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Oregon Planning

A Model for the Nation

Land use planning in Oregon consists of a system of laws and government collaboration that is rare in the United States. Voters approved the framework for the system in 1973. The system now preserves vast areas of land for farm and forest production, protects habitat, conserves natural resources, and protects air and water, all while continuing to allow development of land for homes and businesses. May 2023 marks the 50th Anniversary of Oregon's Land Use Planning Program.

Learn more about the history and origin of the program.

Oregon's Statewide Land Use Planning Goals

The comprehensive land use planning system in Oregon begins with a set of 19 Statewide Land Use Planning Goals. These goals address the local process of land use planning, direct the state's resource preservation, give guidance for urban development, and offer direction to cities and counties who need to plan for coastal assets. The outcome of the goals is as unique as each city and county of Oregon – each local government develops a comprehensive plan that addresses the resources, constraints and opportunities specific to the place.

Statewide Land Use Planning Goals

Oregon's Land Use Goals are implemented through Laws and Rules.

Oregon's Land Use Goals are upheld by the Land Conservation and Development Commission.

Get Involved in Local Planning

Goal 1 is Citizen Involvement – including the public in the land use decision making processes is a hugely important part of successful planning. Knowing how and when to be involved makes a big difference.

Go to the Get Involved in Local Planning page to learn about participating in land use decisions.

Required City and County Reporting

Cities and counties in Oregon are required to submit certain land use decisions to DLCD. These reporting requirements are specified in state statute and administrative rule. They are summarized on the Required Reporting page.

Resources for Planners

Land use planning can be confusing and technical, and interface with a broad array of other local government bodies – from public health, to arts commissions, to historical preservation, education, public safety and recreation. Here is a short list of commonly used resources for city and county planners.

Putting the People in Planning (2019) is a DLCD publication is intended to be used as a tool by local government, public agencies, and members of the public. It provides useful guidelines and resources for planning, executing and evaluating public outreach associated with land use planning projects.

Understanding Oregon's Land Use Planning Program - Online Training is a short, annotated video series that talks in plain language about how to work with the program's 19 Statewide Planning Goals and Oregon administrative rules. It also explains how federal programs and executive initiatives influence the way statewide land use planning, development and conservation are achieved in Oregon.

"Oregon Planning Commissioner Handbook - April 2015" is designed to assist those who deal with Oregon’s land use program including planning commissioners, city and county governing bodies, members of advisory committees (design review boards, historic landmark commissions etc.), professional staff, and interested citizens. Its purpose is to serve as an initial introduction to newly elected or appointed officials and be a useful reference for those with more experience.

Association of Counties: Representing Oregon counties since 1906, the Association of Oregon Counties unites counties to advocate, communicate, and educate through information sharing and consensus development.

League of Oregon Cities: The League of Oregon Cities is a governmental entity formed by an intergovernmental agreement by Oregon's incorporated cities. The League was founded in 1925 and is governed by a 16-member Board of Directors. LOC works with its member cities to help local government better serve the citizens of Oregon.

Oregon Chapter of the American Planning Association: OAPA is an independent, not-for-profit educational organization that provides leadership in the development of vital communities by advocating excellence in community planning, promoting education and citizen empowerment, and providing the tools and support necessary to meet the challenges of growth and change.

Related Information

About DLCD
Land Conservation and Development Commission