The City of Eugene has heard through years of engagement efforts that residents want more housing choices, more transportation options, less pollution, and more equitable outcomes. CFEC helps communities across Oregon to achieve these outcomes.
Initially, there are two ways an area of the city will be directly impacted by CFEC:
- Designation as a Climate-Friendly Area
- Parking reforms for certain types of development and near frequent transit corridors
- Electric vehicle charging infrastructure for new multi-unit and mixed-use development
Climate Friendly Areas
The City will designate Climate-Friendly Areas where people are allowed to build taller buildings and at higher densities, providing more housing and jobs. Climate-Friendly Areas will likely include downtown and some of the city’s core commercial areas and key transit corridors. In 2023, Eugene will complete a study of the most promising Climate-Friendly Areas across the city. According to the CFEC requirements, the study will include technical analysis of the potential areas, considering whether the areas are suitable (for example, they are not in the floodway or other hazard areas), require fewer policy changes (such as changes to the land use code), and achieve, or could achieve, certain housing and employment capacity targets. Importantly, the Climate-Friendly Areas Study will consider equity implications, such as potential displacement of historically marginalized community groups, as well as ways to prevent or reduce displacement.
Climate-Friendly Areas designation is one tool the City has to encourage more compact development within the current Urban Growth Boundary (UGB). These tools are referred to as land use “efficiency measures” because they enable land to develop more efficiently. They are revisited each time Eugene reviews the UGB to determine if more are needed to accommodate projected population growth. The Eugene City Council will designate Climate-Friendly Areas and adopt changes to the land use code and comprehensive plan in alignment with state requirements. These changes will be adopted with the next UGB analysis in 2026.
CFEC also requires that the City change its approach to parking requirements. Right now, most new development requires a certain number of off-street parking spots be built. In Climate-Friendly Areas and in parts of the city with good transit access, this requirement will no longer exist.
As of January 1, 2023, Eugene eliminated minimum off-street parking requirements in certain situations, in alignment with the CFEC requirements. There are no longer required minimum parking for certain types of development, such as smaller housing types, childcare facilities, affordable housing, publicly supported housing, and shelters. Additionally, there are no longer minimum off-street parking requirements within one-half mile walking distance of frequent transit corridors. These changes don't mean that people can’t build parking, just that the City doesn’t require it. Most people will continue to provide some parking, but they will have more flexibility on what to provide on their individual lot, including more housing, commercial space, trees, or open space.
This change to the development review process is the first of several changes to parking requirements as a part of CFEC. At a broader scale, Eugene will also select one of three options to reform parking requirements city-wide. City-wide parking reform will include certain improvements to parking regulations, including carpool/vanpool placement, allowing shared parking, and requirements for solar panels or tree canopy in parking lots, among other policies.
Electric Vehicle Charging
The State of Oregon has an adopted goal that 90% of new vehicles sold will be electric by 2035. To help meet that goal, the City needs to ensure people can charge their vehicles. The most convenient place to do so is at home. As of April 1, 2023, new multi-unit housing and mixed-use developments with 5 or more dwellings must now include electrical conduit (pipes) to 40% of their parking spots, ready for adding wiring and charging stations to support electric vehicles as the market expands.
CFEC also requires changes to the Eugene Land Use Code so that new development is more pedestrian-friendly and supports compact design across the city. Neighborhoods must be designed with connected street, sidewalk, and accessway networks where it is safe for walking, using mobility devices, and bicycling. Commercial and mixed-use areas must have compact, walkable design, such as with building entrances oriented to the street, pedestrian-friendly parking areas, and other site design requirements. Bicycle parking for new development will also need to meet the CFEC standards which may mean more and larger spaces.