Housing Code Sub-Committee meets

Review, update of codes begins

May 4, 2019 — The City of Florence Housing Code Update Subcommittee, which operates under the auspices of the Community and Economic Development Committee (CEDC), met last Thursday afternoon at City Hall, where the meeting was facilitated by City Recorder Kelli Weese and Planning Director Wendy FarleyCampbell.

The group’s agenda focused on familiarizing the members of the group with basic elements of the Florence’s planning process and a number of housing related code changes that might be needed moving forward.

FarleyCampbell reviewed the previous steps taken in the creation and funding for the group and turned its collective attention to information that included suggested changes to code made by 3J Consulting, which works with municipalities and civic groups to provide a range of services related to the assessment and improvement of public spaces. The firm was hired using grant monies received for the specific purpose of reviewing and updating Florence’s housing codes. 3J is located in Beaverton, Ore., and the firm’s review of current code has resulted in a large number of changes the consultants feel should be reviewed by the committee.

The report provided by 3J will be the primary guide for the Housing Code Subcommittee to use while working towards the update of Florence’s housing codes.

3J has suggested a number of changes to the applicable housing codes, including revisions related to off-street parking and loading, zoning adjustments and planned unit development, among others.

The members of this subcommittee will work over the next two months to clarify and update parts of the current housing code to more readily support the construction of housing in the area.

During the Thursday, June 20 CEDC meeting, the committee will discuss and finalize their recommendation to Planning Commission and City Council. The City Council and Planning Commission will have hearings later in the summer.

CEDC members of this sub-committee are Robbie Wright, David Montes, Bill Prosser and Jeff Ashmead. Additional members Ron Mann, Sandi Young and Aric Sneddon were selected by the committee.

FarleyCampbell’s introduction reviewed the goal of the committee and shared a timeline which included multiple work sessions ending with a public open house on housing on May 23.

She also suggested the subcommittee members take some time before the next meeting to acquaint themselves with the work done by the consultants, in order to come to the next meeting prepared to discuss the recommendations.

The Housing Code Update project is also focused on working to minimize obstacles to the development of a variety of affordable housing options for interested developers and individual homeowners.

This was a comprehensive recap of the issues that the committee will be tasked to examine and consider for possible further action.

The next meeting of the Housing Code Update Subcommittee is Thursday, May 9, at Florence City Hall.