Land Use Highlights

The community vision for Land Use:

Land use in River Road and Santa Clara supports neighborhood character and local identity, including our long-standing agricultural heritage and high value soils. Our neighborhoods are walkable, with a range of housing types affordable to all residents. Abundant shops, services and community spaces are served by a variety of transportation options. Strategic development and revitalization in more urban locations, especially the River Road corridor, helps maintain neighborhood character while meeting our housing and economic needs in a way that is environmentally responsible. Development is well designed, sustainable, and compatible with existing surroundings. Adjacent to the Willamette River Greenway, development improves safety, enhances access, and respects ecological functions.

To support implementation of the community vision along the River Road corridor:

The proposed River Road-Santa Clara Special Area Zone focuses on neighborhood centers, key commercial areas near future transportation improvements, along the River Road corridor, and includes commercial zoned areas and key large church properties beyond the corridor to support potential future redevelopment. The Draft Proposed Zoning Map shows where the proposed zoning will apply and where current zoning will remain. The proposed zoning will only apply to properties currently within the city limits or as property owners choose to annex.

The draft code standards that implement the proposed new zoning will apply to new development or redevelopment only. Existing uses or structures will not be affected. The proposed changes will not require a change in use or changes to current structures. If an existing use or structure does not meet the proposed regulations, then it would be considered a legal non-conforming use.

Design objectives of the proposed new zoning and overlays:

Corridor Mixed-Use Zoning

  • Encourage new buildings with appropriate height and relationship to the street that enable a long-term transition to a highly walkable, safe, and active streetscape
  • Combine engaging street side character with gradual building scale transitions between uses of greater and lesser intensity

Corridor Residential Zoning

  • Encourage a variety of housing types and sizes, create a sense of community and safety, and include pedestrian scale design for walkable streetscapes
  • Incorporate open spaces and community meeting places

Willamette River Greenway Overlay

  • Enhance public access and connections to the river
  • Use development standards to provide a buffer between the Willamette River Greenway Setback and new development and to limit the mass of buildings

Commercial Frontage Overlay

  • Establish areas where ground floor commercial uses are required (e.g. retail, personal services, and restaurants)
  • Use development standards to support an active street environment

Visit the code summary for an overview of other key code topics and to see an overview of the proposed zoning and development standards compared to existing zoning and development standards. Stay tuned for community outreach opportunities to provide feedback on the draft zoning and land use code!

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