While we are encouraged that 2010 has started off with a bang, it will continue to require efficiencies in our work, creative partnerships and innovation. Through professional development and work with our clients, we continue to advance and refine our integrated practice areas of planning, community engagement and sustainability. We have had the good fortune to continue to be able to stretch our professional wings in broadening our creative and strategic partnerships in energy, climate change, urban design, asset management, community engagement, social media, strategic planning and process facilitation.
We hope to have the chance to work with you this year. Please continue reading for a sample of what we are up to!
~ Kirstin Greene, Managing Principal
Welcome Ric Stephens!
We are pleased to welcome planner and urban designer Ric Stephens to COC. Ric’s practice on local and national levels helps us stay on the cutting edge of public engagement and community building. In addition to his work in Chehalem, Urban Reserves projects, the Dominican Republic and Haiti recovery planning, Ric is closely involved with community initiatives such as the recent urban design charrette in Beaverton. The Oregonian gave impressive coverage to this event. It attracted elected officials, experienced urban design and planning professionals, and agency staff to work with 70 high school students to design attributes and uses for the long neglected Westgate Theater site.
Building on his extensive expertise creating meaningful and memorable communities, Ric continues to inspire us all with his ideas and creativity in youth engagement, innovative community planning and urban design.
Climate Action Planning
As part of our 2010 commitment to continuing work on helping solve our most challenging problems, COC hosted a brown bag on Climate Action Planning on January 7. Twenty committed professionals doing work in this field enjoyed a presentation by former COC planner Damian Pitt, PhD, on his recent research on climate action planning at Virginia Tech. The discussion that followed was intense and enlightening. We were fortunate in 2009 to work on various aspects of climate change and greenhouse gas reduction strategies, and look forward to a continued focus in this area in 2010. Let us know if you would like to be apprised of our next gathering on this or related topics. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In Oregon City, we are helping the community decide how to maintain and enhance the iconic Carnegie Center, a community asset that has been vacant for more than a year.
For the Office of Portland Mayor Sam Adams, we are facilitating meetings of a group of veterans for their perspective on how to revitalize and reuse the historic Memorial Coliseum.
In Rainier, COC assisted business owners, elected and appointed officials, railroad and ODOT representatives to reach consensus on a vision for A Street that will guide public investments to attract redevelopment along the city’s main downtown thoroughfare.
In Clackamas County, we are wrapping up an update to the County’s economic landscape project. The strategy will help decision makers and the business community guide investment, policy and regulatory decisions to maximize the benefits from both public finance and land use decisions. Also in Clackamas County, we are facilitating Lake Oswego’s review of its sensitive lands ordinance to ensure compliance with regulatory standards, increase flexibility for property owners and simplify the permit process.
Internationally, we are initiating a new project to develop an eco-city master plan for Langfang, China, near Beijing. COC is part of a team that includes the Woo Group, HOK Hong Kong, CW Group of San Francisco and others selected to develop a master plan to add to and redevelop an existing city of four million people. The plan will focus on all aspects of urban development and redevelopment. Our firm will focus on the public policies necessary to implement and advance the eco-city vision and master plan.
Continuing our precedent-setting work in Asia through Team Oregon, we have completed work with Origin International on an Eco-City Plan for the City of Taipei, Taiwan. See Net Green News’ coverage of this planning effort. Bob Wise’s presentation on this groundbreaking initiative given to the Natural Step of Oregon and other organizations is available here.
Sustainability Plans Roll On
Our 2008-2009 sustainability plans in Corvallis, Palm Springs, Clackamas County and Taiwan continue to gather momentum. In Corvallis, volunteers created action teams to implement top community-based recommendations in the areas of transportation, energy, food, land use, natural areas, waste prevention and water. The Coalition is comprised of more than 130 community groups. COC designed and facilitated meetings with over 600 participants at three key points during the planning process.
Individuals at COC remain personally committed to community involvement and participation. We volunteer our time to the Oregon Environmental Council, Urban Land Institute, Oregon Chapter of the American Planning Association, Hands On Greater Portland, International Society of Japanese Gardens, Three Rivers Conservancy and others. Karen Beal with Hands on Greater Portland had this to say about COC’s Alisha Dishaw:
“…This is exactly the kind of experience that we hope for on MLK Weekend of Service. I am grateful that you stepped up as you always do. Being a good leader is all about relationship and inspiration and you’ve accomplished both with intention and grace.”
~ Karen Beal, PhD, Hands On Greater Portland
- Civic Engagement and Land Use Framing Paper, Intermountain West Funder Network
- Floodplain Zoning Ordinance Update, City of Stanfield
- Stafford Triangle Infrastructure Cost Inventory and Analysis, Clackamas County Business Alliance
- Salem-Keizer Regional Economic Opportunities Analysis, Mid-Willamette Valley Council of Governments
- Sustainability Planning Assistance, Metro
- Eco-City Master Plan, Langfang, China
- Listening Sessions, Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board
- Marine Reserves, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
- Memorial Coliseum Veterans Focus Group, Portland Development Commission and Portland Mayor’s Office
- Multnomah County Initiative Food Summit, Multnomah County
- Oregon Jobs and Transportation Act, Section 18 Implementation Project, Oregon Consensus and Oregon Department of Transportation
- Board Facilitation, Lewis & Clark College
- Planning and Community Engagement, City of Damascus
- Junction City Transportation System Plan Update, Oregon Department of Transportation
- Complete Communities Healthy Communities Implementation, Clackamas County
China, Climate Change, Land Use Planning, Planning, Public Involvement, Sustainability, Taiwan