This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on November 17, 2006 11:43 AM. The previous post in this blog was Would that it were true. The next post in this blog is SoWhat madness explained, somewhat. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Friday, November 17, 2006

Critics without berets

If you want to read what real Portlanders think about the local architecture (as opposed to what the Shlockmeisters of the Pearl deem worthy of admiration), today's Trib has the lowdown.

Hmmm, "Schlockmeisters of the Pearl" -- sounds like a Wagner opera.

Comments (9)

Wow. That's just it, no? There are ZERO landmarks north of Burnside. One of my favorite rides in the city is the Max going down First Ave. as it goes between Burnside and Oak St. Those buildings are wonderful. You make that same ride on the streetcar through the Pearl and all I can think is Robson St. without the cool currency.

Interesting comparison, although Robson street is much more accessible, retail-wise, with a larger variety of shops than are currently in the Pearl. One of my favorite parts of Robson, since we're hijacking this thread to discuss VanCan, is the plethora of second-floor-terrace restaurants overlooking the street. Portland could use a good $2 coin....

Portland could use a good $2 coin....

The key to the dollar coin AND the two dollar coin is the clever nickname. Neither the Susan B. Anthony nor the Sacagawea coins ever got cool names like Loonie and Two-nie. Solve the nickname problem, solve the dollar coin problem.

Topic drift! In addition to the name problem, there's the size problem. The dollar coin is just too easy to mistake for a quarter. Nobody wants to do that.

The Dekum comes up big with the general public and it's always been my dream office space (even though, now, I don't need an office). I believe the correct architectural term for its style is Richardson Romanesque, after the architect H.H. Richardson.

But the unsung hero of Portland architecture is A.E. Doyle. Almost every top ten favorite building in Portland and its environs was designed by Doyle, including the central library, the Benson Hotel, the old U.S. Bank building, Meier & Frank (er, Macy's), most of the old Reed College campus and, of course, Timberline Lodge.

These are all magnificent buildings. Why can't architects come up with buildings people actually want to live, work and shop in today?

Because they work for developers who have no soul and care only about money. Creeps and crooks, for the most part.

There are ZERO landmarks north of Burnside.

Not so, IMHO. The Custom House on the North Park Blocks has always caught my eye.

"Portland is a nice place to live..."

but I wouldn't want to visit there.

To the area north of Burnside, also add the St John Bridge (it'architecture)and the building owned by NW Natural Gas at the southwest end of the St. John Bridge that is boarded up(see it from Hwy 30). It is a beautiful concrete, well portioned building, but I've heard the site is toxic.

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