But now, even Portlanders feel that enough is enough. Here in Lake Oswego, the Creep hasn't stopped, and it may be gearing up for another boom. Portlanders and the surrounding suburban cities have a right to be frustrated and angry. We elect people to office, and then become their pawns. So many politicians are wannabe developers. They love joining the big-money guys to transform the city according to their own visions.
It's time for people in Portland, Lake Oswego and elsewhere, to elect leaders who listen, not just to their usual cliques, but to the regular people who live here and pay taxes here, and act accordingly.
Talk of 'Portland Creep' comes home
Four years ago, anti-light rail activists in Clackamas County coined the term Portland Creep to describe the high density redevelopment they feared would accompany the Portland-to-Milwaukie MAX line.
Last week, Metro President Tom Hughes said some Portlanders are now beginning to push back against Portland Creep in their own neighborhoods as the city grows.
“There are two things Oregonians hate, sprawl and density,” Hughes told hundreds of transportation planners and consultants attending the 2016 International Conference of the Association for Commuter Transportation at the downtown Hilton Hotel.
Portland City Commissioner Steve Novick, who spoke with Hughes at the Wednesday morning opening session, agreed. He relayed personal stories about how his Multnomah Village neighbors in Southwest Portland are complaining to him about the density increases the City Council believes are required to help accommodate the additional 123,000 households expected by 2035.
“A lot of people say, we like things just the way they are,” Novick said.
As Novick explained it, he believes increased density will have multiple benefits for Multnomah Village, including better transit service and the kind of full-service grocery store it now lacks, all supported by the critical mass of people that will be reached over the next 20 years. But Novick conceded that a lot of the people he talks to aren’t buying it.
Novick said to achieve the city’s climate change goals, far more people will need to rely on alternative transportation in the future. He said that by 2045, the number of residents routinely driving their own cars must be cut by more than half, from the current 57 percent to just 25 percent.
Hughes said Metro must do more to persuade people to live closer to where they work, a change he said is necessary to achieve a better jobs/housing balance.
“I don’t get it,” Hughes said of people who commute long distances — before admitting he lives in Hillsboro but works at the Metro headquarters building in inner Northeast Portland.
- I have been to many meeting where Steve Novick was present. He did not take alternative transportation.
- Tom Hughes admonition for people to live where they work is ridiculous. Central Planners live by different rules than they make for the rest of us. They just don't "get" why we don't like them.
- Novick is dismayed that his neighbors like their neighborhood just the way it is. Novick must like it too, but he probably won't move to a mid-rise apartment with scant parking - the kind he thinks will be a benefit for Multnomah Village.
- One way the COP can meet its Climate Change goals by 2045 is to change its goals to something that agrees with the way people actually live.
Who ARE these people, and how do they get elected?