Choices that Created the Oregon Mystique: Governor Tom McCall's Foresight and Accomplishments

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Land use took center stage for McCall when he expanded protection from the coast and the Willamette River Greenway to the entire state. He described the emergence of the conservation mood that swept the state in "The Oregon Land Use Story." His response to projected uncontrolled urbanization, as described in "The Willamette Valley: Choices for the Future," reflected a sense of urgency for land protection measures. It took many years to mobilize support for his cause, but capitalizing on his ability to turn a phrase he garnered public, and eventually legislative support for SB 100 with oratory rich in imagery: "sagebrush subdivisions, coastal condo-mania and the ravenous rampage of suburbia in the Willamette Valley..." A version of SB 100 that McCall feared might have been too watered down became law in 1973.

Senate Bill 100 original text

This comprehensive article summarizes the main elements of SB 100 and explains the requirements of the law.

Toward the end of his second term as governor, McCall directed his executive staff (Robert K. Logan, Lawrence R. Lucas, and Ernest M. Ankrim) in summarizing the history of Oregon's land use protection movement, from the cleanup of the Willamette River to the passage of the Beach Bill through passage of SB 10 and SB100, in "The Oregon Land Use Story." (1974)


The Willamette Valley Choices for the Future (PDF 36.9 MB)

The product of "Project Foresight," a 7-month program to analyze development trends in the Willamette Valley and gather citizen views on growth. The report, published on a small scale in 1972, projected two scenarios 30 years into the future, demonstrating the likely consequences of different approaches to accomodating population growth in what was already the most populated part of the state. Broad distribution of the information heightened public interest in planning and set the stage for the eventual passage of SB 100.
Copyright 2005 Janet Bassett