YIMBYtown 2020/2021:
Portland, Oregon

What we now refer to as the Portland Metro area sits on traditional village sites of the Multnomah, Wasco, Cowlitz, Kathlamet, Clackamas, Bands of Chinook, Tualatin Kalapuya, Molalla and many other tribes.

CONFERENCE UPDATE: Friday, June 24, 2021: We are in active discussions with a number of venues around Portland to determine the soonest available date that we can host the YIMBYtown conference. As soon as we are able to finalize our date and location, we will be reaching out to 2020 conference speakers and attendees. Sign up to our emailing list to be the first to hear about our rescheduled conference date. Thanks for your patience, thanks for getting vaccinated, and looking forward to hosting you in Portland as soon as possible!

CONFERENCE UPDATE: Sunday, December 14, 2020: We’re sincerely bummed that we didn’t have the opportunity to welcome you to Portland this spring. It’s been nine months since we indefinitely postponed our event, and I wanted to reach out to you and give you a quick update about our current plans for the conference.

We still fully intend to host the next YIMBYtown conference in Portland as soon as it is safe and appropriate to host an event and welcome y’all to town. While the news in recent weeks about a forthcoming COVID-19 vaccine is encouraging, we regrettably still don’t have any clarity on when we’ll have the green light to plan for this conference in confidence. At this point, our plan is to keep reading headlines, keep crossing our fingers, and reassess in March if it’s feasible for us to make plans to host the conference in Portland in the summer or fall of 2021.
We intend to keep much of our programming intact from our planned conference in April – we’ve already reached out to our scheduled speakers and look forward to confirming their continued participation in our event if at all possible. Stay tuned!

YIMBYtown will be refunding tickets this month (December 2020).
We intend to ensure conference attendees who purchased tickets to attend YIMBYtown this past spring will be given priority to re-purchase tickets ahead of the general public. We’ll make sure to reach out via email, social media, and our website when conference tickets are available for (re)purchase.

Sightline Institute and local pro-housing group Portland: Neighbors Welcome are excited to host YIMBYtown 2020 in Portland, Oregon. YIMBYtown 2020 rides a wave of momentum in the Pacific Northwest and around the country for housing affordability and availability solutions. In 2019, Oregon became the first state to legalize middle housing and pass of anti rent-gouging protections, statewide. Seattle passed trailblazing Accessory Dwelling Unit policy. Austin, Texas unlocked all neighborhoods for below-market homes and Minneapolis set the bar for cities, making space for more neighbors by legalizing triplexes citywide.

YIMBYtown is the national convening of the pro-housing “yes in my backyard” movement. It’s a three-day gathering for grassroots community organizers, political leaders, educators, housing providers, and activists to identify problems, create solutions, and share resources and strategies. YIMBYtown offers inspiration, tools, and a network for those working to advance abundant, affordable housing and sustainable development in cities across the United States, Canada, and beyond.

At YIMBYtown 2020: Fair and Sustainable Cities, we will spotlight major affordability wins, bringing successful housing campaign leaders to share ideas and lessons for local and statewide action. The 2020 elections also present a unique opportunity to influence the national housing policy agenda.

This year’s conference program will also focus on two (inextricably linked) issues that demand our attention:

Climate change: The IPCC has concluded that we have fewer than 11 years to avoid climate catastrophe, leaving us little time to sufficiently decarbonize our economy. If we are to succeed, more efficient land use will be a key strategy, supporting effective public transit, enabling walking and letting more people live car-free. As Grist recently put it: “You can’t tackle climate change without tackling sprawl.” Local housing movements are joining forces with community partners to re-legalize a range of home choices, improve transit, remove parking regulations, and combat freeway expansions, in favor of building more equitable, sustainable neighborhoods. Housing and climate movements can work together to achieve more energy-efficient, climate-resilient cities, from the Green New Deal to rethinking federal housing and land use, transportation, and infrastructure policies. Housing policy is climate policy.

Community stabilization: For many communities who have been discriminated against, and for low-income people, the housing crisis is nothing new. Today’s housing shortages demand not only that we build enough housing for everyone who wants to live in our cities; they also demand policies that alleviate the immediate suffering that the housing crisis is having on our most vulnerable residents; decrease segregation; expand access to areas of opportunity; redress past harms; and avoid future ones. At YIMBYtown 2020, we will share successful models for building enough housing to curb prices, fully implementing Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing laws, and actively fighting displacement in growing cities. We will explore how these strategies can work together to house our full communities stably and affordably.

We look forward to hosting you in Portland soon!

About the venue: YIMBYtown 2020 will be hosted by the Eliot Center. Located in downtown Portland, Eliot Center is committed to hosting events that support sustainability, social justice, the arts, community, and education. The Center was founded by the First Unitarian Church of Portland, but the venue is nondenominational, includes no religious iconography, and explicitly welcomes all regardless of faith. The First Unitarian campus is also host to Outside In, a nonprofit that helps homeless youth and other marginalized people move towards improved health and self-sufficiency.


Get updates about YIMBYtown!