01 September 2005

[pdx_cartography] Urban Renewal, by Thomas Brothers Maps

Dig, if you will, two pictures. One on the right, one on the left.

They are both the same page out of two Thomas Guides. The left is a bit of page 566 of the 2005 book; the right is the same page of the 2006 book. The area at the center of each is the area we all knew and tolerated as the old Columbia Villa.

Now, as everyone well knows, over the past two years, the Villa has been cleared off to make way for a new subdivision, completely new houses, new streets, everything, called New Columbia. The property is owned by the Housing Authority of Portland, and both the past and present developments are, at least in part, meant to provide housing to those the economy left behind, aaand I'm digressing again.

Anyway! Take a moment to click on, enlarge, and enjoy the 2005 map. Note particularly the Villa, marked by the lazy curves of N Woolsey Ct, N Trenton Pl, and N Woolsey Avenue (labelled south of N Houghton Street, it's the left side of the loop with the little red '9100' (the approximate address block at that point) on. Got it? Good.

Now, enlarge the 2006 map. Right where the Villa was in the 2005 book, gaze upon...absolutely nothing. There are streets there; go to the New Columbia web site via the link two paragraphs above and they have some nifty PDFs that give you an idea of the layout. But the street names seem a closely guarded secret. And Thomas Brothers (actually, Rand McNally these days) didn't even bother to find out.

So, if you live in New Columbia, and have one of the nice new units, either buying or renting, congrats. Brand spanking new housing in good condition on the Peninsula is hard to come by.

But if you want a delivery, a pizza, a taxi...you better get out a pencil and paper, and be prepared to draw 'em a map.


stan said...

LOL, I actually did deliver pizza there for a couple of months in 1992 :)

Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis said...

Well, it's a whole new ballgame out there now. Gone are the wide curves of the streets and the prim but long-in-the-tool WWII surplus housing.

Now it's got all this manufactured "Main Street" ambiance that you just know is going to be absolutely ruined when any actual people move in.

I really rue the day the first people call for cabs in that area. It's gonna be brutal.