Pendleton Downtown Plan

Land Use, Built Form and Zoning

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Land Use, Built Form and Zoning

The Downtown Plan area (approximately 95 acres) is comprised mostly of General Commercial (C1) zoning, with the exception of the Light Industrial (M1) zoning in the Railroad Subdistrict, Medium Density Residential (R2) zoning located in the upper northeast corner of the Study Area (located in proximity to SE 4th Street and SE Byers Avenue), and High Density Residential (R3) zoning on the north side of the Umatilla River.
The built form of the downtown varies widely. The Downtown Core is predominately built-out, with many older buildings set to front and side property lines. Outside the Core, there is less of a continuous building wall and a larger proportion of each lot, on average, is used for parking. Whereas the Downtown Core consists mostly of retail and commercial service uses, with limited upper-story residential uses, the areas outside the Core have a greater proportion of institutional, governmental, light industrial, and residential uses.
The Downtown Plan also includes a mixed-use district called the River Quarter. The City recently adopted a form-based code for the Pendleton River Quarter Enhancement Plan, the purpose of which is to connect Downtown to the Umatilla Riverfront, promote economic development, and improve the River Parkway by placing mixed-use developments and new pocket parks adjacent to it.
For specific information on Downtown land use, built form and zoning, including development and redevelopment projections, please refer to Chapter 6.

Opportunities and Challenges

    The existing C-1 and M-1 regulations will need to be amended in order to implement the Downtown Plan, including but not limited to the following recommendations:

  • Reinforce the pedestrian scale and storefront character of Downtown, particularly for properties fronting Main Street or Court Avenue, and at key gateway locations;

  • Encourage infill and redevelopment and promote a compact, walkable urban form.

  • Encourage adaptive reuse of upper building stories for residential and/or office use;

  • Adopt easy-to-administer design standards/guidelines, including regulations for alterations to historic properties and for new development in historic districts; coordinate code changes with the River Quarter Overlay;

  • Optimize use of existing parking supply through management of public parking and voluntary joint-use of private parking lots, and encourage “parking lot façade improvements” through appropriate landscape standards;

  • Encourage catalyst projects with a mix of uses that are “Uniquely Pendleton,” consistent with the Downtown Plan market analysis; and

  • Enhance existing public open spaces, including plazas, sidewalk café seating and street furnishing areas, and the river pathway.

Element Overview

    Before drafting new zoning regulations, it is important to understand the history of the regulations to be amended and how the organization and structure of a code either supports or inhibits a proposed policy. In the process of developing the Downtown Plan, the City considered the structure of Pendleton’s existing zoning regulations and compared it to the main archetypes for zoning: Euclidean-, Performance-, and Form-based zoning. With the exception of the River Quarter Overlay, In addition the City considered several model ordinances for potential application to Downtown Pendleton.

    Pendleton’s existing regulations fall under the Euclidean model; uses are separated by zone (e.g., residential, commercial, industrial, etc.), and the City has few design (form-based) regulations beyond minimum setbacks, lot coverage, height, parking, and landscaping. The River Quarter Overlay, in contrast, has extensive form-based standards. This Plan recommends a hybrid code combining elements of form-based and Euclidean zoning for Downtown Pendleton, similar to the River Quarter Overlay. For recommended code elements, please refer to Chapter 6.

Multi-modal circulation and effective management of on- and off-street parking are recognized as important elements of an economically successful and thriving Downtown. This Plan balances the need for the efficient movement of vehicles with the needs of pedestrians, bicyclists and transit. This section of the plan formally outlines the specific roadway, pedestrian, bicycle, transit and parking improvements that are envisioned for Downtown Pendleton, including proposed enhancements and design exceptions for two state highway couplets (Emigrant/Fraser and Court/Dorion).

Multi-Modal Circulation Plan

The multi-modal circulation plan balances the need for motorized and non-motorized forms of transportation through modifications to the existing downtown streetscape. Proposed changes are intended to improve pedestrian mobility and safety, enhance existing streetscapes to better accommodate bicycle transportation, accommodate truck traffic and truck deliveries, and ensure that vehicle traffic can progress through Downtown at appropriate speeds.

Street Modifications

Main Street Modifications

The proposed modifications to Main Street will provide a better balance between pedestrian, bicycle and motorized vehicles than currently exists, and reaffirm Main Street as Pendleton’s preeminent multimodal corridor. Modifications are outlined below and detailed further in Chapter 5 (see Figure 4).
  • Convert Main Street from four travel lanes (two northbound lanes and two southbound lanes) to a three-lane cross section (one northbound lane, one southbound lane, and one center turn lane);

  • Widen the existing 10-foot sidewalks to 15-foot sidewalks;

  • Provide curb extensions at all of the Main Street crossings and the state highway crossings;

  • Provide enhanced mid-block crossings along the Main Street corridor; and

  • Optimize on-street parallel parking spaces.

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