ENB-4.19 - Green Streets Policy and Green Streets Cross-Bureau Phase 2 Report

Binding City Policies (BCP)
Policy number
Binding City Policy

WHEREAS, 60 to 70 % of Portland stormwater is attributable to paved streets and runoff directed from private property and concentrated in the public right of way; and
WHEREAS, Green Streets (streets designed with landscape areas that capture, filter and allow for infiltration of stormwater runoff) are recognized as an effective way to help manage stormwater volume and water quality; and
WHEREAS, 60 million gallons of stormwater will need to be removed from the Combined Sewer System annually by 2011, through implementation of sustainable projects such as Green Streets; and
WHEREAS, the Portland Watershed Management Plan, endorsed by Resolution No. 36384 on March 6, 2006 by City Council (ENN-8.02, Actions for Watershed Health, 2005 Portland Watershed Management Plan Implementation), which implements the Portland Clean River Plan (published in 2000) includes a stormwater management strategy that recommends actions such as construction of green street facilities to protect and improve watershed conditions; and
WHEREAS, the City is required by state and federal government, through its Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit and its Underground Injection Control (UIC) Permit, to reduce stormwater pollution, protect groundwater, and develop and manage programs that respond to water quality requirements; and
WHEREAS, a broad range of federal, state, tribal, and regional policies, programs and regulations affect how the City manages stormwater, including but not limited to:
  • Federal programs that address water quality, environmental cleanup, sewage overflows, flood management, and endangered species;
  • State of Oregon programs that address water quality, wastewater discharge, watershed planning, environmental cleanup, habitat conservation, and salmon recovery;
  • Native American tribal programs that address salmon recovery, water quality, and cultural resources;
  • Metro’s programs that address transportation, greenspace, and natural resource protection and restoration; and
WHEREAS, Metro proposes onsite infiltration of stormwater for transportation facilities in Title 3 of the Urban Growth Management Functional Plan (Water Quality, Flood Management, and Fish and Wildlife Conservation), which was adopted by the Metro Council by Ordinance No. 96-647C, and amended by Ordinance No. 97-691C, prior to being codified as Metro Code Chapter 3.07 by Ordinance No. 97-715B; and
WHEREAS, the City’s Stormwater Management Manual (September 2004 or update) ranks onsite infiltration of stormwater with a surface infiltration facility at the top of the stormwater destination/disposal hierarchy, where soil conditions allow; and
WHEREAS, a policy clarifying responsibilities for maintaining green street facilities was developed and adopted as part of the City Green Streets Cross-Bureau Team’s Phase 1 work; and
WHEREAS, the Bureau of Environmental Services conducts ongoing evaluation and monitoring of green street facilities to assess their effectiveness; and
WHEREAS, the City’s Transportation System Plan (adopted by City Council in 2002 as Ordinance No. 177028, and updated in 2004 by Ordinance No. 178815 and Ordinance No. 178826) supports a transportation system that makes it more convenient for people to walk and bicycle, and to drive less to meet their daily needs while sustaining the City’s economic and environmental health; and
WHEREAS, the City’s Office of Transportation and Cross-Bureau Task Force in their 2003 Sustainable Infrastructure Committee Streetscape Report identified as a high priority the institutionalization of design standards that allow for stormwater treatment and infiltration, when economically and technically appropriate in all infrastructure projects located in the right of way.  These needs can be partially met through green street facilities; and
WHEREAS, City Council and the Portland Development Commission have adopted Green Building Policies which support incorporating sustainable and green building practices in all projects with specific requirements for City-owned buildings and projects receiving public funding or financial incentives; and
WHEREAS, the Portland Development Commission, through its redevelopment efforts in the City’s urban renewal areas, is committed to partnering with City Bureaus to incorporate Green Street design principles in new streetscape projects wherever feasible, and the implementation of Green Streets in public infrastructure (such as the Central Gateway planning effort and other areas as they become available) and in private development supported with Commission resources; and
WHEREAS, the City’s Comprehensive Plan calls on the City to:
  • Protect and manage natural resources, including stream flow, water levels, and groundwater, and maintain and improve the quality of State water resources through design of stormwater drainage facilities (Goal 8);
  • Implement a full range of floodplain management measures (Goal 8);
  • Conserve linear features (e.g., drainageways, parkways) that have value as wildlife corridors and connectors between habitat areas (Goal 8);
  • Coordinate land use planning and capital improvements to ensure the most efficient use of the City’s stormwater run-off facilities (Goal 8);
  • Plan and develop an efficient arrangement of public facilities and services, including those related to stormwater management (Goal 11);
  • Plan, design and develop transportation projects in efficient, innovative, and environmentally responsible ways that consider and minimize impacts on the natural environment (Goal 11);
  • Integrate master planning for stormwater management to achieve adequate drainage and minimize pollution and erosion problems (Goal 11);
  • Design new development to enhance the natural environment that is so much a part of Portland’s character (Goal 12);
  • Enhance Portland as a livable city by building quality private developments and public improvements for future generations (Goal 12); and
WHEREAS, the City is required by City Policy ENN-3.01- Sustainable City Principles, to find more sustainable and cost effective approaches that protect the quality of air, water, land and other natural resources; and
WHEREAS, Portland Parks and Recreation encourages, supports, and contributes to the development of greenways and urban treescapes that directly enhance the City’s environment and residents’ quality of life; and
WHEREAS, the City of Portland Green Streets Cross-Bureau Team recommends that City Council adopt the Green Streets Policy that is provided in Exhibit A and the Green Streets Cross-Bureau Phase 2 Report that is provided in Exhibit B .
WHEREAS, the above are supported by the findings that are provided in the Green Streets Policy (Exhibit A ).

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the City Council accepts and endorses the attached Green Streets Policy (Exhibit A) and Green Streets Cross-Bureau Phase 2 Report (Exhibit B ) to promote and incorporate use of Green Streets to manage stormwater, enhance neighborhood livability, improve the function of the right of way, provide habitat corridors, and promote connectivity between Portland neighborhoods.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED City Council directs City Bureaus and agencies to cooperatively plan and implement Green Streets as an integral part of the City’s maintenance, installation, and improvement programs for its infrastructure located in the public right of way, and to integrate the Green Street Policy into the City’s Comprehensive Plan, Transportation System Plan, and Citywide Systems Plan.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that this resolution and attached Green Streets Policy are binding City policy.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Office of Management and Finance, shall convene a task force composed of representatives of the Bureau of Environmental Services, Portland Office of Transportation and Portland Water Bureau to conduct an analysis of existing funding, and make recommendations for new sources of funding for

Green Street

project implementation and maintenance.

Resolution No. 36500, adopted by City Council April 18, 2007.

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