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Comprehensive Plan Update public hearings begin

The public process is in full swing on the Comprehensive Plan Update. Now that the Proposed Draft is in front of the Planning and Sustainability Commission, Portlanders can give their feedback directly to the 11-member advisory commission in person or in writing.

Several public hearings in multiple locations have been scheduled from September through the spring of 2015. As Commission Chair André Baugh reiterated at the October 14 hearing at Parkrose High School, “We really want to hear from all of Portland. The PSC is here to listen to the community’s feedback.” To that end, announced Baugh, the written comment period for the goals, policies and land use map will remain open until March 13.

Comments to date

The PSC has received nearly 1,200 comments — the majority via the Map App, but also many by letters and emails. More than 50 people gave oral testimony at the first hearing on September 23; another 35 testified on October 14. The next public hearing will be on Tuesday, October 28 at PCC SE Campus.

The largest number of comments have been about centers and corridors map changes, transportation projects in the Transportation Systems Plan, and new residential designations. On the policy side, the environment and economic policies have attracted the most interest.

Parts of the plan

The Comprehensive Plan includes proposed land use maps, policies, project lists and a supporting document — the Citywide Systems Plan. An Urban Design Direction report serves as an illustrated guide to some of the urban design and urban form policies.

The Comprehensive Plan Map covers all of Portland and some not-annexed areas within Portland’s urban services boundary. Said Project Manager Eric Engstrom at the Parkrose hearing, “Our proposal is to leave much of the existing Comp Plan Map as it is today. The proposed map shows the areas that would change — only about 14 percent of the City’s land area.”

The first of several work sessions is scheduled for November 18. At these meetings, the commissioners will discuss what they’ve heard and deliberate over key issues. The work sessions are open to the public, but no testimony will be taken. Visit the PSC calendar for details and information about which topics will be discussed.

Remaining public hearings

Two more public hearings on the goals, policies and land use map will occur in 2014.

October 28, 2014 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Portland Community College – SE Campus, Community Hall
2305 82nd Avenue

November 4, 2014 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
1900 SW 4th Avenue, Room 2500A

More hearings are scheduled for 2015. In February there will be a hearing on the Transportation System Plan. In early spring the commission will evaluate how well the new long range plan meets Portland Plan goals and verify conformance with state economic planning requirements.

The public will have an opportunity to testify on these topics at public hearings in April. Updates to the 2013 Growth Scenarios Report and Economic Opportunities Analysis will be available in early 2015, prior to these hearings. Check the project website and PSC calendar for more information.

Tentatively, the final PSC work session and vote to recommend the plan to City Council will be in May 2015. After that, Council will hold additional public hearings prior to a summer vote on the entire Comprehensive Plan Update.

For more information about the Comprehensive Plan Proposed Draft, please visit