Oregon Land Use

Land Use Issues

An Oregon Story

Oregon has a unique land use system that is the envy of many other states, and which (for the most part) has prevented Oregon from being characterized by urban sprawl while preserving our farm and forest lands, beaches and areas of natural beauty. Where did the land use system come from? Who conceived it? What were the problems it was designed to solve?

An Oregon Story: Saving Our Beaches, Farmland and More

This film by Jim Gilbert and Joe Wilson, and narrated by Robert Liberty, is an intimate exploration of Oregon’s decades-long history of innovative land-use planning and conservation practices. It introduces many dedicated leaders, farmers and other individuals, who worked tirelessly to create and later defend our land-use planning program, which has protected Oregon’s fertile and productive farm and ranch lands, our beaches and iconic places from urban sprawl and other inappropriate development.

This documentary is a testament to the spirit of Oregon and to the stewardship and determination of its many citizens, who have worked so hard to keep it a great place to live, work, recreate and farm. The film showcases our shared values and our dedication to preserving and nurturing our land, honoring a heritage that dates back generations.

The 25-minute version of the film is available as an easy-to-watch streaming video, that is a must see refresher course for most Oregonians, and a must see introduction for new residents of our beautiful state!

Importance of Farmland

It’s a simple proposition: no soil, no food. Farmland is the easiest to develop because it is usually flat with good soil and adequate water. French Prairie possesses the best soils in Oregon with more than adequate supplies of water, which is why it has historically been Oregon’s breadbasket. Understanding the relationship of farmland to food production and our society’s well being is a necessary undertaking.

News Coverage

The Oregonian
Clackamas County starts drumming up support for land use deal

July 30, 2014

Statesman Journal
Guest Opinion: Woodburn leaders must respect the law

July 17, 2014

Statesman Journal
Guest Opinion: Oregon Land-use System Needs Overhaul

July 17, 2014

Oregon Department of Agriculture
Press Release: Report argues for thoughtful approach to development

December 21, 2011

The Oregonian
New Report says Oregon farmland is valuable

December 29, 2011