Progress on reforming Portland’s dysfunctional demolition rules

Southeast Uplift welcomes the recommendations proposed today at the Developer Review Advisory Committee (DRAC).

Neighborhood association members reported that the DRAC has recommended the elimination of the often abused “K-1 Exemption” and a requirement that developers indicate that they will meet state and federal dangerous substance rules as part of the permitting process.  While the details are yet to be finalized, this puts Portland back on the track of being a land use friendly environmentally conscious city.

Topics slated for discussion at the next DRAC sub-committee meeting are:    1) whether there should be an additional delay period that recognized neighborhood organizations can apply for, and if so, how long should it be? 30 days? 120 days;  and 2) when does a “major remodel” cross over into being a demolition.

The proposed elimination of the “K-1 Exemption” means that all demolitions will be subject to the delay and notice rules originally set out in Portland’s city code.  Among other benefits, it will allow neighborhoods to know thirty five days in advance when major demolitions are likely to occur and provide sufficient delay to enforce rules prohibiting the release of asbestos.

These changes come from hard work at DRAC and the city’s many neighborhood associations.