Integrated Land Use and Transportation Policies: What Can Reykjavík, Iceland and Other Cities Learn from Portland, Oregon?

This paper discusses integrated land use and transportation planning policies in Portland, Oregon and the lessons learned in the city’s fight against sprawl and extensive automobile-use. In particular, it focuses on how Portland’s experience with such policies can be of use to other cities which are dealing with sprawl and extensive automobile-use, particularly Reykjavík, Iceland. Portland is very famous for progressive planning and there is a wealth of information in the literature about its experience. The city is often mentioned in relation to planning initiatives such as urban growth management, smart growth, transit-oriented development (TOD), New Urbanism, and integrated land use and transportation planning to name a few. Integrated land use and transportation planning aims at mitigating problems stemming from automobile use and creating a compact and liveable city environment with land use solutions. Like most North-American cities, Reykjavík was mostly developed after the arrival of the automobile and is considered sprawled compared to most other European cities. Therefore it could learn from cities such as Portland which has dealt with similar problems as Reykjavík in an innovative and strategic way for close to four decades.