Urban planners consider Portland, Oregon to be a model city because Portland has been so successful in revitalizing its downtown area and limiting urban sprawl.
Its light-rail transit system has reduced traffic congestion and air pollution, and coordinated land-use planning has kept the city from spreading uncontrolled into the surrounding countryside.
Unlike many U.S. cities, more people live and work in the downtown area now than 30 years ago.
Almost half of Oregon’s residents live in the Portland metropolitan area.
The city lies along the Willamette River, close to where it joins the Columbia River.
The Pacific Northwest states are marked by varied terrain not found in other parts of the United States, including tundra in Alaska and rainforests in Washington.