Arts, Culture and Innovation - Printable Version - April 20, 2010 - 0 Comments
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Arts, Culture and Innovation

Why is this important?

Arts and cultural activities introduce people to new ideas, ways to communicate and modes of thinking. Exposure to these things can generate creative thoughts in working and daily life. Cultural life plays a key role in creating and sustaining the city’s distinctiveness, which is one of Portland’s core values. It is important that all Portlanders have access to arts and to arts education, and that the region invests in homegrown talent in addition to attracting talent from elsewhere in the country.


Direction 1: Improve access to art

Direction 2: Expand Portland as a center of excellence for culture and the arts

Direction 3: Enhance art as an economic development engine

visionPDX statement:

"Portlanders create, appreciate and have access to a variety of arts and culture, reflecting our community's heart and soul."

Direction 1: Improve access to art

  • Do the directions seem like they are on the right track?

  • Which of these objectives stand out to you?

  • Which ones are exciting?

  • Is there anything important missing?

  • Will these directions and objectives help reduce disparities and improve equity in Portland?

  • How will we define success?

Objective A: Expand arts education in K-12 Schools:

Today, there are few arts and culture specialists in city schools. For example, Portland Public Schools has only 34 arts specialists for over 46,000 students.

By 2035, all of Portland’s K-12 schools have strong and established arts learning programs.

Objective B: Increase access to the arts in neighborhoods

Today, many neighborhoods have limited options for arts and culture experiences.

By 2035, residents in all neighborhoods have nearby access to accessibility to arts venues, instruction and community arts events.

Direction 2: Expand Portland as a center of excellence for culture and the arts

Objective A: Continue art event attendance

Today, over 41% of Oregonians attend arts events, well over the national average of 29%.


By 2035, Portlanders continue to attend arts events at high numbers.

Objective B: Increase public funding for the arts

Today, Portland trails other West Coast cities in per-capita public arts funding, challenging the vitality of our arts and culture organizations.

By 2035, Portland is a national leader in per-capita public arts funding.

Objective C: Diversify arts and culture in Portland

Today, many immigrant and under-represented communities see a lack of cross-cultural communication and understanding within the mainstream arts and culture scene.    

By 2035, arts and culture from all of Portland’s communities are welcomed and valued as part of the broader arts and culture scene.

Direction 3: Enhance art as an economic development engine

Objective A: Grow arts-centric businesses

Today, there are about 3,354 arts-centric businesses, like theaters, galleries and art schools, in the region. They employ over 18,000 people.

By 2035, Portland’s art-centric businesses have expanded and have considerable influence on the health and vitality of the city.

Objective B: Invest in the arts and build cultural tourism

Today, a coordinated citywide effort to build arts investment and cultural tourism is limited by organizational and time constraints, lack of designated leadership, and outsourcing of media and public relations efforts by arts groups.

By 2035, the Portland brand, built though collaboration with schools and tourism agencies and economic development groups, elevates arts investment and cultural tourism.

Objective C: Create an artists and art space network

Today, many artists lack affordable, accessible exhibition, office, and live/work spaces. Programs or funding for connecting artists to their community and market are limited.

By 2035, artists have a well-established network for connecting with each other and consumers and for finding performance, exhibition, studio and live/work space.


Technical Action Group Staff

Lead: Mark Walhood, Bureau of Planning and Sustainability
Jennifer Yocom, Office of Mayor Sam Adams
Jeff Hawthorne, Regional Arts and Culture Council
Michael Walsh, Portland Parks and Recreation
Barry Manning, Bureau of Planning and Sustainability

Cary Clarke, Office of Mayor Sam Adams
Tim DuRoche, World Affairs Council of Oregon
Ronault 'Polo' Catalani, Colored Pencils Art and Culture Night
Stanley Penkin, Portland Plan Community Involvement Committee


Portland Plan Phase II Workshop Handout

Acrobat iconAction Area: Arts, Culture and Innovation (PDF Document)


Have Your Say

Comments provided here are not considered formal public comment for the purposes of Periodic Review. Periodic Review is a substantial evaluation and revision of a local Comprehensive Plan, the purpose of which is to ensure that a city’s Comprehensive Plan is up-to-date and responsive to local, regional and state conditions and complies with the Statewide Planning Goals. If you would like to submit a formal comment for Periodic Review, please email: portlandplan@ci.portland.or.us or send written testimony to: Bureau of Planning and Sustainability/Portland Plan, 1900 SW 4th Avenue, Portland, OR 97201 and provide your first and last name, address and a contact phone number.


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