Justice & Sustainability Associates is honored to be mentioned in a recent article by EcoDistricts. We are committed to continuing to work with EcoDistricts on the Innovation Quadrant to bring strong economic prosperity and equitable development to the city of Portland.

In a city known for its innovative land use and transportation investments, the city is at it again. The Portland Innovation Quadrant (IQ) is a unique partnership to advance next generation economic and urban development in the central city through the lens of equity, resiliency, and sustainability. In 2014, four of the regions primary anchor institutions, OHSU, PSU, PCC and OMSI initiated conversations in an effort to leverage physical proximity and better align priorities — from joint research and workforce development to new, shared facilities and physical infrastructure in the Central Eastside Industrial District, South Waterfront, and South of Market/University District.  What began as a series of informal meetings ultimately became a major priority of the City’s recently adopted 2035 Comprehensive Plan.

With a formal Board of Directors established in January 2018, the vision of the IQ is to create a dynamic, accessible hub where anyone from Portland or beyond can connect with the entrepreneurs, place-makers, educational institutions, and visionaries at the center of the city’s booming innovation ecosystem.  Its mission is to design and accelerate a thriving, equitable district of economic innovation in the heart of Portland, Oregon.

In 2017, the IQ partnered with EcoDistricts to deepen their commitment to equity, resilience and climate action using the EcoDistricts Protocol as a framework for action. With the support  from Meyer Memorial Trust, EcoDistricts provided the IQ with additional technical support and staffing capacity during its start-up phase. The work focused on the IQ’s potential to showcase to the entire country that redevelopment that catalyzes economic development and technology leadership can simultaneously address the City’s equity gap and need to prepare for the impacts of climate change. Over the course of the past two years, EcoDistricts delivered multiple trainings to the IQ’s Board of Directors on diversity equity and inclusion, climate protection and resilience with partners such as Justice and Sustainability Associates and AECOM.

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