Since I moved to the Kenton neighborhood, I’ve always liked the swath of houses between I-5, Interstate, Lombard, and Rosa Parks Way. Like my little section of Kenton, this stretch of blocks used to be mostly cute bungalow-style housing with good amounts of yard.
In the past five years it’s become cute bungalow-style housing interspersed with large multi-unit spaces, only one of which has parking. This area is a good spot for multi-unit construction as it’s right on the Yellow Line and a very walkable neighborhood. But without neighborhood regulation of parking, it’s not the most ideal. And I miss the little houses when they go.
This house is holding fast. It’s on a corner, so it won’t be hemmed in on all sides by multi-unit housing. It will stay for now, but that fence indicates that the lot next door is changing.
Its neighbor is not long for this world. This is a 1926 861-square foot house with a 600-foot unfinished basement that last sold in 1997 for $88,500. It sold in March, 2020, for $540,000.
This was part of the lot. It had a big, shady yard due to those trees.
Next door to the little house above was an empty lot. I’m not sure, but I think it might have been the garage for this little house, which is also for sale. You’ll note that the empty lot has become a multi-unit structure. The yellow house was built in 1926 and it looks like the owner recently died. If Zillow is to be believed, the house has sold for $372,500. This has a chance of not being torn down, but I’m not holding my breath.
Next to that little house, is one that I’ve got my eye on. This one is owner occupied, but I’d guess the owners are getting up there in years. This house has a garage on its lot that looks to be bigger than the house.
Here is another one of my favorites, a few blocks down. It’s a 1941 Ranch house (so compact and cute.) It was last sold in 1987 for $38,000. Zillow tells me it’s off market. I thought I had seen that it sold, but who knows. I love the siding. I’m guessing this lot will be subdivided and the house torn down.
One street over, is this little gem, slated to become a multi-unit corner of the block like you can see in the right side of the photo. It was built in 1925, is 932 square feet, and has at 440 square foot unfinished basement. The previous owners bought it in 2009 for $234,000 and it sold in June of 2018 for $650,000. Next Portland reported in 2019: Construct 3 story (18) unit apartment building with associated site work, but that might be those ones across the street. Read on to hear about that project.
This street, at least on its south side, doesn’t have cars parked on the street.
I think this has to do with every house having a driveway, and every house being a single-family dwelling. Once multi-family dwellings appear, street parking picks up, since builders aren’t required to include parking.
This is a pretty wide street, but a lot of Portland side streets (this is especially true in a lot of southeast neighborhoods) feel unsafe to drive on when cars are parked bumper to bumper on both sides. It’s not unusual for a car driving down the street to pull over to let an oncoming car pass them.
I’d like to see the Portland City Council get on top of this, but they aren’t likely to. Fixing things would be a pain, and the fact that we have city-wide representation, rather than districts means that people can’t really band together in an area with unsafe parking situation and demand their representative do stuff about it.
Someday we’re going to revamp our city’s governing system. And then we can actually start being the city that works.
Some of the protesters at the Police Union building took a turn down Denver and did some burning and property destruction in the Kenton Downtown area. I went for a walk the next morning to take in the destruction.
I support protestors call for racial justice. I’m not a fan of property destruction. I think the anarchists are doing a great job painting all protestors as destructive which isn’t the case. But being anarchists, they are quite happy to destroy a movement for their own pleasure.
I was out in the seven o’clock hour and things had already been tidied.
This part of Denver Ave. has been cut off from car traffic so the businesses (many of which are restaurants) can have more room to sell things. This is a program that has been happening in commercial areas around Portland this summer. You can see how they make the stencils for the sidewalk chalk shapes that indicate walkways and then use the stencils to partition areas into rooms. I find this to be a very clever use of materials.
I think this might have been the part of town where the dumpster was set on fire. You can see some charred wood.
Here is a bit of stencil that wasn’t wholly consumed by flame.
This is another one was burned a little. You can see it in the lower-left corner.
Here’s a bit more melting.
I think Bart’s Barber Shop had already had their window smashed in. It wouldn’t have been boarded up so quickly. I think the graffiti is new. You can also see some other graffiti on the window over the logo and some old graffiti on the Kenton Lodge cornerstone.
I wanted to take these pictures because when people hear “riot” and “fire” and “property destruction” I think a lot of them picture rubble and complete decimation. As you can see here, there is property damage that will cost money and that sucks. But it’s not complete destruction that businesses need to rise, Phoenix-like out of the ashes.
Among the things I’ve learned in 2020? That the nondescript building not far from my house is the headquarters of the Portland Police Union. How do I know this? Because it’s become a regular site for nightly protests in my neighborhood.
Though I’m close enough to walk to this corner in ten-ish minutes, I don’t ever hear the protests, or smell the tear gas. But sometimes on my morning walks I see the remnants of the previous night’s protest.
I think the fastest way for the police to end the protests is to stop acting aggressively when faced with people protesting that the police are too aggressive.
Another thing I learned in 2020? A lot of times (especially this summer) when police declare a protest a riot it means they want everyone to go home.
It’s the development notice sign. Which means it’s time to get out the camera and take a picture of something that soon will cease to be.
When I first moved to Portland, someone pointed out how Portland had so many little apartment complexes, ones like this that are single story and have both parking and greenery. I always thought I would live in one someday. But I’d better act fast, because they are being replaced by taller structures with no parking and little greenery.
This complex has been one of my favorites. I’ve featured it before. In the picture above, you can see (if you squint) where several paint colors were sampled. Those paint samples have been there for years.
I’m worried for this tenant. She always has a ton of potted flowers. I’m guessing she will have to relocate when they start building the new place and I hope her next place has opportunities to grow things.
The plus of the coming demolition is that this new complex will be affordable housing located very near a Max station and a Fred Meyer. But I will miss this little spot. And I don’t look forward to a year of walking in the bike lane after they fence off the sidewalk.
This is my first time walking on this sidewalk. Prior to this building being built, I had no reason to walk on this side of the street as it was fenced off, and maybe it didn’t have a sidewalk? But now the corner of N. Interstate and N. Argyle Street has a huge affordable housing complex, which I’m quite happy to see. And the sidewalk is great for walking on.
This house has been one of my favorites. It’s just down the street, anchoring N. Watts, right before the street loops and turns into N. Minnesota for one short block. When I first moved to the neighborhood, I’d guess that the house was owned by an older couple. They did a great job keeping it tidy, and they planted a garden in the empty adjacent lot every spring.
The house has been sold and the new owners aren’t as fastidious. [Checks Portland Maps] As I suspected, it’s owned by the Gates Family Trust, and the address is out of state. So it’s a rental. They’ve also sectioned off the lot next door, which sold for $74,900 in 2015. The owners of the lot aren’t fastidious at all, nor do they plant a vegetable garden. Instead, they seem to apply pesticides to kill the weeds now and then.
The sale of this section of land had me crossing the little green house off my list of next places to potentially live. I wouldn’t want to move in and then immediately have all my light blocked by new construction.
The book said Povey’s name could still be seen in the front steps. It took a bit of squinting, but Matt eventually found it and pointed it out to me. Can you see it? Look at the top step.
Portland has hosted its share of protests focused on racial injustice, police brutality and the killing of George Floyd and others. The Irvington Neighborhood was awash in signs included this Burma-Shave-type message:
Last sign says: Our Minds
We spotted this fella in some side yard bamboo.
Aside from signs, Irvington is awash in Little Free Libraries. I found a big win in this one. Look at all these postcards!
And everyone can use a neighborhood cat review.
Cambia Todo Cambia translates as Everything Changes (or maybe Changes, Everything Changes?) You can see a delightful performance here and read the translated lyrics here.
I can tell that the Crystal Garden Apartments were built when Apartments were faaaaaaancy. Guess how!
It’s that plaque telling “tradesmen” to go around to the side.
I found a great site that has a list of apartment houses, including the Crystal Garden Apartments. The same site also has two images of my beloved Rose-Friend Apartment, now torn down, but forever in my heart as my first Portland home. Actually, I’ve now just spent 15 minutes clicking around the site which includes an interactive map with current and destroyed Apartment Houses. There were apparently three other apartment houses in the next block over from my beloved Rose-Friends Apartments. This is a fabulous site and you should check it out. The Apartment House in Portland.
I wonder if the cat at 1538 and the dog at 1530 are aware of each other’s presence.
This gorgeous house has unique window covers on the second story.
Names of Black people killed by police.
I also thought these signs were beautiful despite the sadness that comes with them having to be made in the first place.
This was a great walk! Thanks Portland City Walks!