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On Thursday, Nov. 8, 2012, the Oregon Supreme Court upheld the City of Portland’s River Plan / North Reach, which had been legally challenged by a consortium of riverfront industries. The decision means that the City can lawfully regulate development along the Willamette River.
The River Plan team within the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability worked collaboratively for many years with a variety of stakeholders to develop a plan that fairly balances local economic development goals and natural resource protection. The River Plan / North Reach was adopted unanimously by City Council in April of 2010. It was immediately appealed to the state Land Use Board of Appeals by Gunderson, Schnitzer and other members of the Working Waterfront Coalition. They subsequently appealed to the Court of Appeals and finally the state Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court ruling affirms the City of Portland's authority — and that of all cities along the Willamette River Greenway — to adopt zoning regulations that balance local economic development and natural resource goals.
For more information about the ruling, please see Mayor Sam Adams’ announcement.