GENERAL INFORMATION: 503-823-4000
(Amended by Ordinance No. 180330, effective August 18, 2006.) For the purpose of this Title, certain abbreviations, terms, phrases, words and their derivatives shall be construed as specified in this Chapter. “And” indicates that all connected items or provisions apply. “Or” indicates that the connected items or provisions may apply singly or in combination. Terms, words, phrases and their derivatives used, but not specifically defined in this Title, either shall have the meanings defined in Title 24, or if not defined, shall have their commonly accepted meanings.
(Amended by Ordinance Nos. 173248, 173270, 174265, 176381, 176955, 180330, 181699, 182488, 183534 and 189711, effective September 25, 2019.) The definitions of words with specific meaning in this Title are as follows:
A. Abatement of a nuisance. The act of removing, repairing, or taking other steps as may be necessary in order to remove a nuisance.
B. Accessory Structure. Any structure not intended for human occupancy which is located on residential or non-residential property. Accessory structures may be attached to or detached from the residential or non-residential structure. Examples of accessory structures include: garages, carports, sheds, and other non-dwelling buildings; decks, awnings, heat pumps, fences, trellises, flag poles, tanks, towers, exterior stairs, driveways and walkways, and other exterior structures on the property.
C. Adjacent right of way. The sidewalks and planting strips that border a specific property as well as the near half of the streets, alleys, or other public rights of way that border a specific property.
D. Apartment House. See Dwelling Classifications.
E. Approved. Meets the standards set forth by applicable Portland City Code including any applicable regulations for electric, plumbing, building, or other sets of standards included by reference in this Title.
F. Basement. The usable portion of a building which is below the main entrance story and is partly or completely below grade.
G. Boarded. Secured against entry by apparatus which is visible off the premises and is not both lawful and customary to install on occupied structures.
H. Building. Any structure used or intended to be used for supporting or sheltering any use or occupancy.
I. Building, Existing. Existing building is a building erected prior to the 1972 adoption of the building code by the City of Portland, or one for which a legal permit has been issued.
J. Ceiling Height. The clear distance between the floor and the ceiling directly above it.
K. Court. A space, open and unobstructed to the sky, located at or above grade level on a lot and bounded on three or more sides by walls of a building.
L. Dangerous Building. See Dangerous Structure.
M. Dangerous Structure. Any structure which has any of the conditions or defects described in Section 29.40.020, to the extent that life, health, property, or safety of the public or its occupants are endangered.
N. Demolition Warrant. An order from the Circuit Court authorizing the demolition of a dangerous structure as authorized by this Title, including disposal of all debris in an approved manner, and returning the lot to a clean and level condition.
O. Derelict Building. Any structure which has any of the conditions or defects described in Section 29.40.010 A.
P. Director. Is as defined in Section 24.15.070.
Q. Disabled vehicle. Any vehicle which is or appears to be inoperative, wrecked or dismantled, or partially dismantled.
R. Duplex. See Dwelling Classifications, “Two-Family Dwelling.”
S. Dwelling. Any structure containing dwelling units, including all dwelling classifications covered by the Title.
T. Dwelling Classifications. Types of dwellings covered by this Title include:
1. Single-Family Dwelling. A structure containing one dwelling unit.
2. Two-Family Dwelling. A structure containing two dwelling units, also known as a “duplex.”
3. Apartment House. Any building or portion of a building containing three or more dwelling units, which is designed, built, rented, leased, let, or hired out to be occupied for residential living purposes.
4. Hotel. Any structure containing six or more dwelling units that are intended, designed, or used for renting or hiring out for sleeping purposes by residents on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
5. Motel. For purposes of this Title, a motel shall be defined the same as a hotel.
6. Single-Room Occupancy Housing Unit. A one-room dwelling unit in a hotel providing sleeping, cooking, and living facilities for one or two persons in which some or all sanitary or cooking facilities (toilet, lavatory, bathtub or shower, kitchen sink, or cooking equipment) may be shared with other dwelling units.
7. Manufactured Dwelling. The term “manufactured dwelling” includes the following types of single-family dwellings as noted below. Manufactured Dwelling does not include any unit identified as a recreational vehicle by the manufacturer:
a. Residential Trailer. A structure constructed for movement on the public highways that has sleeping, cooking, and plumbing facilities, that is intended for human occupancy, that is being used for, or is intended to be used for, residential purposes, and that was constructed before January 1, 1962.
b. Mobile Home. A structure constructed for movement on the public highways that has sleeping, cooking, and plumbing facilities, that is intended for human occupancy, that is being used for, or is intended to be used for, residential purposes, and that was constructed between January 1, 1962, and June 15, 1976, and met the construction requirements of Oregon mobile home law in effect at the time of construction.
c. Manufactured Home. A structure constructed for movement on the public highways that has sleeping, cooking, and plumbing facilities, that is intended for human occupancy, that is being used for, or is intended to be used for, residential purposes, and that was constructed in accordance with federal manufactured housing construction and safety standards and regulations.
8. Floating Home. A floating structure used primarily as a dwelling unit. Application of this Title shall be modified for floating homes, when appropriate, by nautical application and tradition as defined in Portland City Code 28.01.020.
U. Dwelling Unit. A single unit providing complete, independent living facilities for one or more persons, including permanent provisions for living, sleeping, cooking, eating, and sanitation.
V. Eradication. Eradication is the removal of the entire nuisance plant – including the above ground portion of the plant, and the roots, shoots and seeds of the plant. The eradication provisions apply to those plants on the Nuisance Plants List, Required Eradication List.
W. Exit. (Means of Egress.) A continuous, unobstructed means of escape to a public way, including intervening doors, doorways, exit balconies, ramps, stairways, smoke-proof enclosures, horizontal exits, passageways, exterior courts and yards.
X. Exterior Property Area. The sections of residential property which are outside the exterior walls and roof of the dwelling.
Y. Extermination. The control and elimination of insects, rodents, vermin or other pests by eliminating their harborage places; by removing or making inaccessible those materials that serve as a source of food or water; or by other approved pest elimination methods.
Z. Floor Area. The area of clear floor space in a room exclusive of fixed or built-in cabinets or appliances.
AA. Guard or Guardrail. A building component or a system of building components located at or near the open sides of elevated walking surfaces that minimizes the possibility of a fall from the walking surface to a lower level.
BB. Habitable Room (Space). Habitable room or space is a structure for living, sleeping, eating or cooking. Bathrooms, toilet compartments, closets, halls, storage or utility space, and similar areas are not considered habitable space.
CC. Handrail. A horizontal or sloping rail intended for grasping by the hand for guidance or support.
DD. Hotel. See Dwelling Classifications.
EE. Immediate Danger. Any condition posing a direct immediate threat to human life, health, or safety.
FF. Infestation. The presence within or around a structure of insects, rodents, vermin or other pests to a degree that is harmful to the dwelling or its occupants.
GG. Inspection. The examination of a property by the Director for the purpose of evaluating its condition as provided by this Title.
HH. Inspection Warrant. An order from the Circuit Court authorizing a safety or health inspection or investigation to be conducted at a designated property.
II. Inspector. An authorized representative of the Director whose primary function is the inspection of properties and the enforcement of this Title.
JJ. Interested Party. Any person or entity that possesses any legal or equitable interest of record in a property including but not limited to the holder of any lien or encumbrance of record on the property.
KK. Kitchen. A room used or designed to be used for the preparation of food.
LL. Lavatory. A fixed wash basin connected to hot and cold running water and the building drain and used primarily for personal hygiene.
MM. Lawn area. Any area of a property, including vacant lots, where lawn grasses are used as ground cover, or where the ground covering vegetation does not permit passage to substantial portions of the property without walking directly on the vegetation.
NN. Lawn grass. Varieties of grass that were planted, or are commonly sold, for the purpose of maintaining a mowed lawn.
OO. Maintenance. The work of keeping property in proper condition to perpetuate its use.
PP. Maintained compost area. A small portion of a property set aside for the purpose of encouraging the rapid decomposition of yard debris and other vegetable matter into a suitable fertilizer for the soil on the property. A maintained compost area shows clear indicators that the yard debris placed there is being actively managed to encourage its rapid decomposition. Possible signs of such active management may include evidence of regular turning, a mixture of yard debris types, any woody materials present having been chopped into small sizes, and the presence of internal heat in the composting mixture. A location where yard debris is placed primarily as a means to store it or dump it without reasonable expectation of rapid decomposition is not a maintained compost area.
QQ. Manufactured Dwelling. See Dwelling Classifications.
RR. Motel. See Dwelling Classifications.
SS. Naturescape. Landscaping and gardening approaches that use predominately native plants for the purpose of creating improved outdoor habitat for native insects, birds, and mammals and reducing the need for pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and summer watering.
TT. Nuisance Abatement Warrant. An order from the Circuit Court authorizing the removal and abatement of any nuisance as authorized by this Title, including disposal of the nuisance items removed in an appropriate manner.
UU. Occupancy. The lawful purpose for which a building or part of a building is used or intended to be used.
VV. Occupant. Any person (including an owner or operator) using a building, or any part of a building, for its lawful, intended use.
WW. Operator. Any person who has charge, care or control of a building or part of a building in which dwelling units are let or offered for occupancy.
XX. Outdoor area. All parts of property that are exposed to the weather including the exterior of structures built for human occupancy. This includes, but is not limited to, vehicles parked on the property; open and accessible porches, carports, garages, and decks; accessory structures, and any outdoor storage structure.
YY. Owner. The person whose name and address is listed as the owner of the property by the County Tax Assessor on the County Assessment and Taxation records.
ZZ. Plumbing or Plumbing Fixtures. Plumbing or plumbing fixtures mean any water heating facilities, water pipes, vent pipes, garbage or disposal units, waste lavatories, bathtubs, shower baths, installed clothes-washing machines or other similar equipment, catch basins, drains, vents, or other similarly supplied fixtures, together with all connection to water, gas, sewer, or vent lines.
AAA. Property. Any real property and all improvements, buildings or structures on real property, from property line to property line.
BBB. Public right-of-way. Any sidewalk, planting strip, alley, street, or pathway, improved or unimproved, that is dedicated to public use.
CCC. Repair. The reconstruction or renewal of any part of an existing structure for the purpose of its maintenance.
DDD. Resident. Any person (including owner or operator) hiring or occupying a room or dwelling unit for living or sleeping purposes.
EEE. Residential Property. Real property and all improvements or structures on real property used or intended to be used for residential purposes including any residential structure, dwelling, or dwelling unit as defined in this chapter and any mixed-use structures which have one or more dwelling units. Hotels that are used exclusively for transient occupancy, as defined in this Title, are excluded from this definition of residential property.
FFF. Residential Rental Property. Any property within the City on which exist one or more dwelling units which are not occupied as the principal residence of the owner.
GGG. Residential Structure. Any building or other improvement or structure containing one or more dwelling units as well as any accessory structure. This includes any dwelling as defined in this Title.
HHH. Shall or Must. As used in this Title, is mandatory.
III. Single-Family Dwelling. See Dwelling Classifications.
JJJ. Single-Room Occupancy Housing Unit. See Dwelling Classifications.
KKK. Sink. A fixed basin connected to hot and cold running water and a drainage system and primarily used for the preparation of food and the washing of cooking and eating utensils.
LLL. Sleeping Room. Any room designed, built, or intended to be used as a bedroom as well as any other room used for sleeping purposes.
MMM. Stagnant Water. Any impoundment of water in which there is no appreciable flow of water through the impoundment and the level of water does not vary during any 48-hour period.
NNN. Street. Includes any street, avenue, boulevard, alley, lane, bridge, bicycle path, road, walk, public thoroughfare or public way, and any land over which a right of way has been obtained, or granted and accepted for any purpose of public travel, including all area between property lines, and area dedicated to street use.
OOO. Structure. That which is built or constructed, an edifice or building of any kind, or any piece or work artificially built up or composed of parts joined together in some definite manner.
PPP. Summary Abatement. Abatement of a nuisance by the City, or by a contractor hired by the City, without obligation to give prior notice of the abatement action to the owner or occupant of the property.
QQQ. Supplied. Installed, furnished or provided by the owner or operator.
RRR. Swimming Pool. Any structure intended for swimming or recreational bathing that contains water over 24 inches deep. This includes in-ground, above ground and on-ground swimming pools, hot-tubs and spas.
SSS. Toilet. A flushable plumbing fixture connected to running water and a drainage system and used for the disposal of human waste.
TTT. Toilet Compartment. A room containing only a toilet or only a toilet and lavatory.
UUU. Transient Occupancy. Occupancy of a dwelling unit in a hotel where the following conditions are met:
1. Occupancy is charged on a daily basis and is not collected more than six days in advance;
2. The lodging operator provides maid and linen service daily or every two days as part of the regularly charged cost of occupancy;
3. The period of occupancy does not exceed 30 days; and
4. If the occupancy exceeds five days, the resident has a business address or a residence other than at the hotel.
VVV. Two-Family Dwelling. See Dwelling Classifications.
WWW. Unsecured. Any structure in which doors, windows, or apertures are open or broken so as to allow access by unauthorized persons.
XXX. Vehicle. Any device in, on, upon, or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a public highway, except a device moved by human power or used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks, including but not limited to a body, an engine, a transmission, a frame, or other major part.
YYY. Warehousing. Securing a structure against vandalism, deterioration, and unauthorized entry pending its return to active use or occupancy.
ZZZ. Yard. An open, unoccupied space, other than a court, unobstructed from the ground to the sky, and located between a structure and the property line of the lot on which the structure is situated.