Published In

Oregon Historical Quarterly

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2001


Urbanization -- United States, Quality of life -- Oregon -- Portland Metropolitan Area


This article assesses late-20th- and early-21st-century Portland, Oregon's distinctiveness as a city that supports education, environmental quality, and civic pride. Rated highly in such indicators as libraries, parks, voter turnout, and newspaper readership, Portland has enjoyed its reputation for having a high degree of "social capital" and civic activism. On the other hand, the quality of life has come at the expense of urban growth, weak labor unions, and a loss of local businesses taken over by national corporations. Its success, however, rests on strong public support for the community and a sense of pragmatism rather than ideology.


This is the publisher's final PDF. Copyright © 2001, Oregon Historical Society. Reproduced by permission.

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