Urban & Rural Land Use Districts

Urban Area

Washington County Current Planning Services receives and processes urban land use applications for those unincorporated areas located within the Urban Growth Boundary, but not within the boundary of an incorporated city (i.e. Hillsboro, Beaverton, Tigard, Sherwood, Tualatin, Banks, North Plains, Forest Grove, Cornelius, Sherwood, King City, Gaston, and Portland).

Washington County's goal within the urban unincorporated area is to provide for compact urban development while providing those urban services, transit, open space, and parks necessary to maintain and enhance the quality of life for County residents.

Urban land use applications within the Urban area of Washington County are required to be processed within 120 days of completeness, but are generally processed sooner than allowed.

18 different Land Use District classifications that identify suitable land uses are located within the Urban unincorporated area of Washington County.  For a list of these land use districts and what uses are allowed within these districts, please click on the link provided below:


Rural Area

Washington County is responsible  for accepting and processing land use applications located in the rural unincorporated area.  The areas that make up the rural unincorporated portion of Washington County are those areas that are not located within the boundary of any cities or are not located within the boundary of the Urban Growth Boundary.

The major land use goal within the rural area of Washington County is to protect forest and farm land from development by limiting the development that can occur within rural land use districts.  Land use regulations within the rural district also limit the amount of development within Significant Natural Resources.

Land use applications submitted for proposed uses within the the rural area are allowed 150 days for processing and decision. 

Please click the link below for a list of all the land use districts that are located within the Rural Area.

Rural Land Use Districts

The following are the Land Use Districts located within the Rural area of Washington County.  The links below will provide a copy of the land use regulations associated with the specific land use district: