Regional planning, governance, policy process


Long after other areas of Oregon had already done so, the local agencies in the Portland region served by the Oregon Department of Transportation decided to form a regional Area Commission on Transportation. Why they decided to do so and what caused local agencies to delay forming one until long after other regions was not immediately clear. In this article, I examine the policy documents around the formation of the Region 1 ACT and how its policy history represents wider historical trends on regional transportation decision making nationally. To do so, I describe Oregon’s regional policy making structure followed by an overview of the organization, composition, and authority of the ACT system. I then examine broad national transportation policy trends and regional governance literature in the United States, concluding with an evaluation of the ACT system based on this analysis. I use this evaluation to identify improvement opportunities and future research needs. While the ACT system exhibits many characteristics of an inclusive regional process, there remain opportunities to improve and clarify ACT decision-making authority and regional stakeholder participation.

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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.