The Story of Portland
A LONG TIME AGO, SOMETHING SPECIAL HAPPENED HERE IN PORTLAND: OUR COMPANIES STARTED WORKING TOGETHER TO BUILD BETTER CITIES.
Like most cities, Portland wasn’t always so green. The city was once called “Stumptown,” a reminder that Portland sits in a valley that was covered in lush, dense forest. We polluted our rivers and air, and our quality of life suffered. Over the past 40 years, we’ve worked hard to go from grey to green. Our public leadership set a progressive policy framework on land use, energy, waste, and water management. We used public-private partnership models that enabled us to share the risk in fostering development in the city. We learned how to save money and resources— and are now one of the few cities in the world that has improved both its economy and environment.
Portland’s culture of craft, cooperation, and invention is its own singular competitive advantage. Its unique ecosystem of public, private, and nonprofit sectors partner to solve next generation building and urban growth challenges. The result is a close-knit group of agencies and companies that know each other’s capabilities and work together to deliver a product that meets the client’s needs without compromising the environment. Today, we export our best ideas, products and services to other cities around the world.
The Portland Development Commission convenes the We Build Green Cities initiative on behalf of the City of Portland and local industry. As the city’s urban and economic development agency, PDC focuses on investing in job creation, innovation, and economic opportunities to make Portland one of the world’s most desirable and equitable cities. It has been a driving force in Portland’s reputation for vibrancy and livability.