Monday, January 30, 2012

South Waterfront Greenway Hearing Thursday

Here are more details on the Greenway Hearing taking place on Thursday this week:

There will be a neighborhood association meeting on Wednesday at 7:00pm at Umpqua Bank.

According to the Portland Parks Dept, the South Waterfront Greenway Project is "a refinement plan for the Central District section of the South Waterfront Greenway".

I had to poke around their site to educate myself on what the project is all about. There I found a few renderings of the future Greenway:
Future Greenway overhead view
From Curry St
Atwater Cut-away

36 Views of South Waterfront photos

You must check out the photography of Daogreer Earth Works. A recently posted series titled "36 Views of South Waterfront" captures some beautiful late-afternoon-to-sunset shots.

Photo by Daogreerearthworks
Photo by Daogreerearthworks
Dao Greer offers a few reflections (in several senses of the word) on the neighborhood:

The colors, light, clouds and water reflecting on the buildings around us are so often photo-worthy. I am always happy to find someone else appreciating them with camera and words.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Happy Birthday Tram

The OHSU Aerial Tram turned 5 this weekend. I guess Mother Nature chose to celebrate with a Happy Birthday rainbow this morning. Did you all catch it?

Yesterday, a little birthday party took place at OHSU CHH. There were Tram Artists, Tram Photographers, Tram Tour Guides, a fish stand, and cupcakes.
All about the Tram
Tram Artistry

Friday, January 27, 2012

Tram Party Tomorrow

The OHSU Aerial Tram turns 5 years old tomorrow. Party Time.

When: Saturday, 1:00-3:00pm
"On Saturday (not Friday), the OHSU Center for Health and Healing will hold a “behind the scenes” celebration from 1 to 3 p.m. featuring:

•   Tours of the Tram engineering room and control tower with the operations team.
•   A local art and photography exhibit of the Tram.
•   Information on hiking and biking routes from the Tram’s Upper and Lower Towers.
•   Information about development in the South Waterfront District.
•   Information about "Get to Know Your Tram Month," scheduled for June 2012."

No word on whether there will be free Tram rides...

Also, did you know the Tram has a Facebook page?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Got yer high water pants?

The Willamette River is at a fairly high water level, and one brave soul was taking advantage of it this weekend. The clear sunny skies didn't hurt.  I admire this guy - he looked cold.
If you have wondered about the unusual pole, rope and wires structure out on the waterfront, it's an unofficial challenge course for kayakers.

Further south, the water levels are washing over the trail again (where the bike path meets SW Pendleton St). Luckily, this particular spot has a small bypass, not to worry; bike and pedestrian traffic can still get through.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Grimm Episode 9 Portland filming locations

Marty the Mouse - photo from
Grimm Episode 9 "Of Mouse and Man"
On this week's episode: "When a man is found dead in a dumpster, the investigation leads to a sly snake and a timid mouse."
Aired: Friday, Jan. 20, 9/8c

Bridge of the Week: The show opens with a shot of the St. Johns Bridge as a backdrop to our weekly Papyrus font quote (intended to frame each week's story). 

The first crime is a murder taking place in a parking garage under a brick apartment complex. This is fictionally located at '841 SE Long St' and the sign on the building reads "Chaney Arms Apartments".
Shot from
OregonLive reports this location as the "Wellesley Apartments on SE 15th".  Looks accurate:
Photo from GoogleMaps - 829 SE 15th Ave
A reader reports the apartment building is actually the "Melcliff Apartments" at 11th & Morrison. Hmm....
From GoogleMaps - 711 SE 11th
Next, the cops head over to investigate a tip at a "junkyard over on the east side". It was a matter of time before Mississippi Ave made an appearance on Grimm. It seems The ReBuilding Center (shown at right) at 3625 N. Mississippi Ave was perfectly TV-ready to play "Marty's Junkshop". Filming took place in the middle of October.
Photo Courtesy of Sally Filler
The investigation continues, leading the team to the "Law Office of Mason Snyder", an ambulance-chasing attorney (who is also a snake-like creature). This was filmed at the Portland Bahai Center in mid-October. (At some point later in the show, I think they referred to this location as "a building on Grand".)
Mason Snyder in his Law Office - photo from

Friday, January 20, 2012

More Macadam / OR 43 closures

Macadam Avenue / Oregon 43 is not faring well with this storm.

Heads up if you commute between Lake Oswego and Portland:
Oregon 43 (Macadam) between Portland and Lake O is essentially closed today due to the road surface collapsing. One lane is open and delays could be up to 2 hours.

The latest update on ODOT's TripCheck site this morning:

MP 4.44

ORE43, Portland
Estimated delay of 2 hours or greater
Lanes Affected: (Southbound) 1 Lane
Comments: The road surface has collapsed on Highway 43 southbound at Military road. The right lane is closed. Use caution.
Public Contact: ODOT/TMOC Portland
Incident #: 121849
Last Updated: 01/19/2012 6:11 pm
Yesterday there were downed trees on OR 43 near the Sellwood Bridge, causing a road closure for several hours.

This was in addition to the closure of the Macadam exit off I-5 due to a landslide covered in my post yesterday. Day 3 and this exit is still closed.

MP 299.23

I-5, I-405 South Interchange
Estimated delay under 20 minutes
Comments: The NB I-5 Exit 299 ramp to Macadam is closed due to land slide, use caution. Ramps Affected.
Public Contact: ODOT/TMOC Portland
Incident #: 121526
Last Updated: 01/20/2012 08:04 am
*****Update as of Friday morning*****
The Macadam off-ramp from I-5 is now OPEN.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Aftermath of the storm

Well, the "big storm" came and went.  It started snowing in the South Waterfront around 9pm last  night, and tapered off in the middle of the night.
Elizabeth Caruthers Park around 11:00pm
We did see the a little bit of the same slip-sliding silliness of 2008 on Gaines St heading up to Macadam and also on Curry St coming down from Macadam.  At 4:00 am the snow was already melting some, although I saw one poor guy stuck on the side of the road halfway up Gaines.  Those trying to get up the streets in Lair Hill were also experiencing the same difficulties.
Gaines St between Moody & Macadam
Although there were a number of snow-related problems in the hills and outer areas, the biggest impact in our neck of the woods seemed to be from a "minor landslide" on the I-5 exit to Macadam. The Macadam off-ramp was closed all day while repairs took place. As of 5:30pm, the right lane is now open, but the exit ramp is still closed.
Cleanup of landslide on Macadam

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Speaking of snow...

Do you remember the Winter Storm/Arctic Blast of 2008

This video, filmed by South Waterfront resident Bob Cronk, went viral, getting 227K+ views on YouTube. It was featured on CNN and various news channels across the country.

Arctic Blast 2008 is a great conversation starter, by the way. If you ever find yourself at a Portland cocktail party with nothing to say, just ask your neighbor if they were around for the big storm of 2008. It works every time.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Grimm Episode 8 Portland filming locations

And your gratuitous Portland Bridge Footage of the Week is the.......Hawthorne Bridge!

Grimm Episode 8 "Game Ogre"
A synopsis of this week's episode: "A string of brutal murders leads Nick and Hank to a man who recently escaped prison."
Aired: Friday, Jan. 13, 9/8c

Guess what? That "man who recently escaped prison" is a big ogre, and that big ogre is actually a local boy. According to The Columbian
"Eric Edelstein, 34, a Vancouver native and Hollywood actor, guest-starred as the supernatural ogre in the episode “Game Ogre” on Friday’s episode of “Grimm,” ..."

The opening scene brings us the first murder of the episode, in the home of a local official named Logan Patterson. Apparently his character attended "Camas School of Law", as the diploma prominently displayed on the wall states. Huh?

Next we find the big ogre hanging out in his car, drinking, and throwing a severed hand into the river along the Eastside Esplanade, SE side under the Hawthorne Bridge.

More Portland locations:
  • Back to the Police Station
  • Raid on apartment complex murder scene (inside)

Mary Robinson's house - the scene of another murder 
- located @ 2925 NW Raleigh St, Portland OR
- this is next door to Adalind's mom's house @ 2939 NW Raleigh (from Episode 17)

Friday, January 13, 2012

Gibbs & OHSU construction round-up

We aaaaalmost have touchdown on the Gibbs St pedestrian bridge.  Work was going on all night this week to add the final bridge span over I-5. (You may have noticed some late-night traffic from Macadam being diverted through the neighborhood.)
I5 overpass
East side at OHSU CHH - Moody Ave
West side at Lair Hill

Thursday, January 12, 2012

FTA & Burgers in the South Waterfront

1. Mayor Sam visited the South Waterfront today along with Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff and cohorts, to check out the Streetcar and Moody Ave project.

Story from the BizJournal: 
FTA leader lauds South Waterfront development
"Rogoff said Obama officials believe Portland can set examples for other places that could add streetcars. Those cities include Atlanta, St. Louis and Washington, D.C.
“It’s not just jobs that we’re excited about, it’s the way you brought about this development,” he said, pointing to the new life sciences center site. “Oregon Health & Science University will add thousands of jobs to this space that, before, was abandoned.”"


2. We are getting a burger joint. Little Big Burger announced plans to open a store in the South Waterfront. Watch out Subway, you are in for some competition!

Urban Works Blog
OregonLive story 
Added Feb. 9, 2012 
Added Feb. 9, 2012

January at the Food Carts

Missing Rip City? If you frequent the South Waterfront food carts, you may have noticed that Rip City Grill has been closed down since the holiday season. Clint is on his annual vacation. Not to worry, RCG will be back up and running Feb. 1.

Big News: Walking down the Food Cart Docks today, we found that Taste of a Gyro is no longer our "neighborhood Greek spot" and no longer serving gyros!  They are now serving $1.50 tacos and $5 burritos. Apparently, the price of gyro meat has risen unexpectedly, forcing them to make a drastic shift in menu. No word on a new name yet; until then, the sign says "Taste of ..... Food".  If you are a fan of his famous "I'm Sorry" sauce, you can still get it with your tacos, now with a little Mexican flair.

Next in line: Local Motive appears to be building a loyal following of local seafood fans. Wednesday's special included Wild Mushroom Risotto Balls stuffed with bay shrimp and Tillamook vintage white cheddar for $2. How can you resist?! Check out their Facebook page for details on daily specials, such as this posted today:
"Super Special!!! For tomorrow and Friday, we will be offering a 1/4 lb hazelnut/panko-encrusted Halibut Burger with a side for $8. Served on a locally baked como bun with lettuce and our homemade Tartar sauce. ALSO - we have been waiting to find the right one, but... we officially have gluten-free bread to offer!!!!"

Phone: 503 - 917 - 9292
Thai is back: And finally, I was happy to see Let's Eat Thai Food back this week, after a brief closure last week due to a family emergency. Everyone is doing better now, by the way. Judging by their lunchtime traffic, business seems to be going strong, due to regular customers from OHSU and the neighborhood. Take-out customers dominate, but there were still a few brave souls eating outside in the January wind and cold. Hey, but it is a dry cold!
Call for order: 503 - 516 - 9297

Monday, January 2, 2012

South Waterfront Photos of 2011

South Waterfront in July 2011, from the Tram

January is a typical time for looking back and looking forward, introspection and of course, making resolutions. In this spirit, I have compiled a review of some of the notable South Waterfront events and favorite photos taken in 2011.

From the Tram part 2

As always, I'm open to submissions. If you have any favorite photos or memories from this past year, please drop me a line. I will gladly include them! Email me: sowablog @

As for resolutions, I'm still thinking about that one!

OHSU Bike Valet opens July 2011
I love the year-round colors of Elizabeth Caruthers Park - photo from Summer 2011
New event in the park - June 10, 2011
Kayaking in the Summer

Taken on one of many walks over to the Food Carts
Opening of the amazing Let's Eat Thai Food cart

"Grimm" filming the Streetcar flash mob in the South Waterfront

Movie night in the park

Groundbreaking ceremony for the new OUS building
Concerts in the Park