Trying to Protect Farms and Forests, But Saving Open Space

A land use law passed in Oregon in the 1970s that was meant to protect farmland and forests hasn't really protected either, according to a new report.

But the law did seem to have an impact on the protection of open space, according to this column from The Idaho Statesman.

"The law not only protected open space but also water quality and scenic views that added value for society across the board, the study showed. But it also seems to show that beyond laws that simply prohibit activities, there are limits to the effectiveness of restrictions for land-use management.

The report cited a study that found in Hood River County, there were no significant differences in either resource use or land conversion between areas where higher numbers of dwellings were approved on resource lands, and those where fewer numbers of dwellings were approved. The large minimum lot sizes may inadvertently encourage the growth of hobby farming, potentially at the expense of commercial farming."

Full Story: Rocky Barker: Oregon saved open space, not farms


building block set

NEW! Build the world you want to see

Irresistible block set for adults when placed on a coffee table or desk, and great fun for kids.
Red necktie with map of Boston

For dads and grads: tie one on to celebrate your city!

Choose from over 20 styles imprinted with detailed city or transit maps.
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $16.95 a month
Book cover of Where Things Are from Near to Far

Where Things Are From Near to Far

This engaging children's book about planning illustrates that "every building has its place."