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Are Use Classifications Outdated?

For the past couple of years, many office spaces sat empty while residential spaces became our de facto offices. The zoning specifically allows or prohibits certain uses, sometimes complicating attempts to convert spaces. Are zoning use classifications outdated?

Real estate professionals, developers, and architects know that building use classifications are one of the most important things to establish at the outset of every project. The declared use has a big impact on the cost of development--from the regulatory reviews that may or may not be required to the building code standards that will dictate design and construction. Zoning governs what you can do where, and this has always been a central aspect of the regulatory power of zoning.

Until that changes, you can use UrbanForm to find sites that are zoned to allow certain uses. Discover *every* site in a jurisdiction that allows one or more uses.

How about a site that allows multi-family developments AND offices? With a minimum of 10 dwelling units allowable? Containing an existing building built between 1960 and 1980? And that existing building is under 2,000 square feet? There are 1,281 sites that meet that criteria in Portland.

Here's how you would do this search in UrbanForm:

UrbanForm is the only place you can do this kind of search instantly.

Select the Filter tab, as shown in the circled red above.

Select among the tabs highlighted in yellow to adjust the Filter criteria.

Once the criteria have been adjusted as desired, click on the See Results button.

Results matching the set criteria are displayed here in a list, as well as highlighted on the map, as shown above.

Click on any address in the list or on the map to select and view the property in greater detail, as shown below.

Property and zoning details are displayed when a single property is selected.

Click on the Filter tab again to be returned to the Results list, where you can select another property from the list or adjust the criteria to search again.


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