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Eugene City Councilors tweak Middle Housing ordinance

citycouncil_middlehousing slide.jpg
City of Eugene
A slide from city staff presentation on Middle Housing at Wednesday's Eugene City Council work session.

Eugene City Councilors Wednesday made some changes to a proposed Middle Housing ordinance that’s been in the works for about two years.

Despite months of public involvement, a recent hearing on the city’s plan to implement House Bill 2001 drew historic numbers—many in opposition.

The council has to implement the plan before June 30th when House bill 2001 takes effect. It’s aimed at increasing the variety and amount of housing in cities.

Councilor Greg Evans said he wants to support the work of the city’s planning commission over the past 2 years.

“I’m not in favor of turning our whole planning process over to the state of Oregon,” he said. “I think that we need to keep as much local control as we can. 2001 has taken away some of that control.”

Councilors approved a reduction in maximum height for new four-plexes, triplexes and duplexes from 35 feet to 30 feet. They also eliminated incentives for not including parking spots for new small dwelling units. They also voted to change a parking incentive for building closer to public transit from within a half mile to within one quarter mile of EmX stops.

And they approved shorter maximum heights for new buildings from 35 feet to 30 with an additional 7 feet for roof slope.

The council voted against a motion to reduce maximum lot coverage from 75% to 50%, which is the current standard.

Councilors may vote on the middle housing ordinance at their May 18th work session.

Copyright 2022 KLCC.

Rachael McDonald is KLCC’s former News Director. Rachael has a BA in English from the University of Oregon. She started out in public radio as a newsroom volunteer at KLCC in 2000. After reporting for the Northwest News Network and KAZU, Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 as Morning Edition host and a general assignment reporter covering politics, the environment, education, and the arts. She was hired as KLCC News Director in 2018. Rachael departed KLCC in June, 2022.