Adapting to Change (2023 updates)
Since we adopted Moving to Our Future in 2019, we have experienced unprecedented challenges. Less than 12 months after we adopted this plan, the Covid-19 pandemic forced us to shift our working conditions, mobilize to support safe and healthy travel and commerce in our streets, and brace for uncertain public health, social and economic ramifications that are still unfolding. As 2020 continued, our community, country and global society spoke out against injustice and reckoned with systemic racism following the killing of George Floyd. And in 2021 and 2022, we experienced first-hand the devastating toll of climate change, living through weeks of choking wildfire smoke, dangerous ice conditions and multiple scorching heat waves.
One of PBOT's biggest challenges is finding new sources of money and more sustainable funding model to meet our goals. Currently, PBOT's budget is overly reliant on income from fossil fuel taxes and parking, things that have been in sharp decline because of the pandemic, but also due to the increased emphasis on rising fuel efficiency and other factors. Developing this new model is the key to PBOT's ability to carry its vision for Portland forward.
Despite these challenges and changes facing our city, the central vision of the Strategic Plan still resonates. These events have brought filling critical needs into sharper focus, and the core pillars of creating safer streets, enhancing mobility, prudent asset management, pursuing racial equity, addressing structural racism and reducing carbon emissions. To enable us to forge ahead with this work and achieve the outcomes we seek, leadership extended the timeline of the strategic plan, Moving to Our Future from three to five years (concluding in 2024). This extension allows us to reexamine the plan’s content in light of current realities.
In the following chapters, look out for “WHAT’S NEW” sections, summarizing updates and revisions made over the last year. These updates include:
- Additional information about PBOT’s commitment to advance equity and address structural racism and a framework all staff can use to apply justice principles to their work
- The definition of performance outcomes and measures within our three goal chapters so we can hold ourselves accountable and track our progress
- Revised lists of objectives and initiatives for each goal, reflecting current priorities and resource realities
PBOT's three core goals
- SAFETY: Make Portland streets safe for everyone
- MOVING PEOPLE AND GOODS: Provide transportation options for a growing city
- ASSET MANAGEMENT: Deliver smart investments to maintain our transportation system
Delivering on these goals means saving lives by protecting Portlanders as they walk, bike, roll, and drive. It means saving time by offering easy, reliable options to get where we need to go. It means saving money by investing in our roads efficiently.
As we work towards these goals, we also want to make sure that our efforts contribute to a Portland that is more equitable and that has a smaller carbon footprint. This is why we will ask ourselves these two fundamental questions as we pursue each goal:
- Will it advance equity and address structural racism?
- Will it reduce carbon emissions?
We have a lot of work to do to meet the expectations this city has for its transportation system.
Fortunately, PBOT has an extremely talented and committed staff. Part of the success of Moving to Our Future will depend on providing PBOT’s people with the tools they need to deliver this plan’s goals. Specifically, this means investing in our people at all levels of the bureau and fostering a positive, mission- driven workplace. We’re dedicated to making PBOT an employer of choice and recruiting and cultivating superior talent to deliver our ambitious strategy.
We also need Portlanders to be engaged with this plan. Whether you are a veteran of transportation policy or are getting involved for the first time, please share your ideas about how we can reach our goals together. Your input is a critical part of this plan’s success. Together we will move Portland toward a safer, more accessible and more equitable future.
What we stand for
We want a safe, reliable, equitable, and affordable transportation system that supports Portland’s prosperity with a high quality of life, an inclusive and connected community, and a low-carbon footprint.
We work with our community to shape a livable city together. We plan, build, manage, and maintain an effective and safe transportation system that provides people and businesses the access and mobility they need and deserve. We keep Portland moving.
Safety first: we make the safety of all Portlanders, including our workforce, our highest priority.
Equitable: we promote equitable outcomes bureau-wide, and deliver equitable and accessible services for all Portlanders.
Respectful: we value and support our workforce.
Innovative: we foster innovation to deliver forward-thinking transportation solutions.
Open: we embrace and cultivate a welcoming and accessible culture.
Inclusive: we embrace and cultivate a welcoming and accessible culture.