higher level of protection necessary for the plan district area. The transfer of development rights option reduces development pressure on protected sites while containing safeguards to protect receiving sites.

Northwest Plan District (NP)

The Northwest plan district provides for an urban level of mixed-use development including commercial, office, housing, and employment. Objectives of the plan district include strengthening the area’s role as a commercial and residential center. The regulations of this chapter:

  • Promote housing and mixed-use development;
  • Discourage auto-oriented developments;
  • Enhance the pedestrian experience; and
  • Encourage a mixed-use environment and transit supportive levels of development in the area near the streetcar alignment.

Pleasant Valley Plan District (PV)

The Pleasant Valley plan district implements the Comprehensive Plan’s goals, policies and action measures for Pleasant Valley; creates an urban community as defined by the Comprehensive Plan; and, furthers the Pleasant Valley vision to integrate land use, transportation, and natural resources. Pleasant Valley as a whole is intended to be a community made up of neighborhoods, a town center, neighborhood centers, employment districts, parks and schools, open spaces and trails, a range of transportation choices, and extensive protection, restoration and enhancement of the natural resources. Portions of the Pleasant Valley area will be in the City of Portland and portions will be in the City of Gresham. The purpose of the Pleasant Valley plan district includes integrating the significant natural resources into a new, urban community.

Portland International Airport Plan District (PA)

The purpose of this plan district is to address the social, economic, and environmental aspects of growth and development at Portland International Airport (PDX). PDX is a unique land use within the City and requires tailored regulations to address wildlife hazards and impacts to transportation and natural resources. The plan district provides flexibility to the Port of Portland—owner of PDX—to address a constantly changing aviation industry, while addressing the broader community impacts of operating an airport in an urban context.

The regulations of this plan district protect significant identified environmental resources consistent with the requirements of airport operations, while maintaining or enhancing the capacity of public and private infrastructure within and serving the district. Additionally, the regulations protect significant archaeological features of the area.

The plan district has two subdistricts: the Airport Subdistrict and the Middle Columbia Slough Subdistrict.

The Airport Subdistrict includes the airport passenger terminal, terminal roadway area, airfield, and other support facilities most of which are owned and operated by the Port of Portland. Also included are other airport-related uses which are generally tenants of the Port. Within the Airport Subdistrict are two unmapped areas known as airside and landside (See Chapter 33.910, Definitions). Airside includes an area defined by a perimeter security fence and the airside uses associated with the airfield which includes runways, taxiways, lighting, etc. The perimeter security fence is not mapped since the fence may move over time due to federal and operational requirements. An area outside the fence—the runway protection zone—is also part of Airside. The airfield and airside uses are also treated differently due to federal regulations. Landside includes the passenger terminal, airport access roadways, parking lots, aircraft maintenance facilities, cargo hangars, maintenance buildings, fire and rescue facilities, and other similar types of development. Also within the Airport Subdistrict is the SW Quadrant Subarea, shown on Map 565-1.

The remainder of the plan district is the Middle Columbia Slough Subdistrict. The primary purpose of the regulations for this subdistrict is to address the unique circumstances related to mitigation and enhancement for development within the Environmental Overlay Zones.

Portland International Raceway Plan District (PI)

The purpose of this plan district is to preserve and enhance the special character and opportunities of this unique area. This plan district recognizes existing uses and their impacts, and works to minimize the impacts of future development. The PIR plan district is part of West Delta Park. West Delta Park, and the plan district in particular has a unique and varied character. The activities currently occurring in the park, coupled with the characteristics of the land itself and the location, are unlike any other park in the region. The natural setting of this plan district is a broad open, natural area with unusual expansive vistas of the Columbia River flood plain. In contrast, many of the City’s other large areas of Open Space zoning contain hilly and forested terrain.

Powell Boulevard Plan District (PB)

The regulations of the Powell Boulevard plan district are intended to buffer residences from the noise and traffic of Powell Boulevard, to promote commercial redevelopment opportunities, and to ensure the smooth flow of traffic on Powell Boulevard. The regulations of this chapter support the intent of the highway improvements which widened Powell Boulevard and created public off-street parking. The Powell Boulevard Environmental Impact Statement required noise protection for the adjacent residential neighborhood, the encouragement of commercial opportunities and the preservation of highway traffic flows.

Rocky Butte Plan District (RB)

Rocky Butte has been identified as an important natural resource which includes a scenic drive and scenic views from the roadway and from the top of the butte. The regulations relating to Rocky Butte are intended to preserve and enhance the forested areas of the butte, views from the butte, historic architectural elements, and the natural scenic qualities of the butte.

St. Johns Plan District (SJ)

The St. Johns plan district provides for an urban level of mixed-use development including commercial, employment, office, housing, institutional, and recreation uses. Specific objectives of the plan district include strengthening St. Johns' role as the commercial and civic center of the North Portland peninsula. These regulations:

  • Stimulate business and economic vitality;
  • Promote housing and mixed-use development;
  • Discourage auto-oriented uses and development;
  • Enhance the pedestrian environment;
  • Enhance the character of buildings in the plan district; and
  • Support the Willamette greenway and opportunities to celebrate the Willamette River as a unique element of the urban environment.

South Auditorium Plan District (SA)

The South Auditorium plan district protects the unique character of the former South Auditorium urban renewal district. The district is an award-winning development, with its high-rise buildings, generous setbacks and landscaping, numerous plazas and fountains, and elaborate pedestrian walkway system. Maintenance of this character is achieved by requiring additional landscaping requirements, the preservation of existing trees, screening of rooftop equipment, and additional sign regulations which limit the type, number, and size of signs.

Swan Island Plan District (SI)

The Swan Island Plan District is intended to foster the continuation and growth of the Portland Ship Repair Yard. The shipyard is a primary industry dependent on the Willamette River. Activities occurring in the shipyard cover a range that runs from heavy industrial to temporary housing for the crews of ships undergoing repair or refitting. The variety of sizes and types of ships and industrial construction projects attracted to the shipyard frequently requires that the area be reconfigured. The provisions of the Swan Island Plan District are intended to foster the growth and competitiveness of this unique waterfront basic industry. The provisions of this plan district replace the Swan Island Development Program’s provisions affecting the transportation and circulation components of the island’s development within the plan district.