Here are the services offered though our e-Permitting site:
Building Permit Applications
You are now able to apply for all building permits, provide construction documents, and pay for review fees in a single transaction.
Public Works Applications
We are also excited you can now apply for Encroachment and Erosion Prevention and Sediment Control applications.
ePlans (Electronic Plan Review)
Electronic plan review is integrated into this system allowing you to create an application, submit your plans, and monitor application status without waiting for an invitation or using a separate system.
Updated Record Statuses
Better track your projects through the process with clearer record statuses: know when an application may have been deemed incomplete, when a plan review letter is available, when fees are due, and when the permit is issued. A full list and definitions of existing and new statuses is available in our guides and tutorials above.
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On January 14, 2022, amendments to the Albany Development Code went into effect that allow middle housing types in areas zoned for residential uses where detached single-unit housing are currently permitted. The objectives of allowing middle housing types in more areas in the city are to:
Improve housing choices in the short term, and housing affordability in the long term, for Albany residents.
Help Albany comply with House Bill 2001, a 2019 state law requiring cities to increase the variety of housing options in residential areas by permitting “middle housing.”
In Albany, middle housing refers to duplexes, triplexes, quadplexes, townhouses, and cottage clusters. Middle housing types are typically built at a similar scale as single-unit detached houses and were common in neighborhoods prior to World War II. However, Albany and many other cities prohibited or significantly limited middle housing in single-family neighborhoods through zoning regulations that categorized them as “multi-family housing.”
What are Albany’s regulations and process for building Middle Housing?
The following handouts explain most of Albany’s middle housing types in more detail and provide the applicable Albany Development Code Standards for each housing type, including minimum lot sizes by zoning district.
A single detached building containing two primary dwellings. (Buildings with a primary dwelling and an accessory dwelling unit (ADU), would follow the ADU standards in ADC Section 3.080(4).) Duplexes are permitted on any lot or parcel where detached single unit dwellings are allowed and must meet the same design and development standards as detached single unit dwellings.
Handout coming soon
Triplexes and Fourplexes
Include a single building containing three (triplex) or four (fourplex) dwellings on a single lot or parcel.
Middle Housing types are permitted with a building permit. Applicants will submit the applicable middle housing checklist (coming soon) with their building permit to ensure compliance with all applicable development standards.
Are ADUs (accessory dwelling units) considered Middle Housing?
No. One accessory dwelling unit is permitted on each lot that contains one legally established single detached dwelling unit. ADUs are subject to the development standards in ADC Article 3, Section 3.080 (4).
Why do cities need more Middle Housing types?
Housing needs vary. Many residents are paying more than they can afford for housing and are limited to renting or buying detached homes they can’t afford. Small families, young adults, and the growing population of elderly need housing options that offer a smaller footprint, lower maintenance, and easier access to public transportation, services, and social opportunities. Enabling middle housing and a greater variety of housing options will expand opportunities for where people can choose to live, and what type of homes they live in.
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Deed restrictions such as Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions (CCRs) are commonly known today for laying out rules for homeowner's associations. However, people who own older residential property may also find racial restrictive covenants in their property deed and CCRs.
While racial restrictive covenants are not enforceable, the presence of the language has made its way to the Oregon State Legislature. In 2018, the Legislature passed two laws — ORS 93.270 and ORS 93.274 — that are intended to make it easier for property owners to remove racist provisions from the title of their property through state circuit courts.
How do I learn if racial restrictive covenants appear in my property's deed and CCRs?
The documents you signed when you purchased your home will include the deed and CCRs. A close review of these documents will reveal whether racial restrictive covenants were applied to your property. Note that the restrictions are often embedded and may be limited to a single sentence or short paragraph.
If you are not able to locate the documents, you can obtain a copy of the deed from your county or by contacting a title company. A fee may apply.
What is the process to remove discriminatory restrictions?
The laws passed in 2018 aim to ease the removal of discriminatory restrictions from property records, using a procedure detailed in ORS 93.274. Please note this is not a City process. All inquiries should be directed to your county’s circuit court.
The Civic Unity Committee, in a 1946 publication, defined racial restrictive covenants as: “agreements entered into by a group of property owners, sub-division developers, or real estate operators in a given neighborhood, binding them not to sell, lease, rent or otherwise convey their property to specified groups because of race, creed or color for a definite period unless all agree to the transaction.”
Racial restrictive covenants began in the mid-19th century and were recorded when a lot was created, when a subdivision was approved, or when a home was built. Later, during the Great Depression, the National Housing Act of 1934 was passed with the intention of keeping banks from exceeding their loan reserves. Banks responded with the practice of redlining. Redlining identified areas on city maps where bank investments and sales of mortgages were preferred and redlined areas where lenders were discouraged from financing properties. This practice ultimately provided financial incentives to include racial restrictive covenants while also refusing financing to people of color in the only neighborhoods where they were allowed to purchase. This type of systemic racism became widespread across America, prohibiting the building of wealth through homeownership and deepening segregation based on race, color, and creed.
The U.S. Supreme Court found racial restrictive covenants to be legally unenforceable in 1948 based on the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The ruling established that courts would not enforce the covenants but did not prohibit the inclusion of racial restrictions in covenants or prevent private enforcement. It was not until the passage of the Federal Fair Housing Act of 1968 that the racial restrictive covenants became illegal. This means that those who own residential property built before 1968 could very likely find language in their own CCRs that reflects our history of exclusion in housing.
Over 50 years have passed since racial covenants became illegal, but the nation continues to see significantly different rates of homeownership for various racial groups. Fair Housing compliance checks across the country also continue to identify real estate transactions where racial bias limits access for renters and homeowners. In 2020, the U.S. Census Bureau reports the following homeownership rates among Americans:
Asian, native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islanders, 61.4%
The purpose of this project is to develop an equitable and actionable Housing Implementation Plan (HIP). The HIP will evaluate policies and strategies that the City can employ to address Albany’s current and future housing needs, as identified in the City’s recently-adopted Housing Needs Analysis (HNA). The HIP will also build upon community conversations and support around the Expanding Housing Options project that updated the City’s development code and Comprehensive Plan to allow middle housing and comply with House Bill 2001.
The HIP will prioritize housing needs and outline actionable policies, strategies, and implementation steps needed to encourage the production of needed housing. Further, it will provide the foundation for updating the housing element of the Albany Comprehensive Plan.
The project goals and objectives are to:
Identify and assess policies and strategies to increase housing options and opportunities that meet the needs of Albany residents as projected in the 2020 HNA and raised by the public, and to evaluate incentives in House Bill 2001 to increase the affordability of middle housing.
Evaluate housing resources and constraints, including evaluation of existing strategies and recommendations for new actions to increase housing supply or provide regulatory streamlining.
Engage a broad spectrum of the community in conversations and input around housing needs and strategies using a variety of engagement strategies.
Adopt policies and tools that promote fair and equitable housing choices for all residents, especially residents of protected classes and those experiencing housing insecurity.
Key elements of the project will include identifying an initial “menu” of potential housing strategies; analyzing current data and trends related to housing needs and the local housing market; evaluating potential strategies based on their impact on the development of needed housing; prioritizing the most effective or viable strategies for achieving housing goals, with input from community members and stakeholders; identifying necessary implementation steps; and drafting a final Housing Implementation Plan and amendments to the Albany Comprehensive Plan.
There will be a range of opportunities for stakeholders and community members to participate in developing the Housing Implementation Plan:
Housing Affordability Task Force
Albany’s Housing Affordability Task Force (HATF) will provide strategic direction on the project and will work with the project team to review and provide feedback on key project deliverables. The HATF represents a wide range of interests, including residents, local builders, affordable housing providers, disability rights advocates, and the Albany Planning Commission and City Council. HATF meetings will be recorded and live streamed for the public. Visit the Housing Affordability Task Force page for more information.
Stakeholder Meetings or Interviews
The project team will be interviewing key stakeholders to learn more about local barriers and opportunities for housing development, as well as housing strategies and best practices for their implementation. Target stakeholder groups include housing developers, affordable housing providers, low-income residents, youth/young adults, seniors, families with children, people of color / ethnic minorities, and school district representatives.
Community Group Meetings
City staff and consultants will give presentations to local community organizations that have a role and stake in addressing housing strategies in Albany.
Community Meeting/Online Open House and Survey
The project team will conduct a community meeting or workshop to review key project results with the broader Albany community. The meeting may be virtual or in-person, depending on the status of the COVID-19 pandemic. There will also be an associated online survey, to solicit community feedback on the draft Housing Strategies Evaluation and Implementation Plan.
Website and Social Media
This website will be periodically updated when new materials are available and when opportunities to participate are announced. The City will also post announcements to its social media pages.
Email the City’s project manager to comment, ask questions, or to join the project email list to stay engaged and informed about the project’s progress, or to sign up for a stakeholder or community group meeting. Please contact:
Links to meeting materials will be posted here as they are available.
Albany’s Housing Implementation Plan (HIP) will identify a set of policies and tools that the City can implement to facilitate housing development that meets the needs of the community. The HIP will prioritize strategies that promote fair and equitable housing choices for all residents, especially residents especially residents of protected classes and those experiencing housing insecurity.
The 2020 HNA found that there is significant need for new medium- and high-density housing to meet the City’s 20-year housing needs. This includes multi-family housing and “missing middle housing” such as duplexes, triplexes, quadplexes, and townhomes. The analysis also found both existing and future needs for housing affordable to low-income households (defined as households earning 80% or less of area median income). In particular, the HNA identified a shortage of rental units at the lowest pricing levels that would be affordable to the lowest-income households. Residents, realtors, the housing authority, and developers have also indicated a need for one-bedroom dwellings, accessible housing of all shapes and sizes, smaller one-story housing for residents wishing to downsize or buy their first home, and narrow lot housing. These gaps will be a focus of the City’s Housing Implementation Plan.
No, the City is voluntarily electing to create a Housing Implementation Plan to help meet the community’s housing needs. However, in the future, the City will be required to adopt a “Housing Production Strategy” in conjunction with a future update to its Housing Needs Analysis. House Bill 2003, adopted in 2019, requires Oregon cities with populations over 10,000 to develop Housing Production Strategies (HPS), which include a list of specific actions that the city will undertake to address housing needs identified in their HNA. The City of Albany will not be required to adopt an HPS until the year 2028. However, the City intends to incorporate ideas and resources provided by the state of Oregon for HPS’s into its voluntary Housing Implementation Plan.
The HIP may include strategies in the following categories:
Zoning and development code changes
Reducing regulatory or process barriers to housing
Financial incentives (such as tax abatements or system development charge reductions)
Funding sources (such as a Construction Excise Tax)
Land, acquisition, lease, and partnerships with housing providers and other community organizations
An exhaustive list of potential tools, actions, and policies that cities can implement to promote housing development was assembled by DLCD and can be found here.
The HIP is expected to be completed by April 2023.
The HIP will guide a work program that will be implemented over many years. The HIP will identify priority actions and potential funding sources (where needed), necessary partnerships to carry out strategies, and an expected timeline for when actions will be complete.
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What is Fair Housing?
Fair Housing refers to a set of federal, state, and local laws that prohibit housing discrimination based on a person's race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, source of income, familial status (children in the household under age 18, anticipated presence of children through adoption, pregnancy etc.), marital status, or physical or mental disability. These laws apply to all aspects of housing including renting, selling or buying housing, mortgage loans, adjustments to housing to become more physically accessible, and evictions. With few exceptions, these laws extend to all types of housing including individual homes, duplexes or triplexes, multifamily housing (apartments, condos, or townhomes), retirement housing, long term care facilities, and shelters.
The following list provides examples of housing discrimination but should be not considered a comprehensive list of the ways housing discrimination occurs. View this brochure (English/Spanish) for pictorial examples.
Refusing to rent or sell to someone because they are member of a protected class
Charging a higher rent or interest rate on a mortgage loan to someone because they are a member of a protected class
Refusing to allow a person with a disability to make their housing more physically accessible
Having different requirements or terms in a rental agreement or application because they are a member of a protected class
Only offering or showing someone housing in a certain neighborhood or area because they are a member of a protected class
Taking longer to perform maintenance or repairs on someone’s housing because they are a member of a protected class
Falsely denying the availability of housing to someone who is a member of a protected class
Actions that may not be overtly discriminatory but disproportionately affect people in a protected class (and have disparate impact)
Denying to a residential land use application, permit or funding request because residents may be of a protected class
Brochures in numerous languages are available for download and staff can respond to questions and complaints having to do with housing discrimination related to federal, state and local laws. 1-800-424-3247. Las publicaciones están disponibles en español y tienen personal que habla español a través del teléfono.
You have one year to file a complaint with the government, and two years to file a lawsuit in federal or state court.
Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) enforces Oregon´s civil rights laws. These laws ban discrimination against individuals because of characteristics that make them part of a protected class. Anyone claiming to have been discriminated against at work, in a place where the public is served such as a restaurant or a hotel, when buying or renting housing, or when applying for or attending a career school can file a complaint with the BOLI's Civil Rights Division.