Portlandia, 1985

Tomorrow marks the 33rd anniversary of the installation of Portlandia on her Portland Building perch above the sidewalk on October 6, 1985. Today’s photo is of Portlandia getting transported to downtown via the river, 1985.


City of Portland (OR) Archives, Portlandia coming down the river, A2010-011, 1985.


View this image in Efiles by clicking here.

20 thoughts on “Portlandia, 1985

  1. Portlandia is beautiful. The Portland building is not. Many of us in the design professions had serious doubts. I don’t recall that it was submitted to the Portland Design Commission for review. Frank Ivancie, then a city commissioner favored it because of lower cost, not for design. Philip Johnson a significant architect was the dominant juror. He and Michael Graves the architect were friends in New York. Johnson was the influential advocate for the building. We will likely never know the
    criteria and politics why this design was selected.

  2. …plus, she should be on the other side of the building, so she has a chance to be seen and can be above the park….

  3. When the retrofit is finished, I hope they take down the trees so she can be seen from the street. Supposedly all the public buildings in that area were supposed to be facing the park as sort of a public square. Then they built the Portland Bldg with its butt (parking garage doors) facing the park. Ruined the whole concept. Sad.

  4. I love Portlandia and the Portland building. I may be in the minority, but there are those of us that do appreciate it.

  5. The revamp will at least rework the park-facing side of the building, with a new 2nd floor lobby/seating area with large windows overlooking the park. The loading dock will be less prominent.

  6. She should never have been placed hidden away on this ugly building.
    With her trident as a water theme, She should be down on the waterfront for all to see. She could even be seen from I-5 at that location.

  7. I appreciated the video, Bob Richardson, and watching 4K time-lapse video of a familiar place can be fascinating. Will your camera will be “locked down” to record the entire process of remodeling and renovation of the building? I look forward to watching the completed video. Almost like time travel. 🙂

  8. Thanks – I do have a permanent camera installation running for the entire project. (As long as the host building lets me stay there!) I check on it weekly … in fact, today I need to go swap memory cards.

  9. PS… I am currently unaffiliated with the building revamp but I did pitch a proposal to them, so I know a few tangential things about the project.

  10. The reason the parking entrance is on the park side of the building is because that is the low side, and the parking is in the basement. Building the additional ramps that would be necessary if the parking entrance was in a different place would have called for a much higher budget.

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