How I Spent My Christmas Vacation: Geeking Out on the Portland Plan DocumentsJanuary 4, 2010
OK, I’m a wonk. I spent a chunk of my holiday break curled up with two three-ring binders worth of background reports – and found it fascinating.
But you don’t have to wade through thousands of pages to comprehend the issues. The project team has produced a great handbook that lays out the key issues in about 40 pages. I think this is really helpful. We used the handbook approach during the development of the Streetcar System Concept Plan and citizens told us it helped them comprehend the issues.
But I don’t want to diminish the background reports themselves. They are an amazing compilation of the key programs, systems and infrastructure that comprise the City. And they comprehensively and clearly lay out the opportunities, challenges and policy trade-offs that we’re going to have to grapple with. If you’re ready to dig in (or just graze a bit), here’s the full list:
If you’d like to read hardcopies of these, rather than download them, they’re available in your local library branch or neighborhood coalition office.
My compliments to the staff (in many bureaus) who produced these reports. I doubt that many cities have this kind of comprehensive view available.
As we move through the process, I hope to highlight issues from a number of these reports in future posts!
And these documents are not just informative, they play an official role in the Portland Plan process. Planning Commission and City Council will hold hearings on and adopt this content as the ‘existing conditions’ for the Portland Plan and Comprehensive Plan. Planning Commission will hold a series of three hearings (download the flyer PDF) starting on January 26th. Come out and tell us what YOU think. See you there.