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The City of Portland, Oregon

Community & Civic Life

Promote the common good

Main: 503-823-4519

City/County Info: 503-823-4000

TDD: 503-823-6868

1120 SW 5th Ave, Suite 114, Portland, OR 97204

ABCs of Land Use

The ABCs of Land Use is a free workshop designed for neighborhood activists, business association members and land use volunteers who are interested in learning:

  • the basics of how the City of Portland develops land use policies and plans;
  • how the development review process works for individual development projects;
  • how community members and neighborhood associations can take action and have a voice in these processes.

This page provides links to the PowerPoint presentation and handouts from the most recent ABCs of Land Use Workshop, presented on October 18, 2014 at the Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods (NECN).

If you are interested in participating in or being notified of future ABCs of Land Use workshops, contact Paul Leistner, ONI neighborhood program coordinator, at, or 503-823-5284, or your neighborhood district coalition office.

The resources available on this page include:

ABCs of Land Use PowerPoint Presentation (revised Feb 2018)

Neighborhood System Resources

Land Use Planning Structures and Processes

Development Review Standards and Processes

If you have questions or suggestions for how to make this resource more useful, contact Paul Leistner, ONI neighborhood program coordinator, at, or 503-823-5284.




Flow Chart of Land Use Plan Development--Legislative Process (PDF)

Flow chart that shows the steps in the "legislative process" to develop a new land use plan.

Flowchart of Oregon Land Use Planning Structure (PDF)

Flowchart that shows the relationship between Oregon State Planning Goals, Metro regional 2040 Plan, City of Portland Comp Plan, and City of Portland area and neighborhood plans.

Land Use Resources, Contacts, and Support (PDF)

Helpful City government and neighborhood system resources for more information and help on planning and development review.

Table of Process Requirements for Different Types of Land Use Reviews (PDF)

Table of neighborhood notice and other requirements and timelines for Type I, II, IIx, III, IV land use reviews, and Comp Plan Map Amendments and Goal Exceptions

Development Standards and other Zoning Requirements

Overview of the Zoning Code, and development standards (what development is allowed) in individual Base Zones, Overlay Zones, and Plan Districts and other zoning requirements.

Testimony Tips (PDF)

A guide on how to present effective testimony at a Planning Commission or City Council hearing. This resource was prepared by Amanda Fritz when she served on the Portland Planning Commission.

What to Do When You Receive a Land Use Notice (PDF)

A step-by-step primer for neighborhood land use chairs on how to respond to a land use notice. This resource was prepared by Amanda Fritz when she served as a neighborhood association land use chair.