Oregon Statewide Housing Plan

Oregon Housing and Community Services has released County Housing Profiles as part of their development of a statewide Housing Plan.  You can see Wasco County’s data here: http://www.oregon.gov/ohcs/DO/shp/profiles/Wasco-County-Housing-Profile.pdf

The data sheet gives information on  wages related to housing affordability, home ownership rates, and some other indicators of economic and housing health.  Data shows that there is a deficit in lower income housing availability in Wasco County, and that lower income households are paying more of their income towards housing than higher incomes.  While our median house sales prices in 2015 were still significantly lower than other regions of the state, we see that trends towards increasing housing costs will continue to create gaps of affordability in Wasco County.

During our visioning phase, we did hear from community members that housing affordability was an issue.  We are exploring ways to add capacity in certain areas, or increase education about the opportunities currently available in the County, to meet that demand.

We hope that you will continue to share your thoughts and ideas related to housing issues in Wasco County!

New Lots in Resource Zones (Farm & Forest)

newlotsresourceIn trying to understand how our land use planning policies and rules have impacted development and growth to date, staff analyzed existing data.  One of the key issues we wanted to understand was growth potential based on our current regulations.

The infographic below demonstrates, based on our current zoning designations and rules, the potential new lots available for creation in our natural resource zones (farm and forest).  Although not all of these lots would necessarily be eligible for development like a new dwelling, it still gives us a rough picture of the future potential for new densities of activity.

The large number of potential new parcels in the A-1 (160) Zone (Exclusive Farm Use) reflect the many large ranches and farms we have throughout the county that are significantly larger than 160 acres.  The map shows the concentration of those larger farms and ranches is in the middle of the county.

With over 98 percent of non-National Scenic Area lands in one of our natural resource zones, it important to understand how things like our minimum parcel size requirements for each zone (160, 40 and 80) impact future divisions and the creation of new lots.

NewLotsResourceZones (2)