Monday, June 8, 2009

Portland Book Time

So, I have started reading a book called The Portland Edge: Challenges And Successes In Growing Communities. So far it has been a great read. It looks at the successes and challenges in Portland, Oregon on livability and sustainability. The Metro Portland area has a strong history of regional planning, and the book examines this in some detail. I would recommend that you read this book if you want a fair account of the region's past, present, and future. It also covers some of the more controversial topics like affordable housing and the region’s quasi-government Portland Development Commission. One of the interesting figures in the book was something called the Ladder of Citizen Participation. You can read more about it, but it got me thinking about what level of citizen participation we have in the Metro Vancouver region. I personally believe that we are somewhere in the “degree of tokenism” levels. Some agencies are better than other.

I would say that the Ministry of Transportation, for example, would be at the Informing level, while TransLink is at the Consultation level… Anyway, read the book!

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