Housing and Transportation

Apartment building in Portland

Healthy stable families and communities are dependent on a solid roof over their head, healthy affordable foods, quality education and the ability to safely, easily and affordably get around.

This is why thoughtful transportation investments that are aligned with affordable housing investments are required to meet the needs of people living on lower incomes, communities of color, older adults, and people with disabilities.

To meet the needs of the least well-served community members, it is critical that decisions about where and how to invest future and existing invest housing revenue funding be coordinated with the region’s transportation investment decisions.

Transit becomes more useful to people when it is frequent, fast, and connected safely and conveniently with walkable neighborhoods. With housing and transportation investments, we must prevent mass displacement and restore housing affordability by ensuring that our transportation investments prioritize developing affordable housing, especially in conjunction with any new public transit infrastructure.

Useful bus and train service supports everyone in our region, reduces the public health and environmental harms of transportation, and provides an affordable choice so residents can access jobs and services without the expense of a private vehicle.

Creating safer, more livable streets and communities must be a key outcome of all transportation and housing investments. The region’s most unsafe streets have been historically located near affordable
housing. Transportation projects must prioritize the most dangerous streets, making them safe for people who depend on walking, transit, or riding a bicycle.

Transportation and housing are inextricably linked, and already squeezed in our region, where low income communities and communities of color are quickly being displaced from their communities, forced to travel farther for work, school, and needed services.

Rarely do people use only one mode of travel. People want travel options and shouldn’t be forced to rely on a private vehicle to get around.

We support aligning housing funding with transportation investments. To help prevent mass involuntary displacement, we believe housing bond dollars should be used in areas where we know transportation investments will occur, for example in the SW Corridor and other areas where frequent transit exists or will be provided.

The Portland metropolitan region can be an incredible place to live. But our region is currently a place of tremendous disparities in wealth, health, education, jobs, and access to services. When we talk about building livable communities, we must mean “livable” for all — regardless of age, ability, income or background.

We envision a region where everyone can live, work, play, pray, and thrive. It’s a region of communities where all our neighbors have the opportunity to enjoy the benefits of our success, and where we’re united in tackling our challenges — together. To do that, we must build our region’s transportation system on a foundation of social equity.