2017 ORS 215.780¹
Minimum lot or parcel sizes
  • land division to establish a dwelling
  • recordation

(1) Except as provided in subsection (2) of this section, the following minimum lot or parcel sizes apply to all counties:

(a) For land zoned for exclusive farm use and not designated rangeland, at least 80 acres;

(b) For land zoned for exclusive farm use and designated rangeland, at least 160 acres; and

(c) For land designated forestland, at least 80 acres.

(2) A county may adopt a lower minimum lot or parcel size than that described in subsection (1) of this section in any of the following circumstances:

(a) When the county can demonstrate to the Land Conservation and Development Commission that the county can adopt a lower minimum lot or parcel size while continuing to meet the requirements of ORS 215.243 (Agricultural land use policy) and 527.630 (Policy) and the land use planning goals adopted under ORS 197.230 (Considerations).

(b) To divide by partition an area of land zoned for forest use to create a parcel for a dwelling that has existed since before June 1, 1995, subject to the following requirements:

(A) The parcel created may not be larger than five acres, except as necessary to recognize physical factors such as roads or streams, in which case the parcel may not be larger than 10 acres; and

(B) The parcel that does not contain the dwelling is not entitled to a dwelling unless subsequently authorized by law or goal and the parcel either:

(i) Meets the minimum lot or parcel size of the zone; or

(ii) Is consolidated with another parcel, and together the parcels meet the minimum lot or parcel size of the zone.

(c) To divide by partition an area of land zoned for mixed farm and forest use to create a parcel for a dwelling that has existed since before June 1, 1995, subject to the following requirements:

(A) The parcel created may not be larger than five acres, except as necessary to recognize physical factors such as roads or streams, in which case the parcel may not be larger than 10 acres;

(B) The parcel that does not contain the dwelling is not entitled to a dwelling unless subsequently authorized by law or goal and the parcel either:

(i) Meets the minimum lot or parcel size of the zone; or

(ii) Is consolidated with another parcel, and together the parcels meet the minimum lot or parcel size of the zone;

(C) The minimum tract eligible under this paragraph is 40 acres;

(D) The tract must be predominantly in forest use and that portion in forest use qualified for special assessment under a program under ORS chapter 321; and

(E) The remainder of the tract does not qualify for any uses allowed under ORS 215.213 (Uses permitted in exclusive farm use zones in counties that adopted marginal lands system prior to 1993) and 215.283 (Uses permitted in exclusive farm use zones in nonmarginal lands counties) that are not allowed on forestland.

(d) To allow a division by partition of forestland to facilitate a forest practice as defined in ORS 527.620 (Definitions for ORS 527.610 to 527.770) that results in a parcel that does not meet the minimum area requirements of subsection (1)(c) of this section or paragraph (a) of this subsection. Parcels created pursuant to this subsection:

(A) Are not eligible for siting of a new dwelling;

(B) May not serve as the justification for the siting of a future dwelling on other lots or parcels;

(C) May not, as a result of the land division, be used to justify redesignation or rezoning of resource lands; and

(D) May not result in a parcel of less than 35 acres, unless the purpose of the land division is to:

(i) Facilitate an exchange of lands involving a governmental agency; or

(ii) Allow transactions in which at least one participant is a person with a cumulative ownership of at least 2,000 acres of forestland.

(e) To allow a division by partition of a lot or parcel zoned for forest use or mixed farm and forest use under a statewide planning goal protecting forestland if:

(A) At least two dwellings lawfully existed on the lot or parcel prior to November 4, 1993;

(B) Each dwelling complies with the criteria for a replacement dwelling under ORS 215.213 (Uses permitted in exclusive farm use zones in counties that adopted marginal lands system prior to 1993) (1)(q) or 215.283 (Uses permitted in exclusive farm use zones in nonmarginal lands counties) (1)(p);

(C) Except for one parcel, each parcel created under this paragraph is between two and five acres in size;

(D) At least one dwelling is located on each parcel created under this paragraph; and

(E) The landowner of a parcel created under this paragraph provides evidence that a restriction prohibiting the landowner and the landowner’s successors in interest from further dividing the parcel has been recorded with the county clerk of the county in which the parcel is located. A restriction imposed under this paragraph is irrevocable unless a statement of release is signed by the county planning director of the county in which the parcel is located indicating that the comprehensive plan or land use regulations applicable to the parcel have been changed so that the parcel is no longer subject to statewide planning goals protecting forestland or unless the land division is subsequently authorized by law or by a change in a statewide planning goal for land zoned for forest use or mixed farm and forest use.

(f) To allow a proposed division of land in a forest zone or a mixed farm and forest zone as provided in ORS 215.783 (Land division to preserve open space or park).

(3) A county planning director shall maintain a record of lots and parcels that do not qualify for division under the restrictions imposed under subsections (2)(e) and (4) of this section. The record must be readily available to the public.

(4) A lot or parcel may not be divided under subsection (2)(e) of this section if an existing dwelling on the lot or parcel was approved under:

(a) A statute, an administrative rule or a land use regulation as defined in ORS 197.015 (Definitions for ORS chapters 195, 196, 197 and ORS 197A.300 to 197A.325) that required removal of the dwelling or that prohibited subsequent division of the lot or parcel; or

(b) A farm use zone provision that allowed both farm and forest uses in a mixed farm and forest use zone under a statewide planning goal protecting forestland.

(5) A county with a minimum lot or parcel size acknowledged by the commission pursuant to ORS 197.251 (Compliance acknowledgment) after January 1, 1987, or acknowledged pursuant to periodic review requirements under ORS 197.628 (Periodic review) to 197.651 (Appeal to Court of Appeals for judicial review of final order of Land Conservation and Development Commission) that is smaller than those prescribed in subsection (1) of this section need not comply with subsection (2) of this section.

(6)(a) An applicant for the creation of a parcel pursuant to subsection (2)(b) and (c) of this section shall provide evidence that a restriction on the remaining parcel, not containing the dwelling, has been recorded with the county clerk of the county where the property is located. An applicant for the creation of a parcel pursuant to subsection (2)(d) of this section shall provide evidence that a restriction on the newly created parcel has been recorded with the county clerk of the county where the property is located. The restriction may not allow a dwelling unless authorized by law or goal on land zoned for forest use except as permitted under subsection (2) of this section.

(b) A restriction imposed under this subsection is irrevocable unless a statement of release is signed by the county planning director of the county where the property is located indicating that the comprehensive plan or land use regulations applicable to the property have been changed in such a manner that the parcel is no longer subject to statewide planning goals pertaining to agricultural land or forestland.

(c) The county planning director shall maintain a record of parcels that do not qualify for the siting of a new dwelling under restrictions imposed by this subsection. The record must be readily available to the public.

(7) A landowner allowed a land division under subsection (2) of this section shall sign a statement that must be recorded with the county clerk of the county in which the property is located, declaring that the landowner and the landowner’s successors in interest will not in the future complain about accepted farming or forest practices on nearby lands devoted to farm or forest use. [1993 c.792 §7; 1995 c.700 §1; 1999 c.348 §14; 2001 c.531 §1; 2007 c.143 §3; 2009 c.850 §12; 2013 c.88 §1; 2015 c.104 §6]

Notes of Decisions

Minimum parcel size require­ments are applicable to exclusive farm use lot division made for purpose of allowing nonfarm dwelling. Dorvinen v. Crook County, 153 Or App 391, 957 P2d 180 (1998), Sup Ct review denied

Parcel resulting from prop­erty line adjust­ment is subject to min­i­mum parcel size require­ment regardless of whether parcel met size require­ment before adjust­ment. Phillips v. Polk County, 213 Or App 498, 162 P3d 338 (2007), Sup Ct review denied

Law Review Cita­tions

36 WLR 441 (2000); 36 EL 25 (2006)

Chapter 215

Notes of Decisions

Published notice is adequate if prop­erty owners can reasonably ascertain that prop­erty in which they hold interest may be affected. Clackamas County v. Emmert, 14 Or App 493, 513 P2d 532 (1973), Sup Ct review denied

Statutory scheme es­tab­lishing LCDC and granting it authority to es­tab­lish state-wide land use planning goals does not unconstitu­tionally delegate legislative power where both standards (under this chapter) and safeguards ([former] ORS 197.310) exist. Meyer v. Lord, 37 Or App 59, 586 P2d 367 (1978)

Where county had not yet adopted comprehensive plan but had zoned certain por­tions “primarily agricultural,” county had not enacted adequate interim measures to protect its agricultural land until exclusive farm use zoning was completed. Columbia County v. LCDC, 44 Or App 749, 606 P2d 1184 (1980)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Fasano v. Bd. of County Commrs., applica­tion to county governing bodies and planning com­mis­sions, (1974) Vol 36, p 960; binding effect on govern­mental agencies of the adop­tion of interim Willamette River Greenway boundaries, (1975) Vol 37, p 894

Law Review Cita­tions

36 EL 25 (2006)

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 215—County Planning; Zoning; Housing Codes, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors215.­html (2017) (last ac­cessed Mar. 30, 2018).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2017, Chapter 215, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano215.­html (2017) (last ac­cessed Mar. 30, 2018).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.