Case Study: Orenco Station, Oregon

Orenco light rail station on the Blue Line in Portland, Oregon, opened to service in 1998. The city of Hillsboro imposed high density restrictions around the station in 1995. The neighboorhood developed rapidly around the station in the late 1990s and the region to the north of the neighborhood in the 2010s as developers bought large areas of land and built housing and retail units.

Here we look at the population density, commuting and vehicle ownership data in and around the neighborhood. ACS 2010, 2015 and 2021 data along with census track boundaries of 2011 and 2020 of Washington County have been used. For 1990 data: Steven Manson, Jonathan Schroeder, David Van Riper, Tracy Kugler, and Steven Ruggles. IPUMS National Historical Geographic Information System: Version 17.0 nhgis0001_ds120_1990_tract (‘Persons’ ) and nhgis0002_ds123_1990_tract (‘Means of Transportation to Work’). Minneapolis, MN: IPUMS. 2022.

Please turn off layers so as to view a single year’s data in each map, and click on census tracks to see additional information.

Population Density

Red tracks have the lowest densities while the blues have the highest. The increase in population density from 1990 to 2020 in the Orenco neighborhood and in census tracks immediately south of the station is obvious.

Percentage of Public Transit Commuters

In the census tracts to the north and east of the station, an increase in the percent of commuters who take public transit is visible.

Vehicle Ownership

Percentage of workers to whom no vehicles are available have increased from 2010 to 2015 in the north of the station. From 2015 to 2021, the concentration of non-vehicle-owner workers closer to the neighborhood increased, which may also be due to the census track boundary changes in 2020 that may have concealed this concentration in 2015.