Planners talk a lot about Portland. This isn't surprising, given Portland's iconic status as the planners' nirvana – the place where planners' crazy ideas get implemented and actually work and make everybody happy. But there's another reason to talk about Portland: It is a place where a lot of things California planners talk about are ground-tested and, most of the time, actually work.
This doesn't mean that every city in California should slavishly follow Portland's example. It's never a good idea to simply point to another city and say, We should just copy them. But it is worth thinking about why Portland does things – and does them successfully – that a lot of other cities can't seem to do.
After a visit to Portland, Bill Fulton concludes there are six important lessons to learn from Portland. The important thing is to apply the lessons to your own town, and not try to recreate Portland.
Thanks to Bill Fulton