HBA staff and Portland Building and Urban Development Council (PBUD) members recently met with Portland Housing Bureau Director Shannon Callahan and staff to discuss concerns regarding the approval process for the Floor Area Ratio (FAR) Deeper Affordability Density Bonus. Designed to incentivize creating affordable units as part of multi-unit developments, the qualifications are simple; to get the bonus a certain number of units must qualify at either 60% median family income (MFI) for rental units or 80% for unit ownership. The Deeper Housing Affordability FAR Density Bonus Program published on June 1, 2021, uses already existing processes and program requirements to ease implementation as well as create a synergy between a myriad of “affordability bonus” programs offered by the city; a “qualify for one, qualify for all system.” Although market rate developers understand the need for alignment between programs, there is some concern that these processes, when fully applied to this bonus, may be a disincentive for them to participate. The PHB, recognizing that having market rate and affordable housing developers participating in these programs means more housing, and specifically affordable units, is working with HBA to find solutions that align with the intent of the program while still encouraging developer participation. The Deeper Affordability Density Bonus was included with a package of code updates referred to as the Residential Infill Project in August 2020 with an effective date of August 1, 2021. Affordability, for a household of three, is defined as 60% MFI, currently $1,306, for renters and 80% MFI, $69,650, for ownership. HBA staff and PBUD members will continue to work with PHB until the rules are finalized August 1, 2021. If you are interested in learning more or participating in the conversation, contact Ryan Makinster at firstname.lastname@example.org.