Forterra is dedicated to a simple idea: what we do on the land matters — profoundly. Our choices determine whether or not we have places of beauty around us. Whether we have places to grow food. Places to recreate. Places for affordable housing. Places to experience arts and culture.
Choices about what we do on the land are always important. In the Pacific Northwest, they are especially critical right now: a period of record population growth, a huge construction boom, widespread gentrification and displacement, and intensifying climate change.
Market forces often result in good choices about land use. But not always, and that’s when Forterra steps in. We focus on lands that are KEYSTONES of the region’s long-term social, environmental and economic health, and that are at high risk of being lost. For example: An iconic wildland that might be carved up. Prime farmland that could become a subdivision. Urban forest that’s threatened with being a strip mall. Land near a new transit line that would ideally be affordable housing — but might not.
Over our nearly 30-year history we have completed more than 450 separate land transactions that have protected 275,000 acres worth greater than $500 million. We have amplified this impact by championing policies like transfer of development rights, which work at scale to save threatened farm and forest land region wide. And we have led large-scale stewardship and restoration efforts across the area’s keystone parks, greenspaces and riparian areas, involving thousands of volunteers and more than a million person-hours.
Recognizing how historic patterns of land use and property ownership have often marginalized low-income people and people of color, we work to center these communities in all our work. Central to this is our Forterra Strong Communities Funds (FSCF), a social-impact investment fund dedicated to keeping our region inclusive and welcoming to all.