Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Garris

Portland, Oregon

29 posts in this topic

From my trip last week in Portland, Oregon...

In all, an impressive city. One of the most livable, walkable, and transitable in the US. I think its slogan is, "The City that Works," and it does so brilliantly. Clean, attractive, pretty, and efficient, it reminded me much more of a Canadian city (in all the good ways) then of a typical US city. Its residents clearly have tremendous pride in the urban oasis they've built, and all of the development there (both new and old) clearly is hyper-sensitive to creating the best street level life possible.

I'll post a couple of images a day for the next week or two or so.

I'll start with the skyline. Portland's skyline, for a city its size, actually isn't all that impressive. Portland is more about the street life. The city's taller buildings individually are fine (maybe a little bland), but there isn't a lot of density and tallest ones somewhat bookend the downtown. What makes the skyline is the geography, which is definitely dramatic.

This is the skyline from the slopes of Washington Park (on a hill overlooking the city) with Mt. Hood in the distance...

skylinefullday11zx.jpg

Here is the skyline at night...

skylinevistawidenight17fj.jpg

All the best action is at street level, with a mix of new and old buildings with delicious detailing of all types... Here's a black and white from the corner of a bank...

buildingdetailing14tb.jpg

More great facades...

buildingdetailing28yi.jpg

Detail of the entrance gate to the city's tiny (and still somewhat gritty) Chinatown

chinatowngate0vy.jpg

Ok, more tomorrow!

- Garris

Providence, RI

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Beautiful pictures, Garris.

My favorite was the one of it at night.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From what I have seen and heard, Portland looks like a great place. And what would a city be without at least a little grittiness?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Amazing as always dude.  10/10

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Thanks!

Here are some more shots from Portland...

A good look at a typical Portland Cityscape. This city might have one of the most friendly scaled, livable and walkable cityscapes of any I've visited in the US...

cityscape12pi.jpg

An impressive fountain in the distance in Portland's waterfront park...

fountain7ud.jpg

Home and office mix easily in Portland, as housing and commercial structures sit side by side...

homeandoffice1et.jpg

The intricate Jackson Tower Building near Pioneer Square...

jacksontowerdusk5db.jpg

And finally, a black and white shot of a kayaker on Portland's active riverfront...

kayakbw6ck.jpg

That's it for today! More tomorrow...

- Garris

Providence, RI

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow. Portland and Kansas City are prolly the most underrated in the US. Along with many others im sure. Keep em commin Garris.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

...Keep em commin Garris.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Will do!

Here is a look at the Koin Building...

koinbldg19cd.jpg

Here is a great mural in the NW portion of town. I have no idea what it's for...

mural7so.jpg

Here's another unique mural...

pillar8pv.jpg

Some nice signage, this one for a restaurant (I think) near Park...

neonrestaurantsign8ru.jpg

The Friday night I was there, they play old movies in a Park under a tent. I thought this couple watching from the sidelines made for a great photo...

oldmovie2qx.jpg

More tomorrow!

- Garris

Providence, RI

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


I do trust you got some shots of the trolleys for all us rail fans.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do trust you got some shots of the trolleys for all us rail fans.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Yeah seriously Garris, you better had! And I hope you give us your opinion on Portlands coveted mass transit system too....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks to everyone for the complements! I'm using a 1st generation Canon Digital Rebel SLR, but I don't believe that gear makes the photograph by a long shot. Click on my website link at the end of the post, and I challenge you to figure out which of my photos was shot with the digital SLR, and which with my previous $240 3 megapixel Canon A70 consumer camera. I bet you can't. It's all about light, timing, composition, and subject. Don't get seduced by megapixels! Unless you want to print posters bigger than 8 x 11 or you do a ton of cropping, it really doesn't matter.

Also, take a ton of shots! While I only have about 35-40 Portland shots I consider good enough to post for you all, I probably took several hundred in Portland, the rest of which I don't think are all that... A professional with high standards who sells his work for a living and runs a camera store once told me that if he gets just one "fantastic" photo he could sell out of a trip, he considers it a success. Any more than one sellable fantastic shot is a "miracle."

Continuing with the Portland shots...

The theme for today will be streetscapes...

Here's a look at the Regal Movie Theater off of Park (I think?)...

regaltheater9co.jpg

Looking North up Broadway towards Pioneer Square (I was afflicted by bad lens flare here... Does anyone know how to minimize this at night and change these to starbursts instead?)

streetlevel13rz.jpg

A coffee shop off of SW 6th Street...

streetlevel1xj.jpg

I honestly have no recollection which street this is... Maybe looking South on NW 2nd? Can a local help me?

streetscape15ve.jpg

That's all for today! More tomorrow...

- Garris

Providence, RI

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


You know, I actually didn't purposely take any photos of the LRT (I think they were so ubiquitious, that they rapidly blended into the background for me...), but I did get one or two shots that were only "OK" in which the LRT is a main component of the photo. I'll post them tomorrow...

My impressions of the LRT were uniformly positive. They are quiet, clean, and convenient. The airport to the city run is a piece of cake. When I was walking around at 7 AM on a Sunday and 12:30 AM on a Saturday weeknight and at all the times in between, the LRT's had high ridership. At the wedding there I attended, the groom's father, who lives in a suburb 15 minutes outside the city, said he takes the LRT to work every day.

On the flip side, Portland is a pedestrian and even auto friendly city. Parking spaces are widely available, garages are inexpensive, and traffic managable.

I know the LRT is very controversial locally, and they consider it less of a success than it has been portrayed nationally. After asking locals, I couldn't get a great idea of why it's been controversial. I think it's just because it's gotten so much ink and so many of the residents don't use it... Again, could a Portland local or someone who knows the area well here chime in?

- Garris

Providence, RI

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, take a ton of shots!  While I only have about 35-40 Portland shots I consider good enough to post for you all, I probably took several hundred in Portland, the rest of which I don't think are all that...  A professional with high standards who sells his work for a living and runs a camera store once told me that if he gets just one "fantastic" photo he could sell out of a trip, he considers it a success.  Any more than one sellable fantastic shot is a "miracle." 

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

That's funny that you say that. When I am taking photos, I delete them right out of memory as I go. I probably keep about a quarter of them, and only post about 1/10th of the ones I take ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It appears you are looking South on SW 2nd Ave based on the location of the Koin Tower. LRT has been controversial in part because of the tremendous cost, and many feel that is a handout to contractors. I don't have a problem with LRT except for the following, which I made on another Portland thread in The Pacific Northwest category under "Portland, the beautiful, yet ill-represented city":

I've lived in the Beaverton area since I was 5 years old, and am now in college out in the Midwest. I am aware of the MAX expnasion, and future plans to extend it to Vancouver. I visit home a few times a year.

Here are my problems with light rail downtown.

1) It is ridiculously slow because it stops every two blocks.

2) Until it gets past Lloyd Center going East, or Goose Hollow going West, it is so slow. The problem stems from the fact that the system is on street level. It either needs to be buried or elevated.

3) There are no express lines. This was not planned out very well when it was first designed.

Tri-Met is getting the framework for a viable system in place. However, if it is really going to have an impact to get people out of their cars more often, then it needs to have express lines and be elevated. I believe burying it would be too expensive and there may be conflicts with the water table.

Elevating the lines in downtown would keep the system from shutting down whenever there is a parade, run, or some big event around Pioneer Courthouse Square.

Making an express line from say Hillsboro TC to downtown with one stop at Beaverton TC would be one good option. A similiar line could be done for the Eastside portion. If there were rail spurs that rejoined with the mainline, the cars could be timed so that the local and express lines run conurrently.

Hopefully once the groundwork is laid to Vancouver, and the base is complete, the system can be made more competitive. Someday it might be good to have more than 2 cars to a train.

That sums up my issues with LRT. My hope is that as the city continues to grow, these improvements will be made. I love Portland, and if I move back to Oregon after graduation, I will live in the city. I can't stand Beaverton anymore.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, and that mural is for Ron Tonkin, which is a large car dealership. I believe their logo is "For the love of cars," which explains the cupids.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the feedback on the Portland LRT...

Just in time for Saturday, here are my photos of the Portland Saturday Market

[url=http://imageshack.us]satmarketmarket9es.jpg

Various scenes of the marketplace bazaar...

market16qv.jpg

market28eg.jpg

market34ip.jpg

More than the guy's balloon hat, I love the double take of the woman in the background...

marketballoonhat9vd.jpg

Lots of food vendors...

marketfood6nn.jpg

A man looks down at the Saturday market from a bridge overpass...

marketmanbridgecolor3mp.jpg

A mime performs at the Market...

marketmime4tc.jpg

Nearby, a man with, uh, interesting, earrings plays an Australian instrument (I think...)

marketplayer3tu.jpg

Market vendor signage...

marketsign0ty.jpg

More to come!

- Garris

Providence, RI

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.