Sunday, August 5, 2012

Transit Oriented Development

TriMet works to encourage the development of urban environments that are transit-friendly.

Our Mission:

TriMet supports the Portland Metropolitan region's goals for compact urban development that facilitates urban mobility through a variety of transportation choices.  Key activities to promote this transit-friendly environment include:

  • Supporting Transit Oriented Development
  • Monitoring Station Area development trends
  • Reviewing community development plans for compatibility with Transit

Programs and Projects:

Transit Oriented Developments
A Transit Oriented Development (TOD) is a residential, mixed use, or primarily commercial development together with a supporting network of open space, pedestrian and/or bike access and other amenities focused on a major transit stop with a density sufficient to support a high level of transit use.   TODs can be implemented along bus, streetcar, or light rail corridors and can be either private or public developments or a mix of both.

The Project Planning department helps implement TriMet's policy to utilize its real estate to promote transit ridership and vibrant station areas by encouraging Transit Oriented Development.  Staff identify opportunities to develop vacant or underutilized property, solicit development teams and oversee the development process.  Staff also assists other agencies to understand the components of transit-oriented development.  The Community Building Sourcebook, posted on the TriMet website, provides an overview of the transit investments, policies, programs, TODs, and organizations that contribute to the Portland region's reputation for progressive land use and transit planning.

Station Area Development Monitoring
Station areas are generally described as the area within a half mile of light rail platforms, or a quarter mile of the Portland Streetcar.  Project Planning staff are occasionally asked to assess how well development is responding to regional compact land use and transit oriented development goals.  One method to address this is to periodically monitor the amount and kind of development that has taken place within these station areas.

The general approach is to define tax lots within the half mile distance for each station area and determine the current assessed value and number of housing units that have been built since the decision to construct each light rail line. 

Summing development for station areas across several light rail corridors, we have identified over $7 Billion of new construction since the decision to build on the Blue, Red, and Yellow lines.

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