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Planning and Sustainability

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Online Map App and Citywide Systems Plan released

This year some Portlanders might take advantage of an online mapping tool that allows neighbors to say whether or not they will hand out Halloween treats. A new feature provided by the social media platform for neighborhoods and their associations,, the “Halloween Treat Map” takes trick-or-treating to a new level of community awareness.

BPS shared its own fall treat this month when the Comprehensive Plan Update team released the Working Draft Part 2 , featuring a new online Map App  with commenting and sharing functions.

The Map App is an interactive series of maps showing the geography and location of various policy proposals. Visitors to the Map App can view a variety of maps, overlay multiple map layers, see areas of concern or change, make comments and view comments from others.

For example, at a meeting in mid-October of Comprehensive Plan Policy Expert Group (PEG) members where the Map App was unveiled, participants used the tool to help answer questions about new town centers in East Portland and Southwest. With the Map App, they were able to see how transit and infrastructure improvements in East Portland need to be coordinated, and cautioned against putting all the right things in an area (sewer, parks, sidewalks, etc.) without providing access to transit. For Southwest, they were able to confirm with the demographic map layer that many residents are aging in place and recommended providing services that address their changing needs.

A new Urban Design Framework is also visible in the Map App and shows Portland’s future proposed physical form. The draft framework focuses growth in neighborhood centers and along travel corridors, identifies key transportation connections, and fosters a system of habitat corridors — all while being sensitive to the unique geographies and characteristics of different parts of the city.   

The Map App is designed to solicit answers to questions, such as:

  • Where should we prioritize housing and development to support population growth?
  • Where should development be leveraged to provide more public services?
  • How can the City improve and support relationships between institutions that are experiencing growth (like campuses and hospitals) and surrounding neighborhoods?
  • Where should development be limited to reduce environmental risks and make it easier to manage stormwater?
  • Which areas of the city need greater connections to nature, or better bike and pedestrian connections to services?

Part 2 of the Comprehensive Plan Update also includes the Citywide Systems Plan (CSP), a 20-year coordinated infrastructure plan that updates the City of Portland’s 1989 Public Facilities Plan.

Public Outreach

Staff have been sharing the Map App and the CSP with the community through information and brownbag sessions. But to get at more locally specific issues, the District Liaisons and other staff members will be holding Mapping Conversations in East, West and North Portland in November, where they will be using the Map App.

“This is really the most transparent we can be,” said Marty Stockton, community outreach coordinator. “Giving the community the same information, the same overload of information we struggle with, and saying, ‘This is your story too. You can work with it and interact with it as well.’”

Mapping Conversation Locations, Dates, Times and Issue Overview


Sunday, November 3

1 – 4 p.m.

Midland Library

805 SE 122nd Avenue 

Conversation to cover proposed town centers and dispersed industrial lands.


Saturday, November 16

9 a.m. – noon

Multnomah Arts Center

7688 SW Capitol Hwy [Google map link]

Conversation to cover proposed town centers and where growth is appropriate given infrastructure constraints.


Wednesday, November 20

6:30 – 9 p.m.

University of Portland

Chiles Center, Hall of Fame Room

6605 N Portsmouth

Conversation to cover proposed centers and potential key land use changes.

Please see the Comprehensive Plan Update calendar  for additional opportunities to participate. Or call your District Liaison for more details


Recruiting new CIC members

Since its inception, public involvement for the Comprehensive Plan Update (CPU) has been guided, monitored and evaluated by an advisory committee of dedicated community members. Convened during the early days of the Portland Plan, the Community Involvement Committee (CIC) is in need of new members, particularly youth, older adults and people of color.

“The Community Involvement Committee is Portland being Portland,” said CIC member Peter Stark, a local architect. “No other metropolitan city would spend as much effort working directly with its community members and businesses to ensure they have a voice in planning their own future. We are not a watchdog committee; we collaborate directly with city staff, creating effective positive changes.”

The CIC reviews and provides input on the public involvement efforts for the Comprehensive Plan Update. This advisory committee also makes recommendations to project staff and to the Portland Planning and Sustainability Commission (PSC) to ensure outreach efforts for the plan are as inclusive and effective as possible. Learn more about the committee and application process.

Applications will be accepted through Friday, November 1, 2013. Final consideration and appointments will be made by the Mayor and approved by City Council by November 2013.