Portland, Oregon, has always been considered a forward-thinking city chock-full of people who want to embrace sustainability and improve their community. In 2010, Oregon became the home of the first official “living building,” which requires a building to “produce all of its own energy and manage all of its own water on site, as well use nontoxic, locally-sourced materials.”
Unique building initiatives such as this have created special opportunities for contractors to get active with projects that truly aim to benefit society and help the overall community grow. In other words, Portland has become somewhat of a contractor’s paradise for those in the profession who are looking to be challenged by one-of-a-kind projects.
In this two-part series, a Portland construction attorney from Cotney Construction Law will discuss one of Portland’s most widespread community improvement initiatives, Smart City PDX, a program that aims to eliminate the injustices that have plagued people of color and those with disabilities in the City of Roses through data-driven development.
Smart City PDX Principles
Contractors who are interested in participating in Smart City PDX must be familiar with the guiding principles of the program. These include:
- Engaging with the community to identify their needs in order to make well-informed decisions about the types of projects that will have the greatest benefit.
- Identifying and confronting issues of disparity in communities of every ilk.
- Accelerate timelines for projects that have quantifiable and substantial benefits on the community at large.
- Continuously evaluating and altering projects to provide the most benefit for communities while acknowledging that a “one-size-fits-all” approach will only hinder the success of communities dealing with inequities.
- Liberate public data and increase accessibility so other developers can embrace Portland’s innovative design solutions.
- Partner with academia, non-profit organizations, national consortiums, other agencies, and private sector companies to better utilize resources for preferable outcomes.
Smart City PDX Goals and Priorities
The goal of Smart City PDX is to “address inequities and disparities using data and investing in technology-driven projects that improve people’s lives.” For contractors in the Portland area, Smart City PDX presents a unique opportunity to greatly boost their reputation and showcase their community involvement while populating their portfolio with truly innovative projects. Smart City PDX’s goals include:
- Economic prosperity
- Public safety
- Human health
- Environmental health
To learn more about Smart City PDX, including the process and criteria for qualification, read part two.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.