Skip to Main Content View Text-Only

The City of Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon

Welcome to the official web site of the City of Portland, Oregon

General Information: 503-823-4000


1221 SW 4th Avenue, Room 110, Portland, OR 97204

More Contact Info

Subscribe to RSS feed

Most Recent

View Less

More effective processes for design review are available for public consideration

doza-coverThe quality of building design matters for a growing city. And the rules and processes to ensure good, human-centered design for our most populated, growing and vibrant places is important for the entire community.

So, these rules need to be evaluated and updated periodically. The Design Overlay Zones Amendments projects — DOZA Process and DOZA Tools — do just that; they hit the reset button on the rules for Portland’s Design overlay zone (the d-overlay) and design review program. 

The DOZA Process Discussion Draft is now ready for review; a DOZA Tools Concept Report will be released in early May 2018.

Read the DOZA Process Discussion Draft.

What’s in the DOZA Process Discussion Draft?

DOZA Process proposes ways to make the design review process more efficient, predictable and transparent. The project proposes amendments to the Zoning Code that work in conjunction with ongoing administrative improvements being led by the Bureau of Development Services. BDS implements the City’s design review program through the development review process.

The DOZA Process proposes to:

  1. Revise the purpose statement for the Design overlay zone and related design chapters to reflect the direction of the new Comprehensive Plan.
  2. Clarify that floor area ratio (FAR) cannot be reduced as a condition of design review approval.
  3. In the Gateway plan district, allow smaller projects to use Community Design Standards as an alternative to a design review.
  4. Align the Type III design review and historic resource review process with an applicant’s design process by allowing phased submittals of materials, requiring early design conferences and ensuring focused commission deliberations and decision-making.
  5. Update the rules related to Design Commission membership to allow landscape architects as industry technical experts, and clarify that the public-at-large member is independent of these industries.

Portlanders are invited to learn more about the Discussion Draft and give their feedback in the coming weeks. This public outreach period is focused on familiarizing community members with the detailed code amendments in preparation for the Planning and Sustainability Commission and subsequent City Council hearings later this year.

Upcoming events

Community members are invited to an open house on May 9 to learn about the proposals, as well as the DOZA Tools Concept Report. Project staff will be available to answer questions about the draft changes to improve design review in Portland.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018, 5 – 7:30 p.m.
1900 SW 4th Avenue, Room 2500 (2nd floor)
TriMet: Multiple bus, MAX and streetcar lines

Staff will also be meeting with community groups and others to share information about the project to answer questions. If your group is interested in a presentation, please contact Kathryn Hartinger at or (503) 823-9714.

How to comment

Comments are due by Friday, June 1, 2018. Send comments to Phil Nameny, DOZA Process Project Manager.

City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability
Attn: DOZA Process
1900 SW 4th Avenue, Suite 7100
Portland, OR  97201

Next steps

Your comments on the Discussion Draft will be considered as we develop a DOZA Process Proposed Draft, scheduled for release in August 2018. The Planning and Sustainability Commission will hold public hearings on the Proposed Draft in September and October, make their amendments and vote to recommend a revised draft to City Council in December.

For more information, please visit the Design Overlay Zone Amendments website.