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Student Research and Graduate Workshops

Above: Graduate students in the Adelante Planning workshop group worked with Hacienda CDC and community residents to create a plan for a Mercado serving Portland's Latino community. The project won an AICP national student planning award in 2012 for Application of the Planning Process. 

Graduate Workshops

A core requirement of the Master of Urban and Regional Planning (MURP) program is completion of a community-based, client-focused workshop project. Several past workshop projects have focused on strengthening opportunities for underserved neighborhoods and populations in the Portland metropolitan area:

Gresham Opportunity Framework Plan-Part 1/Part-2

The Map Gresham project was a five-month long planning process led by Camassia Community Planning (CCP) to create “opportunity maps” and an Opportunity Framework Plan for the City of Gresham, OR. Opportunity mapping is a relatively new planning method for analyzing the spatial distribution of indicators linked to opportunity and determining which populations have access to these factors.

The overarching objective of the Framework Plan is to improve equitable access to opportunities for Gresham’s neighborhoods and diverse populations. We created the plan by putting community at the center and collaborating with local organizations, technical advisors, and City staff. It includes nine goals and 25 actions related to: public involvement, housing, transportation, food access, employment, education, health & human services, parks, and safety.

Read the full report here. 

Allen Boulevard Corridor Plan

The Allen Boulevard corridor, home to diverse populations and a vibrant commercial district, is a community in transition and a community with potential. While Allen Boulevard possesses unique assets in its present state, it has seen little in the way of localized planning or City programs tailored to the area’s needs. As such, the City of Beaverton partnered with the Portland State University Master of Urban and Regional Planning program to produce a detailed corridor study and planning guide for the area. From that partnership, six graduate students formed a consulting group, InSite Planning, to produce this plan.

Read the full report here. 

PAALF People's Plan: East Portland Pilot/ Background/ Community Engagement/ Executive Summary/ Overview/ Conditions 

In collaboration with the Portland African American Leadership Forum, a group of six PSU MURP students joined efforts to support the organization's work on the People's Plan. PAALF People's Plan will frame the policy agenda, project the vision for a thriving Black community, and advance community-initiated projects that benefit Africans and African Americans living in Portland, Oregon. By viewing the community as the drivers of change, the PAALF People's Plan will serve as a powerful tool for organizing, advocacy, and implementation; empowering the Portland Black community to assert their right to actively shape the city they live in. 

The Student team worked with PAALF and community members to develop the East Portland Pilot Plan in order to gather preliminary data and determine a strategic roadmap to support ongoing community engagement and planning efforts of the PAALF People's Plan. The pilot plan focuses on the needs and prioities of Black residents who have settled in East Portland as a result of displacement from inner city neighborhoods and the search for affordable housing. Recognizing the traumatic experience of being uprooted from community and place, this pilot plan reflects the hopes of those who seek to rebuild their lives. The East Portland Pilot Plan explores the issues of some of the city's most underserved and overlooked populations and proposes a starting point for community healing and opportunities for equitable development as Portland continues to grow

Read the full report here. 

Fourth Plain Forward: Action Plan for Vancouver's Multicultural Business District Appendices

Fourth Plain Forward is an action plan for Fourth Plain's multicultural business district, created in collaboration with the City of Vancouver, Washington. Fourth Plain's business district reflects the rich diversity of its surrounding communities, but the area faces significant economic challenges. To address these issues, the action plan builds on the economic development goals outlined in the 2007 Fourth Plain Corridor Subarea Plan, and aims to improve conditions along the corridor for both businesses and residents. Broadly, Fourth Plain Forward outlines strategies and actions to grow economic security and opportunity, and maintain the area's diversity. 

Read the full report here. 

Portland Mercado 

Realizing public goals of an inclusive and vibrant society requires an advocacy approach to urban planning and economic development. Adelante Planning outlines strategies based on research and case studies to successfully implement a Mercado as an economic development and business incubation strategy for Portland’s Latino community. A Mercado is a strategic planning approach targeted toward Latino populations and other minorities, particularly in gentrifying areas within the Portland metropolitan region.

Read the full report here. 

Harvesting Opportunity: A Strategic Vision for Farmworker Housing and Microenterprise in Washington County

Farmworkers across Washington County face stagnant and often declining incomes, limited employment opportunities, and a shortage of affordable, quality housing. In this six-month workshop project, Tierra Planning explored the connection between quality affordable housing and economic development opportunities for farmworkers in Washington County.  TSUSP graduate students worked with stakeholders, regulators, landowners and farmworkers to identify barriers, opportunities, and alternatives. Following extensive research, outreach, and alternatives analysis, the final product included a strategic vision and also offered both general recommendations and recommendations to Washington County officials.  A primary objective of the project is to encourage discourse among local farmers, housing developers, and policy makers in order to provide alternative models for integrated farmworker housing and economic development. Additionally, this project also highlights the important connection between the growing local food movement and workers who harvest local food to broaden support for the social aspects of sustainability.

Read the full report here. 

Humboldt Community Action Plan

Mosaic Planning worked to develop an action plan that will enable the community to better address their concerns.  Within Portland, the Humboldt neighborhood is one of the most diverse and rapidly changing areas—constantly challenging the neighborhood association's efforts to reach a diverse population of residents. Through concerted outreach, interviews, and workshops, Mosaic Planning has identified a series of goals the neighborhood hopes to achieve. By thoroughly researching methods to achieve these goals, the group provided a series of action items to the community for implementation by residents. This plan will help them address neighborhood issues, identify city and local resources, and provide ways to build a stronger community within Humboldt.

Read the full report here


Student Profiles

For more information on MURP, MUS, and Ph.D students’ research projects, work experience, and professional interests, visit the student profiles page.