Economic Improvement District

The City of Oregon City contracts with Main Street Oregon City (dba Downtown Oregon City Association) to administer the funds collected on behalf of the Economic Improvement District. As a 501c(3) non-profit, the association is able to utilize other funding sources to greatly reduce the cost of services to the district. Expenditures vary by year, but in general, the association is able to invest 4 times of what is collected in fees.

Strategic Objectives

  • Reduce vacancy to lower than 5%.
  • Activate first floor uses.
  • Develop housing units within district.
  • Continued investment in existing structures.
  • Activate public spaces.
  • Integrate downtown with mill site.
  • Partner with and support city downtown economic development objectives.
  • Create a stronger link between north end of downtown and historic core.

What is an EID?

Economic Improvement Districts are designated commercial districts within which property owners agree to self-assess a fee that funds a higher level of service than otherwise provided by a municipality. Oregon City’s downtown Economic Improvement District has been in place since April 2011. EIDs can be renewed indefinitely for up to five years at a time with the approval of district property owners.

Most districts in Oregon are renewed. McMinnville has had an EID for 28 years!

How are EID’s created?

Typically, a representative group of property owners work to gather support for the district’s creation. An ordinance is proposed by the city commission and open for public comment. If property owners representing more than two-thirds of the assessment fees choose not to object, the district is formed or renewed.

What is downtown’s fee structure?

Property owners within Oregon City’s district are assessed 0.5% of their property value as determined by the county tax assessor up to a maximum of $975 per year. Any portion of a property that includes residential is excluded from the assessed value.

How is the EID represented?

The Downtown Oregon City Association is led by a 9 to 13 member board of directors representing property owners, businesses, and Oregon City residents. While the composition of the board varies from year to year, every director has an expressed interest in the revitalization of downtown Oregon City. The association is a nationally accredited “Main Street” following a model that has leveraged nearly $60 billion in investment in nearly 2,000 communities. Focusing on what economists call the “four forces of property value,” social, political, physical, and economic, the association’s work not only drives vitality but accelerates the return on investment of district property owners.