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John Tomlinson

Neil Goldschmidt always gets the credit for the '72 Downtown Plan, but he was only a political figurehead for many things that came together in the late 60's and early 70's in Portland. I was enrolled at PSU as a Geography major during that time frame, and the PSU Geography dept was a virtual urban thinktank in those days about concepts such as combined metropolitan governments (such as London's regional government, etc). The City Planning Department was also very active in the conceptual process to change Portland's urban planning structure, as was the Oregon Historical Society, who published my Bird's-Eye View map of downtown Portland in 1972. The desire to point Portland in a new direction was just a part of all sorts of energetic movements emerging in the late 60's, and it's a shame that all we hear currently are accolades for Neil Goldschmidt, who was just a second-hander who opportunistically took credit for the work of many people.

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