NW St Helens Road & Bridge Ave, 1937

NW Bridge Avenue (right) angles off St. Helens Road on its way to meet the western approach of the St. Johns Bridge (behind us) in this 1937 image. That stone retaining wall is still there. The building on the far left (which is not the Linnton Portland Gas & Coke Company building) is no longer there. Google Maps shows a metal gate still closes off the wildly overgrown firelane seen on the far right.

(City of Portland Archives)

13 thoughts on “NW St Helens Road & Bridge Ave, 1937

  1. Looks so serene in the 1930s!

    I drive this route home occasionally, but mostly I’m on the #16 bus.

    Last month, The Oregonian had an interesting (for me, at least) article about the merges (or lack thereof) that occur on this road during rush hour. I’m of the opinion that the left lane is meant for passing slow traffic, but I was flipped off or honked at multiple times last week for doing so! 🙂


  2. & just for us semi-novices to Forest Park the gated firelane is 7A, a fella can get turned around in there for sure.

  3. BrianG,

    Fellow bus 16 commuter here (I’m the guy who always has his nose in a book). You see serenity in this picture. I see a good early Halloween pic that would be even better if the old Gasco admin building was included.

    I agree with you about the left lane on Bridge Avenue. What else would it be for?

  4. I teach in St John’s and know this route very well. Yes, so serene. You can see trees through the mist to the right of the building and a vintage car parked on the side of the road. Probably the photographers!

  5. I rode firelane 7a later on Tuesday after posting the above and was reminded that it is REALLY steep towards the top. More than half of it is not rideable. Ridge trail is a much better way into the park, but you’ve got to break the rules if you want to ride it.
    The rock “cliff” above the firelane in the photo above is now covered with English Ivy and the railing of the small fence is gone. Posts are still there though.

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