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Model Code

DLCD uses staff experts and consultants to develop model code that can be used by cities and counties. Model code is written for a number of reasons, as the examples below illustrate. It is typically created to help a local government follow best practices, or adhere to new state standards, rules, or statutes. Model codes are often tailored to suit the needs of a community. DLCD offers the following model codes as a tool or resource for local planning departments in Oregon.

Senate Bill 1051 (2017) requires that cities and counties in Oregon of a certain population allow ADU's in areas zoned for detached housing. This ADU model code is written for cities to adopt in part, or in full, with or without local amendments to conform to state statute. **This guidance document was updated September 2019 to address the off-street parking and owner occupancy requirements of House Bill 2001 (2019).

The Model Development Code for Small Cities, developed by Oregon’s Transportation and Growth Management Program (TGM), addresses a wide variety of necessary code elements for a city to use as a starting point, or to adopt outright. TGM is updating the Model Code for Small Cities. The last substantive update to the model code was in 2012 (Edition 3.0) and the language is out of compliance with recent legislation. Update work is occurring now through 2025.  For more information about this project see the flyer here. Sign up for email updates about this project by clicking here.​ For more guidance on how to use the code while it is being updated, contact the TGM code assistance planner.

The goal of this Land Use Guide is to help coastal communities become more resilient to a catastrophic tsunami event through community land use options and strategies. The guide is focused on a local tsunami event as these events will likely be far more destructive to an entire community and much harder to prepare for. The guide is focused on land use planning approaches to reduce tsunami hazard risk. Chapter 3 includes a set of comprehensive plan policies related to tsunami preparedness and recovery and a related text section that can be included within the Goal 7 section of the plan. Chapter 4 includes development code language to implement a tsunami hazards overlay zone.

The model code titled, Coastal Erosion Overlay Zone (2012), was created to aid local governments in addressing chronic coastal natural hazards. It provides for identification and assessment of risk from natural hazards, and establishes standards that limit overall risk to the community.

The Oregon Model Flood Hazard Ordinance (New version released October 2020) was developed in cooperation with FEMA to help communities achieve compliance with the minimum NFIP and state standards for floodplain management. FEMA approved the model ordinance in August of 2019 and it is now available for communities to use. In addition to the minimum requirements, FEMA and DLCD encourage local governments to adopt higher standards that make sense for each community and their unique flood risk.

This handbook provided guidance to communities in determining whether their local codes and standards encourage, support, or impede smart development. It also aims to help reader identify whether smart development principles and ideas fit their communities, and if smart development ideas would help to achieve local goals or meet state planning requirements.

The Transportation Demand Management Module is embedded in a guide for local governments interested in learning more about TDM. The guide includes background information about TDM, a step-by-step approach for implementing a TDM plan program, and model code language.

This guidance document​ includes resources to assist local governments in updating their development codes to facilitate construction of prefabricated and modular housing. The document is formatted as an Audit Workbook, which is intended to help local government staff identify and address regulatory barriers to prefabricated/modular housing in their codes. It also provides Model Code language that can be adopted into local development codes to better facilitate this construction type.​​​

​​​Preparing for a local or catastrophic event requires a comprehensive community effort. Oregon communities can become more resilient to landslide hazards through community land use options and strategies. ​Preparing for Landslide Hazards: A Land Use Guide for Oregon Communities brings together strategies and examples from a variety of sources to help each community make good decisions. Without proper site evaluation and construction techniques, development in areas susceptible to landslides will significantly increase potential for loss of life and property damage, not only on the subject property but also on neighboring properties.

Click here for the Preparing for Landslide Hazards quick reference sheet.​