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Affordable Housing Pilot Program

In 2016, the Oregon Legislature passed House Bill 4079 (HB 4079) which formed a pilot program that aims to help cities build affordable housing. The program will allow two cities to add new housing units on lands currently outside their urban growth boundaries (UGBs) without going through the normal UGB expansion process.

The law directed the Land Conservation and Development Commission (LCDC) to set up a process to select two pilot projects: one for a city with a population up to 25,000, and one for a city with a population greater than 25,000. The LCDC adopted rules that provide the details on the pilot program process and project requirements. See OAR 660-039.

The proposed project sites can be up to 50 acres, cannot be on high value farmland, and must meet other requirements as specified in OAR 660-039. The cities must ensure that the affordable housing added to the project sites remain affordable for the next 50 years. The cities must also demonstrate efforts to accommodate and encourage needed housing within their existing UGBs.

The first step for cities was to submit a pre-application to DLCD by November 1, 2017. Full applications will be due in 2018, at a date to be determined by the Department.

Image outlining the recommended next steps for cities interested in participating in the pilot program. 

Download the Pilot Program Overview.

Eligible Cities & Pre-Application

In order for a city to be eligible for the pilot program, they must meet the population requirements specified by the adopted rules. One city from each population category below will be selected to participate in the program.

Eligible Cities over 25,000 Population: Albany, Bend, Corvallis, Eugene, Grants Pass, McMinnville, Medford, Redmond, and Springfield.

Eligible Cities up to 25,000 Population: All incorporated cities in Oregon except

  • Cities in Clackamas, Marion, Multnomah, Polk, and Washington counties
  • Cities in Jefferson County served by the North Unit Irrigation District.

Interested eligible cities had to have submitted a pre-application to DLCD by November 1, 2017.

Download the Pre-application.

Program Process

After Pre-Application

After submitting the pre-application, DLCD staff will review each submission and discuss the submission with each city applying. If the pre-application lacks sufficient detail, additional materials may be submitted.

Image providing the application process, in a graphic format.  

Program Application

Cities with accepted pre-applications will have until a date in 2018 to be determined by the department, to submit a full application to DLCD. The full application requires a significant amount of detailed information about the proposed project to be documented and provided to DLCD. Additionally, the city must adopt measures that encourage the development of affordable and needed housing within its existing UGB. Finally, they must explain why the project could not be developed elsewhere, and how the new housing on the project site will remain affordable for the next 50 years.

See the following documents for more detailed information:

Review and Selection

DLCD will review the full applications to ensure they meet the requirements of the pilot program. Staff will reach out to cities if additional information is needed.

The Land Conservation and Development Commission will select two pilot projects that best meet the goals of the program and issue a final order. The selected cities shall then amend their urban growth boundaries, annex the proposed project sites, and adopt needed regulations. The cities will then issue permits for development to occur.

The selected cities are required to send the Commission annual reports for the next 10 years with information on development costs, the housing units available, and lessons learned from the project.

Additional Resources


Gordon Howard
Community Services Division Manager
Phone: 503-934-0034

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