I enjoyed the door-knocking tremendously, and found that interacting directly with people in the neighborhood gave me a better insight into the area’s culture than any amount of talking to people who live elsewhere or browsing Internet statistics ever could have. This fact seems almost too obvious to state, but I found the experience of walking between houses and speaking with the people living in them honestly eye-opening.
We recently spent three class periods watching the documentary Making Sense of Place – Portland: Quest for the Livable City. The film detailed Portland’s system of urban planning, the history of the urban growth boundary, and the function of our Metro government. We learned that the urban growth boundary was instituted with the passage of state Senate Bill 100 in 1973, and Metro, a tri-county regional government that now regulates that boundary, was established shortly afterward. We came to appreciate how unique the Portland metro area is in its approach to planning.