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The Portland Edge: Challenges And Successes In Growing Communities [Paperback]

Connie P. Ozawa , Jennifer Dill , Alan Yeakley , Mattew Witt , Steven Reed Johnson , Gerald Sussman , J.R. Estes , Chet Orloff , Carl Abbott , Deborah Howe , Nancy Chapman , Hollie Lund , Sy Adler , John Provo , Karen Gibson , Tracy Prince , Leslie Good , Ethan Seltzer , Heike Mayer
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

October 5, 2004 1559636955 978-1559636957 3rd

Portland, Oregon, is often cited as one of the most livable cities in the United States and a model for "smart growth." At the same time, critics deride it as a victim of heavy-handed planning and point to its skyrocketing housing costs as a clear sign of good intentions gone awry. Which side is right? Does Portland deserve the accolades it has received, or has hype overshadowed the real story?

In The Portland Edge, leading urban scholars who have lived in and studied the region present a balanced look at Portland today, explaining current conditions in the context of the people and institutions that have been instrumental in shaping it. Contributors provide empirical data as well as critical insights and analyses, clarifying the ways in which policy and planning have made a difference in the Portland metropolitan region.

Because of its iconic status and innovative approach to growth, Portland is an important case study for anyone concerned with land use and community development in the twenty-first century. The Portland Edge offers useful background and a vital overview of region, allowing others to draw lessons from its experience.

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The Portland Edge: Challenges And Successes In Growing Communities + Slow Democracy: Rediscovering Community, Bringing Decision Making Back Home
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Editorial Reviews


"With numerous photos, tables and figures, The Portland Edge is a text for urban livability."
(The Oregonian)

"Whether Portland is a model for Smart Growth and sustainability or is failing to address challenges of urban sprawl and affordable housing is one of the debates at the heart of this book, which examines how Portland's urban system and planning approaches actually work—an exploration applicable to other U.S. metropolitan areas."
(Landscape Architecture Magazine)
--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

CONNIE P. OZAWA is professor in the department of urban studies and planning at Portland State University.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Island Press; 3rd edition (October 5, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1559636955
  • ISBN-13: 978-1559636957
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,199,477 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The successes and challenges in Portland communities November 19, 2006
By Yan
I am a professor of City and Regional Planning and I found this book a much-needed addition to the urban-planning literature. The book is written at a level appropriate for a wide range of audiences including planning students, policy makers, politicians, urban planners, and community activists. The comprehensiveness of the work provides a much-needed explanation for students yearning for a broader understanding of how an ensemble of urban elements can help American cities accommodate growth while sustaining a sense of community for their dwellers.

What is unique about Portland's current land-use system? If planning is so popular, how does one explain the recent backlash? Where would be the balance between regulatory rules and other possibilities? These are examples of questions asked by The Portland Edge (edited by Connie Ozawa), written by a team of academics at Portland State University's School of Urban Studies and Planning. The thirteen chapters of the edited book are organized in four sections. The first section presents the demographic, economic, and civic character of the Portland region by presenting data on key dimensions of economy, equity, and environment. The second section traces Portland's growth-management policies and details the institutional structures by describing a range of the roles of regional and city bodies, such as Metro (the elected regional planning authority), the Portland Development Commission, citizen-involvement mechanisms, and neighborhood associations. The third section unveils Portland's social structures that allow people to create collective visions of community and offers examples of how the underrepresented groups and the citizen advocates work to voice themselves.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Very useful overview February 7, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The Portland Edge provides a very useful overview of developments in the Portland area, combining the responses of those with different sets of concerns. It helped me a good deal in understanding what has gone on there over in recent years, and in preparing my current piece on Incoporating Economics Into Urban Planning.

Hugh Schwartz, author of a book on Curitiba, Brazil
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