PSU Presentations to Ministry of Land and Resources (MLR) delegation
Land use is dynamic and people-centered. It captures the values and priorities of the citizens of a given region as it attempts to mediate between often-conflicting goals and perspectives. Dr. Ethan Seltzer, Professor and Director of the School of Urban Studies and Planning at Portland State University, lists some overarching planning principles and describes the comprehensive planning process. He explains the origins of land use planning in the Portland metro region and the state of Oregon, lists required planning elements, and details the process used in the creation of the Region 2040 plan.
Protecting productive resource lands from urban uses in accordance with state requirements has been controversial. A substantial part of protecting farm and forest resource lands is to ensure they can remain productive and economically viable into the future. R. Scott Pemble, planning manager for the Clackamas County Department of Transportation and Development, describes farm and forest zoning in the county along with successful strategies to prevent the inappropriate conversion of farm and forest lands to urban use. He emphasizes the importance of containing urban sprawl in order to preserve farm and forest lands.
One of the most successful tools in protecting rural areas from urban development and containing the cost of infrastructure investment has been the urban growth boundary. Richard Benner, an attorney with Metro and former director of the Oregon Department of Land Conservation and Development, outlines the rationale and purpose of the urban growth boundary and explains how it can be incrementally adjusted to accommodate future growth. Future growth can be effectively planned on non-resource lands where urban services can reasonably be provided. Decisions to move or amend the urban growth boundary are subject to extensive public process.