Washington County building boom

According to a recent Oregonian article, applications for building permits in Washington County, Oregon are on pace to break records in 2015, in a large part due to the insatiable multifamily housing market.  In fiscal year 2007-2008, the county received four applications for multi-family buildings for a total of 211 units. In the past two years multifamily developers filed 22 and 24 applications, respectively, offering a total of 868 units. The county estimates that 30 applications, involving 700 units, will be filed this fiscal year alone. The number of plans reviewed by the development staff is forecast at 5,000 this year, higher than the 4,285 plans reviewed in 2007.  This has left the county scrambling to find enough qualified building inspectors to meet demand.  Nearly 10 inspector and plan-review positions are currently vacant. Though the county has launched an out-of-state recruitment effort and is putting together an in-house internship program to train current county employees to handle some of those tasks, processing delays may be inevitable.