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The City of Portland, Oregon

Planning and Sustainability

Innovation. Collaboration. Practical Solutions.

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Portland City Council unanimously adopts the Portland Plan

Commissioners celebrate the city's road map for the next 25 years

Portland’s City Council unanimously voted to adopt the Portland Plan on Wednesday, April 25, 2012. The vote followed the previous week’s public hearing on the plan, at which dozens of partners and community members expressed commitment to this long-range plan to ensure Portland is prosperous, educated, healthy and equitable from now until 2035.

The Portland Plan presents a strategic roadmap to help our city thrive into the future. The result of more than two years of research, dozens of workshops and fairs, hundreds of meetings with community groups, and 20,000 comments from residents, businesses and nonprofits, the plan’s three integrated strategies and framework for advancing equity were designed to help achieve the plan’s goals.

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 practical, measured and strategic.

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.

The Portland Plan strategies focus on Thriving Educated Youth, Economic Prosperity and Affordability, and 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.

“We need plans based less on politics and more on the facts,” said Mayor Sam Adams. “Portland is known for being a well-planned city, but the things we love about our city are not available to all. 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.”

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.


The following are some examples from the five-year action plan:

  • Ensure Portland youth achieve educational success and self-sufficiency through the Cradle to Career initiative, and track youth outcomes from early childhood to early adulthood.

  • Create a neighborhood greenways network by completing 75 miles of new facilities, connecting every quadrant of the city to the Willamette River, creating bike connections to and from neighborhood hubs in southwest and East Portland, and developing a North Portland Neighborhood Greenway from Pier Park to Interstate Avenue.

  • Evaluate equity impacts through building regular assessment into the City’s budget, program and project list development for public services and community development programs, focusing on disparities that communities of color and other marginalized populations face.

  • Develop or update joint-use agreements between Portland Parks and Recreation and all local school districts, exploring coordinated operations, grounds management and shared facilities, particularly in areas underserved by community centers.

  • Evaluate and mitigate the cumulative impact of City fees, including Systems Development Charges, on location and growth decisions of businesses, especially for businesses seeking flexible and lower cost Central City space.

  • Support and expand community-based crime prevention efforts and work to improve communication and understanding between police and the community.


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.

“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.”

Read the Portland Plan – Recommended Draft

Watch the Portland Plan video

PSC News: May 3, 2012 meeting recap and documents

Limited Tax Exemption Programmatic Changes briefing; Single-Family LTE Map Amendment hearing/decision

The Planning and Sustainability Commission met on Thursday, May 3, 2012.


  • Limited Tax Exemption Programmatic Changes - briefing
  • Single-Family LTE Map Amendment - hearing/recommendation

Meeting files:

Meeting minutes, documents and audio recordings of all Planning and Sustainability Commission meetings may be found at


PSC News: May 8, 2012 meeting recap and documents

Schools Background Report hearing/recommendation; West Hayden Island Project Update briefing; Lands Inventory and Employment Opportunity Analysis hearing

The Planning and Sustainability Commission met on Tuesday, May 8, 2012.


  • Portland Plan: Schools Background Report – hearing / recommendation
  • West Hayden Island Project Update – briefing
  • Portland Plan: Buildable Lands Inventory and Employment Opportunity Analysis – hearing

Meeting files:

Meeting minutes, documents and audio recordings of all Planning and Sustainability Commission meetings may be found at


Recap of the May N/NE Quadrant SAC Meeting

Opportunities for Public Comment Coming in June

At their May 10 meeting, the N/NE Quadrant Stakeholder Advisory Committee (SAC) made significant progress on moving forward both Quadrant Plan proposals and the freeway interchange project. Highlights include:

N/NE Quadrant Plan - Zoning and Building Height Proposals

The SAC expressed support for the majority of proposed changes to zoning and building height regulations. Areas identified for additional discussion included mixed-use and employment opportunity subarea zoning in Lower Albina and height regulations on Broadway adjacent to the Eliot andIrvington neighborhoods. These issues will be discussed in more detail at a Subcommittee meeting on May 23 (meeting packet).

I-5 Interchange - North of Broadway Options

The SAC discussed local street configuration options for the area North of Broadway and voted to recommend “Option 3”, which maintains Vancouver and Williams in their current alignment, removes the Flint overpass, and adds a new east-west freeway over crossing extending from Hancock toDixon. This decision resolves the last significant outstanding element needed to form a complete recommended I-5 Broadway/Weidler Interchange project. The next step will be review of the entire project in a draft I-5 Freeway Facility Plan at the June 7 meeting.

See the May 10 meeting packet to review documents and PowerPoint presentations provided at the meeting.

Upcoming Opportunities for Public Comment

There will be two SAC meetings in June, where the public is invited to attend and comment on the draft plan proposals. The June 7 meeting will be focused primarily on the freeway interchange project and the June 28 meeting will be focused on the draft N/NE Quadrant Plan. Additional information and meeting materials will be posted here closer to the June SAC meeting dates.


CC2035 Steering Committee Revises Housing, River, and Green Goals

The Central City 2035 Steering Committee discussed three areas of the policy framework in its sixth meeting on 5/17/12

During its sixth meeting, the Central City 2035 Steering Committee reviewed the Housing & Neighborhoods, Willamette River, and Green Central City sections of the draft policy framework for the Central City 2035 Concept Plan. In their conversation about housing and neighborhoods, the committee discussed livability, historic preservation, mixed-use development, and seismic upgrades. They discussed the challenges of providing public and commercial access to the Willamette River while protecting natural resources. Their Green Central City discussion revolved around energy efficiency, resource conservation, climate change, and human and environmental health.

Read the meeting minutes to catch up on the conversation. The Steering Committee will meet again on June 12 to discuss the Urban Design plan and review a revised version of the draft policy framework.

For questions or comments about the meeting or the CC2035 Concept Plan, please contact Troy Doss at (503) 823-5857 or by email at