Candidates Forum






Updated July 30Read how Dan Ryan and Loretta Smith respond to equity, livability, and emergency preparedness issues as they relate to the city’s built environment in this special candidate forum for  Portland City Commissioner Position 2. 


Portland’s primary election takes place on May 19, 2020. We wanted to provide an opportunity to learn more from the candidates about their views on livability, sustainability, economic, and emergency preparedness issues as they relate to the city’s built environment. We invited all candidates for Mayor and the three City Commissioner positions to participate in an online forum by answering some questions. We received responses from 13 candidates. We’d like to thank the candidates who participated in this Q&A.

Candidate answers are given in full on the linked pages.

Question 1

Portland’s history and distinctive architectural character are a source of pride for locals and the most common reason tourists come to visit here. In 2017, Travel Oregon’s survey revealed that 38% of our visitors came here to visit historic places, and in 2012, Travel and Leisure ranked Portland 9th among major US cities for the appeal to tourists for its interesting neighborhoods.

Question 2

It is widely known that Portland is at a high risk for a major earthquake that in particular could impact thousands of older and historic buildings throughout the city. Over 6,000 housing units are unreinforced masonry buildings, which are prone to collapse, and many of Portland’s 145,000 single-family residences have not been retrofitted with foundation tie-downs to prevent collapse.

Question 3

Portland has struggled to find a way to increase affordable housing and density in a way that doesn’t displace large numbers of lower-income families, destroy older affordable homes to create new, more expensive units, and negatively impact our city’s environmental footprint.

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