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City of Chicago publishes US EPA's Climate Change website

Portland prioritizes local action on climate change and supports Chicago's efforts at making the EPA's information available to the public

For decades, the City of Portland has valued and prioritized local action on climate change.

“Climate change is one of the most pressing issues of our time, and the most pressing global issue we face. Any vision for the future of our city needs to acknowledge climate change. It isn’t just our planet that’s at stake, it’s our very existence.” – Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler

Partnership with the world’s greatest cities has become more important than ever to influence the global conversations on climate change. Through collaborations like the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, the Urban Sustainability Directors Network and the Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance, cities are sharing best practices, challenges and successes.

To support this important work, Portland would like to take this opportunity to thank the City of Chicago for publishing the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s website on climate change in its entirety:

“The City of Chicago wishes to acknowledge and attribute this information to the United States Environmental Protection Agency and other federal agencies for the decades of work that they have done to advance the fight against climate change. While this information may not be readily available on the agency’s webpage right now, here in Chicago we know climate change is real and we will continue to take action to fight it.”

Portland’s New Open Data Policy will Improve Public Trust and Build Civic Engagement

City Council’s endorsement sets wheels in motion to create a policy and program to make more City data readily accessible to the community.

On Wednesday, May 3rd, Portland City Council enthusiastically adopted an Open Data Ordinance to establish an Open Data Policy and Open Data Program in the City of Portland, culminating an effort that began with the passage of Resolution No. 36735 in 2009 declaring Portland’s commitment to Open Data.

“In 2009, Portland was the very first jurisdiction to declare its commitment to Open Data,” said Mayor Ted Wheeler. “Portland continues to be on the cutting edge, now taking this important next step to set up policies to implement an Open Data Program in the City.”

Establishing an Open Data Policy and Program and a system of data governance in the City of Portland will:

  1. Increase transparency and improve public trust.
  2. Build civic participation and engagement.
  3. Improve access to data to inform and improve decision-making.
  4. Reduce staff time devoted to responding to requests for City data.
  5. Grow the likelihood of data-driven innovations in the private sector that increase the social and commercial value of City assets and improve the delivery of City services.

The Open Data Policy and Program are fundamental to the City of Portland’s “Smart Cities” efforts. Shared, standardized systems for collecting, managing, analyzing and distributing data are foundational requirements to meet Portland’s goals to use data to inform decisions, to design and evaluate policies and programs and to partner with the private sector to meet City goals around livability, affordability, safety, sustainability and equity.

“This program will bring a powerful tool to our residents, local businesses and mission-driven organizations,“ remarked Commissioner Dan Saltzman. “Open Data is about fostering transparency and efficiency in government.”

Advancing an Open Data policy for the City of Portland has been part of the City’s partnership with Bloomberg Philanthropies’ What Works Cities (WWC) initiative, which helps cities enhance their use of data and evidence to improve residents’ lives. Portland’s selection to the initiative was announced in September of 2016. The Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) has been leading the Open Data effort in partnership with the City Budget Office (CBO). BPS and CBO worked with technical experts from two of WWC’s partners, the Center for Government Excellence at Johns Hopkins University and the Sunlight Foundation, to develop the Open Data Ordinance.

By adopting the Open Data Ordinance, City Council:

  1. Established a general Open Data policy: The City will be committed to the publication, accessibility and equitable and widespread sharing of data collected and generated by all City bureaus and by private sector companies, non-profit organizations, academic universities and other parties working on behalf of the City. The City will strive to make data open by default.
  2. Created an Open Data Program to implement the policy.
  3. Established a Data Governance team, which will include representatives from multiple bureaus, to determine the overall direction of the Open Data Program, develop more specific data-sharing policies, and to engage external stakeholders in program design and implementation.

The Bureau of Planning and Sustainability will be tasked with the initial implementation of the program, in partnership with the Mayor’s Office, the City Budget Office, the Bureau of Technology Services and other City bureaus.

“I think what is really before us here today is another way to advance the core values of our City around access and transparency, empowering the public, and ultimately being accountable,” commented Commissioner Nick Fish. “And when we get those right, there is greater public trust in our work.”

Mayor Wheeler added, “This is an essential first step to democratizing our data.”


Green Loop and Untitled Studios bring the community together at Design Week PDX

Excitement about and interest in the proposed six-mile linear park around the Central City shows that this urban design concept has arrived!

As the main attraction at Design Week PDX, the Green Loop concept didn’t just meet expectations for community engagement, it knocked them out of the ball park. It seemed that the work of Untitled Studios was a perfect fit for the DWP Headquarters in the Central Eastside’s The Redd.

The group of young designers and architects filled the 20,000 square foot space with myriad displays, interactive exhibits and plenty of opportunities to learn about and comment on the proposed loop for walkers, strollers and bikers of all ages and abilities.

Throughout Design Week, people could wander through the Headquarters building and experience Untitled Studios’ at their own pace.


Think about it: What would you like to see happen along the Green Loop route?


In addition to the displays, interactive maps and a life-size mockup of the loop, DWP featured several presentations and discussions focusing on the Green Loop. Hundreds of Portlanders came to listen, learn and workshop how the Green Loop is “a new type of civic ecology,” “a tool for social good,” and the subject of “Branding Strategies for Public Space.”

The University of Oregon held a design charrette with dozens of participants about how the Green Loop could serve as a new type of civic ecology for Portland.

Beer and virtual reality tour feature the Green Loop

And as if that weren’t enough, Portland’s own HUB brewery developed a special edition IPA just for Design Week PDX. The Green Loop IPA was on tap at the opening night party, where more than 800 people enjoyed the beer, cotton candy, dancing, speed portrait drawing and a virtual reality experience of the loop.

This is what it looked like from the outside …

And from the inside (with goggles) …

Participants said the VR experience made the case for the Green Loop. “After experiencing the VR version of the Green Loop, I felt like we have to do this! It really made the case for it,” said one participant. Others expressed similar feelings: the VR experience made an abstract concept real and arguably a good thing for the Central City.

Lots of ways to stay involved

If you missed Design Week, no worries …

You can still experience the Green Loop and help make it happen! We’ve got a new Green Loop website and map app, with lots of information and ways for you to engage moving forward. Learn more about the Untitled Studios exhibition, explore the loop and make comments on the map app, join Friends of the Green Loop, watch a video featuring Mayor Ted Wheeler and others, and then sign up for email updates.

Then read more coverage of the Green Loop at DWP.   

Next steps

In the next few weeks, Untitled Studios will compile all the comments and ideas they collected at DWP to share with the Green Loop team.

Meanwhile, the Planning and Sustainability Commission will vote to recommend the Central City 2035 Plan to City Council on May 23. The Green Loop is such a “Big Idea” in the CC2035 Plan that the PSC will vote separately on it that day. City Council will hold public hearings on the Recommended Draft in early August. Portlanders are invited to testify in person or in writing.

Learn more at

What’s new from the Residential Infill Project?

Project staff are developing draft code and map amendments for community review in the fall.

Since City Council approved a set of working concepts for the Residential Infill Project last December, the project team has been working with other City bureaus and local agencies to develop the draft Zoning Code and mapping amendments. Community members will get a chance to review and comment on those proposals in a few months.

Opportunities to review draft code and map concepts

Staff are planning a series of public review events this fall to share these draft ideas with the community before finalizing proposals for the Planning and Sustainability Commission’s public hearings. The updated timeline below is included in the latest project summary sheet.    


Now, let’s clear up some misunderstandings …

We know this is a controversial project and some rumors have been circulating, especially on social media sites like Nextdoor. Because we don’t respond to questions or statements on these platforms, we’ve created a series of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to address some of the misunderstandings. Here are a couple rumors the FAQs hope to dispel:

  • “The Residential Infill project is a done deal.”

The project is not over; it is in midstream. Phase I: Concept Development has been completed, and we are now in Phase II: Code and Map Amendments. Phase I was completed last December when City Council accepted the Concept Report. The concepts in the report gave staff direction to develop a formal proposal as part of Phase II, which involves developing amendments to the Zoning Code and Zoning Map for public review this fall. After the community weighs in on a draft of code and map amendments during the summer, staff will prepare a Proposed Draft for the Planning and Sustainability Commission to consider and hold public hearings in the fall. The PSC will amend the Proposed Draft based on public feedback and their deliberations, then send a Recommended Draft to City Council for a decision in 2018. See the timeline above for the steps in each phase.

  • “Council will be holding public hearings on the mapping options (this summer).”

City Council will not be holding more hearings on the conceptual boundary of the Housing Opportunity Overlay zone. When staff met with newly elected Mayor Ted Wheeler to discuss the overlay concept boundary and mapping approaches, he gave staff new direction: Rather than go back to Council, he wanted the PSC to hold hearings on a refined overlay zone boundary and forward their recommendations to Council.

The Mayor also directed staff to use the conceptual boundary on page 14 of staff’s Concept Report to Council as a starting place to begin further refinement of the boundary. To accomplish the boundary refinement, staff is working with representatives from PBOT, Tri-Met, Water, Fire, Police, BES, BDS, Metro and Housing Bureau. Potential boundary refinements will be based on infrastructure capacity, physical barriers, natural features and potential equity impacts. Project staff will share a draft boundary to Portlanders in the fall, before a proposed boundary goes to the PSC.

For More Information

Morgan Tracy, Project Manager,, 503-823-6879
Julia Gisler, Public Involvement,, 503-823-7624

For general information about the project, visit the website at


PSC News: May 23, 2017 Meeting Recap

Southwest Corridor Equitable Housing Strategy — briefing; Central City 2035 Plan — work session / recommendation


  • Southwest Corridor Equitable Housing Strategy — briefing
  • Central City 2035 Plan — work session / recommendation

Meeting files

An archive of meeting minutes and documents of all Planning and Sustainability Commission meetings are available at

For background information, see the PSC website at, call 503-823-7700 or email

Meeting playback on Channel 30 are scheduled to start the Friday following the meeting. Starting times may occur earlier for meetings over three hours long, and meetings may be shown at additional times as scheduling requires.

Channel 30 (closed-caption)
Friday at 3 p.m. | Sunday at 7:00 a.m. | Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.


The City of Portland is committed to providing meaningful access and will make reasonable accommodations, modifications, translation, interpretation or provide other services. When possible, please contact us at least three (3) business days before the meeting at 503-823-7700 or use City TTY 503-823-6868 or Oregon Relay Service 711.

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