Resilient Portland

What happens when The Big One hits Portland? 

With the Institute for Sustainable Solutions as convener, eight Portland city agencies are working together to develop a unified resiliency plan to better respond to community needs should a major disaster hit—including a 9.0 earthquake or 500-year flood.

Since June 2017, the Resilient Infrastructure Planning Exercise (RIPE) team has been meeting to identify the city’s critical infrastructure—from roads to hospitals to water lines. The team’s goal? To understand the interdependencies between different infrastructure systems and develop priorities for getting infrastructure assets back online as soon as possible following a disaster. 

A unified resiliency plan will both better prepare the city for potential large-scale disasters and make Portland a more livable, sustainable city in the meantime.

Participants include staff from the following Portland bureaus: Environmental Services, Water, Transportation, Emergency Management, Parks and Recreation, Management and Finance, Planning and Sustainability, and Fire and Rescue.

The project is part of the Global Consortium for Sustainable Outcomes’ CapaCity Project—which is tapping five universities worldwide to partner with local governments and explore the role of universities in providing implementation capacity to city agencies. In addition to Portland, the project includes universities and cities in Arizona, Mexico, and Germany. 

The RIPE team is continuing their work in support of a Disaster Resilience and Recovery Action Group (DRRAG) in the City of Portland. They are focused on continuing education, collaboration, and expanding resources for resilient infrastructure and recovery planning in the City of Portland.

Read the June 2018 Resilient Infrastructure Planning Exercise report. (PDF)


Beth Gilden | Project Manager at the Institute for Sustainable Solutions |

Liliana Caughman | Graduate Student Research Assistant at the Institute for Sustainable Solutions |