Civic engagement at its finest: Portland Plan Workshop II

11May10

Tonight I attended the Portland Plan Workshop: Phase II. The goal of the workshop was to bring communities around Portland together to plan for the next 25 years. Phase II of the Portland Plan focused on setting direction and answering the question: where do we want to go?

Workshop participants were divided into nine discussion groups based on their interest: transportation, technology and access; neighborhoods and housing; design, planning and public spaces; education and skill development; human health, food and public safety; equity, quality of life and civic engagement; sustainability and natural environment; and arts, culture and innovation.

Mayor, Sam Adams, facilitated the workshop and stressed on the importance of equity. “We can’t move forward without equity,” said Adams. Subgroup discussions about equity varied from increasing availability and affordability of healthy food to focusing outreach to demographic groups rather than geographic groups. Group discussions concerning equity agreed upon one necessity: listen to the community. And this, my friends, is what this workshop was all about: letting your voice be heard through civic engagement.

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