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The City of Portland, Oregon

Planning and Sustainability

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1900 SW 4th Ave, Suite 7100, Portland, OR 97201

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Portlanders' Access to Affordable, Healthful Food Improved by Changes to Regulations

City Council public hearing on Zoning Code amendments scheduled for June 7 at 2 p.m.

A proposal to improve access to affordable, healthful food for all Portlanders -- especially those with limited access -- will be discussed by City Council on June 7 at 2 p.m. The recommended draft of the Urban Food Zoning Code Update project supports neighborhood-scale community gardens, market gardens, farmers markets, food buying clubs and community supported agriculture (CSAs).  

Funding from Multnomah County’s Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) Initiative supported this unique and valuable partnership between the City’s Bureau of Planning and Sustainability and the Oregon Public Health Institute (OPHI) to make affordable, healthful food accessible to all Portlanders, especially those in underserved communities.  
City Council Public Hearing on the
Urban Food Zoning Code Update – Recommended Draft
June 7 at 2 p.m.
The Portland Building, 2nd Floor Auditorium
1120 SW 5th Ave (across from City Hall)
Recommended Amendments
The new regulations are clear and provide flexibility, while protecting the surrounding neighborhoods from potential negative impacts.

  • Market Gardens (produce is grown for sale). Currently, market gardens are only allowed in a few zones (employment, open space, and very low density residential zones). The recommended amendments allow them in all zones (with size limits in residential zones) and include regulations that address neighborhood livability.
  • Community Gardens (produce is grown for personal consumption or donation). Currently, community gardens are allowed in all zones. The recommended amendments continue to allow them in all zones and add regulations that address neighborhood livability.
  • Food Membership Distribution Sites. Currently, the zoning code is unclear how to regulate the pick-up sites for food buying clubs and community supported agriculture (CSA) organizations. The recommended amendments allow food membership distribution sites in all zones and include regulations that address neighborhood livability. 
  • Farmers Markets. Currently, farmers markets are regulated as temporary uses and these regulations can be confusing and expensive. The recommended amendments add regulations specifically for farmers markets that address location, frequency, number of "non-farmer" vendors and when markets may set up on parking lots.

How can I review this proposal?
Get a copy of the report. The Urban Food Zoning Code Update – Recommended Draft is available on the project website at You can pick up a copy at the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability at 1900 SW 4th Avenue, 7th Floor. To have a copy mailed to you, please call 503-823-7700.

How can I comment on this proposal?
Testify at the City Council hearing. Due to maintenance in Council Chambers, the hearing on Thursday, June 7 at 2:00 p.m. will be held in the Portland Building, 2nd Floor Auditorium, 1120 SW 5th Avenue, across the street from City Hall.
Write to City Council. Mail written testimony to the Council Clerk at 1221 SW 4th Avenue, Room 140, Portland, OR 97204, or FAX comments to 503-823-4571. Written testimony must be received by the time of the hearing and must include your name and address.
The City of Portland is committed to providing equal access to information. If you need accommodation, please contact us by phone 503-823-7700, by the city’s TTY at 503-823-6868 or by the Oregon Relay Service at 1-800-735-2900.

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. 

Pivotal Leaders group honors Susan Anderson

BPS E-News Issue 17-June 2012

The Pivotal Leaders network recently named BPS Director Susan Anderson to their list of 2012's top Northwest cleantech leaders. Every year, Pivotal Leaders honors and connects the Northwest’s most innovative and talented cleantech executives.

This peer-selected list of leaders helps the Northwest region build on its strong ethos of innovation around resources and sustainability, creating more jobs and new companies. The end goal is to make this region an international leader in the rapidly growing cleantech economy. Cleantech includes a diverse range of products, services, and processes that harness renewable materials and energy sources, dramatically reduce the use of natural resources, and cut or eliminate emissions and waste.

Other 2012 leaders include Margi Hoffmann, Office of Governor John Kitzhaber, Sam Pardue, Indow Windows and Rachel Shimshak, Renewable Northwest Project. Please join us in congratulating Susan Anderson for this recognition.  See the complete 2012 list of honorees and read more details about the Pivotal Leaders effort at .


Proposed changes to city's food regulations unanimously approved by PSC

BPS E-News Issue 17-June 2012

Portlanders are one step closer to gaining greater access to healthful, locally-grown food in their neighborhoods. On April 24, 2012, the Planning and Sustainability Commission (PSC) unanimously approved the proposed zoning code changes in the Urban Food Zoning Code Proposed Draft.

The Urban Food Zoning Code Update project recognizes the connections between food and the community’s environmental, economic and physical health and promotes traditional and emerging ways of producing and distributing food.

The recommended changes support community gardens, farmers markets and small scale market gardens. Alternative distribution methods such as community sponsored agriculture (CSA) and food buying clubs were also promoted at a scale that is appropriate to neighborhoods and helps build community. Project staff was aided by a Code Development Advisory Group, which helped sift through the existing code regulations and develop recommended changes that support these activities, while also protecting the surrounding neighborhoods.

The Urban Food Zoning Code Recommended Draft, which is the PSC recommendation to City Council, will be published by May 21. The City Council public hearing is scheduled for Thursday, June 7, 2012, 2 p.m. time certain in the Portland Building, 2nd floor auditorium, 1120 SW 5th Avenue (across from City Hall).

If you operate a market garden, food membership distribution site and/or farmers market, visit to learn more about "grandfathered rights” and fill out a short questionnaire to be included in the inventory. This will establish your right to continue to operate at your current level — even if you don’t meet new regulations approved by City Council. Project staff is offering this inventory as a service; after June 6, 2012, you will be required to go through a more rigorous process to document that you existed and are eligible for “grandfathered rights.”

For more information, please contact Julia Gisler at or 503-823-7624.

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