South Portland and Waterfront, 1938

An exceptionally clear image of the area between Duniway Park and the Ross Island Bridge in South Portland in 1938. The 4th Avenue (Barbur Blvd.) extension was complete but Harbor Drive (and I-5) were still in the future.

A2010-001.91   Aerial view of SW waterfront 1938(City of Portland Archives)

9 thoughts on “South Portland and Waterfront, 1938

  1. Wow, I wonder what the story behind that proposed Kelly Avenue diagonal was. Great picture; I always love the South Portland area ones since 1) I work right in this area and 2) it seems like one of the most (if not THE most) controversial projects ever done in Portland to this day.

  2. They should have done that to Kelly!! The traffic from the Ross Island Bridge up the hill to 405 is terrible and it’s because of those stupid curves on Arthur. I can’t tell you how many times I redesigned the streets in my head and it looked something like this. Also a fly-over ramp from the Ross Island Bridge straight to 405 would be AMAZING.

  3. Is there a technical reason why they didn’t install a flyover off the Ross Island? Perhaps the bridge isn’t high enough for a ramp to clear the tops of buildings? Or the traffic wasn’t great enough in the 60s/70s to justify such major construction? Or it would have obscured views? There has to be some justification for that I5N/Ross Island Whittaker/Kelly St interchange, which just beggars belief.

  4. @KLR Why there was no consideration of a 405/Ross Island Bridge ramp is Most likely because they were planning for the Mt. Hood Freeway to carry US 26 onto the Marquam Bridge and then over I-405 to the Sunset Highway. Also a new, high-capacity (or twin span) Ross Island Bridge was considered off-and-on as part of the Mt. Hood Freeway, but just carrying local or downtown-bound traffic across the river.

    There are some pics here, but hard to see:

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