I had several thoughts while reading the Press Herald’s excellent series on Portland’s affordable housing problems (“Welcome to Portland – No Vacancy,” Nov. 15-20).

One is that strong, independent journalism is as important to a city’s vitality as a diverse population. So congratulations to all the hands that made this story possible.

My second thought was this: After finishing the series, I went online to get more background, and began reading an article about rising rents, scant affordable housing, displaced artists, changing neighborhoods, etc., in Portland – before realizing that they were talking about our Left Coast namesake.

We’re not alone; most cities in America are grappling with the same housing challenges you described. Maybe it’s time for some truly constructive communication between cities to share experiences and explore solutions to this complex problem.

Tim Wallace