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Portland City Council unanimously adopts the Portland Plan

BPS E-News Issue 17-June 2012

On April 25, 2012, Portland’s City Council unanimously voted to adopt the Portland Plan. The vote followed a public hearing on the plan, at which dozens of partners and community members expressed commitment to this long-range plan to ensure Portland is more prosperous, educated, healthy and equitable as we move toward 2035. See a recap of the public hearing and listen to what people had to say about the plan.

The Portland Plan presents a roadmap to help our city thrive into the future. Developed in response to some of Portland’s most pressing challenges, including income disparities, high unemployment, a low high school graduation rate and environmental concerns, the Portland Plan is a plan for people, with equity at its core.

Portland is becoming a more racially, ethnically and age-diverse city, and nearly 40 percent of Portland’s youth are people of color. But not all Portlanders have equitable access to opportunities to achieve their full potential. Greater equity in the city as a whole is essential to our long-term success.

“Portland is known for being a well-planned city, but the things we love about our city are not available to all,” said Mayor Sam Adams. “In a resource-constrained world, the Portland Plan recognizes that single actions must produce multiple benefits. This plan provides a framework for public agencies to maximize fiscal leverage and impact by aligning priorities and the budgets that support them.”

The Portland Plan strategies focus on Thriving Educated Youth, Economic Prosperity and Affordability, and a Healthy Connected City. Each strategy contains policies and five-year actions that will help us reach our goals, with special emphasis placed on those disparities related to race and ability.  View the new Portland Plan video here.

“City staff researched plans from around the world — from Sydney, Australia to Copenhagen, Denmark and Denver, Colo. to New York City — to determine best practices and gather inspiration for the Portland Plan,” stated BPS Director Susan Anderson. “There’s no other city that is planning for change in quite the same way, with so many partners in alignment and ready to collaborate to reach our common goals.”

The Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) led the development of the plan with extensive input from nine Technical Advisory Groups, public and nonprofit agencies, the business community and thousands of Portland residents. With a broader focus on economic, social and environmental sustainability, BPS provides the resources for problem-solving in a more integrated fashion with a broader set of tools beyond the comprehensive plan and zoning code.
Collectively, the public agencies that operate within the City of Portland spend more than $8 billion annually. The Portland Plan challenges the City and its more than 20 agency partners (including Multnomah County, school districts, Metro, TriMet and others) to break down traditional bureaucratic silos and be innovative with new budget approaches.


From BPS Director Susan Anderson: Sustainable business goes mainstream

BPS E-News Issue 17-June 2012

We recently celebrated the 20th annual BEST Awards and the success of Portland’s greatest green businesses with an energizing event at Portland’s The Nines Hotel. When we hosted the first BEST Awards in 1992, our intention was to showcase the best new ideas that would help businesses understand how sustainability and resource efficiency could benefit their employees, their bottom line and the environment. This video shows just how far Portland businesses have advanced in the last 20 years.

Reflecting on the dizzying rate of progress made me realize that many cutting-edge green efforts are now part of the mainstream, and local companies understand that incorporating sustainable practices is good for business. That’s why, after 20 years of celebrating Portland’s pioneers, we’re forging a new partnership with Sustainable Business Oregon’s (SBO) annual innovation awards. Read more about this here.

So how do pioneering practices become the norm? We can point to a few reasons: Strong vision from community leaders, innovative businesses, and an engaged community all working together. It also requires less obvious things like creative financing, compelling communications, public-private partnerships, and forming accessible, replicable programs that allow us to share best practices with others. Some more examples include Clean Energy Works Oregon and the neighborhood Solarize campaigns. Both of these programs scaled up quickly and are now operating in communities throughout Oregon.

What’s next in Portland? While we’re often recognized as a leading U.S. city for urban planning, the mayor challenged us to think beyond past successes and create a new citywide plan with a focus on people and advancing equity.  City leaders from around the U.S. are taking interest in this new, more holistic and collaborative approach.

Sharing technology, financial and program expertise with other cities is part of how we learn and grow. I participate regularly in meetings with planning and sustainability directors from other cities like Seattle, San Francisco, Austin, Chicago, New York and elsewhere. Our work several years ago on policy options for improving performance in commercial buildings helped shape similar efforts in New York, Seattle, and San Francisco, and their experiences are now informing our emerging building efficiency partnership with BOMA, PDC, and others.

As we plan for Portland in 2035 – and take action today – I’m inspired by the multitude of creative public and private partnerships and our capacity for growth and innovation in the city and the region.  I look forward to seeing what’s around the corner.


All the best,



Susan Anderson


Bureau of Planning and Sustainability


ReTHINK = Climate Education + Community Action

BPS E-News Issue 17-June 2012

At BPS, community outreach happens with a tailored approach to engage community groups in their own neighborhoods. This winter, BPS’ ReTHINK program partnered with the Portland Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, owners of the June Key Delta Community Center (JKDCC). They were selected because of the organization’s long history of community involvement and leadership within Portland’s African American community.

The ReTHINK program partners with host organizations to provide sustainability and climate change education through a series of three workshops. Hosts are selected for their ability to reach diverse and/or  low-income residents and to engage their members in a community action project. The goal of the program is to empower communities with both the information and the resources to make meaningful progress in reducing carbon emissions.

This past year, the ReTHINK program was expanded to include a small grant for the host organization to implement a community action project related to climate change.
Additionally, JKDCC is on its way to achieving the highest green building certification of a Living Building, reflecting the organization’s commitment to sustainability. They applied to ReTHINK to inspire their members and community to engage in practices that would support the goals and values of the Center and that can be applied at home.

On Saturday, April 21, 2012, community members gathered for an array of workshops and family friendly Earth Day activities at the Center. The theme for JKDCC’s Earth Day event was “Healthy People, Healthy Planet”, emphasizing that what is good for the community is good for the planet, and vice versa. Workshops included composting, gardening, nutrition, and DIY energy conservation.

“We remain committed to educating our members and the surrounding community on the impacts of climate change and opportunities to make a difference. Earth Day participants continue to discuss and practice the lessons learned during the event, we anticipate that the impact of these lessons will multiply throughout the community.” Vera Pool, President of the Portland Alumnae Chapter Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

The ReTHINK program will continue this spring at Self Enhancement Inc. If you are interested in the ReTHINK program for your community group, contact Desiree Williams-Rajee at


Airport Community Advisory Committee Focuses on Port of Portland Strategic Plan

Advisory Committee meets on June 7; public invited to attend and comment

BPS News

June 4, 2012


Kama Simonds


Airport Community Advisory Committee Focuses on Port of Portland Strategic Plan

The Portland International Airport Community Advisory Committee will meet from 2:30-5:30 p.m. Thursday, June 7 at the Port of Portland Headquarters, 7200 NE Airport Way, eighth floor Chinook Conference Room. The public is invited and public comment is welcome.

Highlights of the agenda will include an overview of the Port strategic plan, and the PDX business plan, capital program and public involvement program. The agenda will include an update on airport business, construction, long-range planning and sustainability by Port Chief Operating Officer Vince Granato. A full agenda is available at

The 30-member advisory committee is an outgrowth of the Airport Futures planning process – a three-year planning process which created a long-range plan for PDX. The committee is charged with providing meaningful input on airport-related planning and development, and overseeing the implementation of Airport Futures. The committee is sponsored by three entities: City of Portland, Port of Portland and City of Vancouver. The group meets quarterly. 

Public Invited to Comment on Recommended I-5 Broadway/Weidler Interchange Improvements, June 7 @ 5:30 p.m.

SAC meeting and public comment session on June 7, 2012

The N/NE Quadrant Stakeholder Advisory Committee (SAC) has been working for over a year and a half to address safety and operations issues that affect all modes of transportation travelling through the I-5 Broadway/Weidler Interchange and surrounding local streets. Their work will culminate at a June 7 meeting, when recommended improvements to the area will be presented in a draft I-5 Facility Plan. The public is invited to attend and comment on the proposal.

N/NE Quadrant Stakeholder Advisory Committee Meeting

Public Comments Invited

Thursday, June 7, 2012

5:30 – 8:30 p.m. (presentation at 5:30 p.m., public comment at 6:00)

Rose Garden Arena, RoseRoom, One Center Court


Directions: Enter the Rose Garden at the “Club and Suites Entrance” across from the Box Office and go to level P4. The Rose Room is through the double glass doors. Free parking is available in the Garden or Annex Parking Garages (let them know you are attending the City meeting). See map and detailed directions.

Main Elements of the Recommended I-5 Broadway/Weidler Interchange Improvements

The draft I-5 Facility Plan includes a detailed description and illustrations of the recommended improvements to the areas, including:

  • Extend auxiliary lanes and full-width shoulders in both directions (within existing right-of-way).
  • Reconstruct structures at Broadway, Weidler, Vancouver and Williams in their current alignment and add a lid over the freeway.
  • Move the I-5 southbound on-ramp from Wheeler/Winning Way to Weidler.
  • Convert Williams to reverse traffic flow with a center bike/pedestrian lane between Broadway and Weidler.
  • Construct a new pedestrian/bike overcrossing at Clackamas Street.
  • Remove the Flint structure and add a new east-west overcrossing extending from Hancock to Dixon.

After hearing public comments on the draft I-5 Facility Plan, the SAC will discuss the plan and potentially take action to endorse the plan.

A similar opportunity for public comment on the draft N/NE Quadrant Plan will be provided at the June 28 SAC meeting.

For more information about the draft I-5 Facility Plan, please contact Todd Juhasz, ODOT Project Manager at 503-731-4753.