What will Portland look like as it continues to grow in population? How do we maintain our reputation as a model for sustainable development, craft the right balance between a host of different competing interests and values, and add thousands of new residents without sacrificing what makes our city successful? How many questions will be in this paragraph?
For the third installment of the bi-monthly discussion series "Designs On Portland" at Design Within Reach in the Pearl, I will be discussing these ideas with Arun Jain, Chief Urban Designer for the City of Portland. Jain didn't lay out the street grid or make Portland a bike and green-friendly city, but with his help we can keep it that way. Maybe we can even improve a thing or two (he said half facetiously).
Jain joined the City of Portland Bureau of Planning as its first Chief Urban Designer in January 2003. In this role he oversees civic and design quality issues throughout the city. In this role he advises Portland's mayor and the city on issues surrounding the physical quality of the community. A frequent member of several mayoral task forces and advisory committees, Jain's team instigates, creates and directs visions, ideas and solutions to ensure good urban design and an appealing, sustainable public environment in Portland.
With over 25 years of experience as an urban designer in practice and academia, Jain holds two masters degrees from the University of Pennsylvania’s Urban Design Program. He taught for over 10 years at the University of California Berkeley and remains an invited critic by universities around the world. Jain is also an internationally invited speaker and mentor on urban design and development issues. Professionally and philosophically, he seeks better balances between environmental and economic sustainability.
"Designs on Portland: The Ever-Growing City" will be held this Wednesday, May 21, 6-8pm at DWR's Portland Studio, 1200 N.W. Everett. Admission is free and refreshments will be served. Also, we hope to have some minor audio and timing glitches taken care of, and I will set a goal of not interrupting quite as often. (Guess I've been watching too much Charlie Rose.)