WHAT ARE THE DIVISION MAIN STREET DESIGN GUIDELINES?

The Division Main St Design Guidelines offer design advice for developers, designers and community members on how to plan for new buildings and streetscape improvements that are compatible with the foundational character and identity of the Division Street neighborhood.

The guidelines were developed by an inter-neighborhood coalition from four neighborhood associations, the Division-Clinton Business District, Sustainable SE, and SE Uplift.  They are suggestive guidelines only. However, while they are not mandatory;  they do reflect input from a large volume of community members about community preferences and priorities and can often help facilitate faster, more improved processes when developers and designers use them which is a valuable incentive.

VIEW THE UPDATED DRAFT

  • VIEW THE UPDATED DIVISION DESIGN GUIDELINES – 90% DRAFT (Full Document  – Large File – 14M)Guidelines 90% cover
  • VIEW THE GUIDELINES (34 Pages, no Appendices  – Smaller File – 8.6M) |
    Includes: Compatibility & Context, Building Form, Scale, Massing & Stepbacks, Site Deign, Transitions (e.g. privacy, solar access, etc), Division Main Street Identity, Architectural Character & Style, Storefront & Facades,  Historic Preservation, Commercial/Retail Space Configuration, Residential Character & Diversity, Sustainable Design, Exterior Materials, Signage, Lighting, Landscape, Public Space, Streetscape & Pedestrian Amenities.
  • APPENDICES | (Pages 34-69 – 6M)
    Includes Good Resources Including: Easy Reference Guides, Lists of Special Buildings & Key Sites, Illustrations of Buildings with Special Character, Foundational Architectural Styles from out Street-Car Era Main Streets, Encouraged Main St. “Patterns”, Useful Division Green St./Main Street Plan Goals & Urban Design Concepts, and a Glossary of Helpful Planning Terms.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE PROCESS | See below for how to give comments, and why this is important…

HOW IS THIS DOCUMENT DIFFERENT FROM THE 2016 SHORT VERSION PROVISIONALLY ADOPTED BY NEIGHBORHOODS

  • This document is a much more robust illustrated and content-rich document that is a recommended update to “the short version” 2016 Provisionally Adopted Division Design Guidelines.
  • It is a hybrid of the 2016 “short version” which was adopted by Richmond, Hosford-Abernethy, Mount Tabor, and South Tabor Neighborhood Associations, as well as the Division Clinton and Hawthorne Boulevard Business Associations.
  • Community Edits: It is informed by community comments from multiple neighborhood and business associations on the short version during the earlier adoption process.
  • New Main Street Architecture Resources:  We’ve added a set of “Foundational Architectural Styles” descriptions and images so when we hear a developer or architect say “there’s nothing there to relate to” in terms of architecture or character, you have a set of photos and descriptions to highlight  exemplary buildings and design patterns that are part of our Main Street identity from which to draw inspiration.
  • Technical Design Recommendations from our Consultants:  The updated version  integrates more detailed content from the “long version” of the guidelines (aka The Resources Guide for Creating Division Design Guidelines) which was  developed with technical assistance and support from our amazing  consultants at Urbworks + Design Culture Lab (hired with a grant from SE Uplift and community donated funds).

HOW CAN COMMUNITY MEMBERS GIVE INPUT?

We would love to hear from you! There are still some small additions to be made but we wanted to share this with you earlier before we send out a recommended final draft because balancing many cooks (i.e. voices from different groups is complex and takes time so please share any early comments you can now so we can get them in the final draft in early June.

Questions:

  • Are there any critical changes you think should be made before neighborhood and business groups consider adoption? Are the pictures we chose telling the story?  Are there things you really like or not? 
  • Anything missing you would like to see that isn’t addressed (besides parking…).
  • What would make it more usable – we are already thinking of a linked table of contents, training, short summary flyer. What else? 
  • Should we join Hawthorne’s Business Association in recommending these guidelines apply to other SE streetcar-era main streets, including Hawthorne?
  • The guidelines are considered suggestive/voluntary, however some have advocated we may want more “teeth”. Should some of the guidelines be advocated for to become “standards” (i.e. mandatory)? Bonus question: which ones (either in the draft or out) would you recommend?

Timeline for Review + Comments:

  • Deadline for Comments on 90% Draft:  June 1st.
    Note: You will still be able to comment to your neighborhood or business district on the final draft after this date but this is an early chance to influence this version before it becomes final.
  • Adoption considered beginning in June by neighborhoods and business districts
  • Send comments, ideas for sharing or making it more accessible, testimonials, or other feedback to:  ilovedivision@gmail.com

WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT?

 “A concern of many people is that the rate of growth overwhelms and erases the legacy of these areas as various older buildings are replaced.” (DOZA Tools Concept Report).

Portland is growing! As older neighborhoods evolve, there are many issues to balance including housing, economic vitality, sustainability, equity and livability, and preservation of historic resources and identity, etc. Infill is an important part of the city’s growth strategy and its attempt to address climate change. However, “The current system doesn’t recognize the varied impacts of different scales of development. Much of Portland’s unique character and reputation derives from the abundance of small-scale, home-grown businesses that reflect the individual personalities of the people who own and operate them. Indeed, many Portland neighborhoods are filled with a fine-grained, exuberant mixture of shops, restaurants, food carts, galleries, pubs, and personal services. In the last decade, however, this diverse and distinctive character has been gradually replaced by new buildings with considerably less “hand-crafted” character at the street level.” (DOZA Findings Report 2016)

DESIGN MATTERS. The quality and character of new buildings vary greatly as does the intensity of impact to neighborhoods, districts, and property values depending on HOW infill is designed.  The challenge and opportunity is to design it well and be sensitive to the context, character and identity of an area. Most of our neighborhoods will not have development reviewed by the design commission, and most of our neighborhoods do not have design guidelines that help reflect local area priorities for special buildings and places.

The extensive research, outreach, design and policy tools that have all informed the creation of the Division Design Guidelines, have created a model set of design tools that may also be relevant resources for our other special street car era main streets with similar patterns and character.

THANK YOU TO THE MANY VOLUNTEERS AND MORE THAN 1,000 COMMUNITY MEMBERS WHO HAVE BEEN INVOLVED IN THE PROCESS!
LEARN MORE ABOUT THE PROCESS

WANT TO KNOW MORE?

Contact us with questions, suggestions or ideas, testimonials of support, or to request a presentation on the guidelines. Email us at ilovedivision@gmail.com. We’d love to hear from you!

The Division Design Initiative is a project of the Richmond Neighborhood Association in collaboration with Hosford Abernethy Neighborhood District, Division Clinton Business Association, South Tabor and North Tabor Neighborhood Associations. Development of the guidelines was made possible with support through a Neighborhood Small Grant from SE Uplift, and through donations from volunteers, local businesses, and the coalition partners noted above.

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