20 thoughts on “O’Bryant Square, 1973

  1. The Franklin High School band playing “Everything’s Coming Up Roses” at the park named after Portland’s first Mayor Hugh Donaldson O’Bryant during the December 6, 1973 dedication.

  2. O’Bryant Square (named after first Portland mayor) aka: “Paranoid” (or) “Paranoia Park”, “Needle Park”, “Crack Park”, has been called “a real ugly duckling” Laurie Olin and “a relic of 1970s urban design”, The Oregonian, 2007).

    I had no idea Portland still had an open elevator car park still in use in 1973; those things are wild.

    I also didn’t know that there’s an underground parking garage under this square. Sounds like there are plans to dismantle and fill-in the car park, due to leaks and other expensive problems with it, and then repurpose the square for other uses.

  3. This open square had one of the the WORST rat infestations I have ever seen in the downtown sector and the rodent problem was bad too.

  4. The park is located between SW Washington & SW Harvey Milk (Stark) at SW Park ave. and he pigeon hole parking structure was on Stark Street

  5. I am hoping that something can be salvaged from this 1970s era park. I personally enjoyed sitting in the sun on the steps in 1973 during the summer/fall after work on my way home, as it was lightly used and a welcome break in my walk. The rodents must have moved in a little later!

  6. What jumps out to me is all that daylight. I always think of it as a dark place, literally or otherwise. Claudia has certainly missed the evolution of this park.

  7. Last time I walked by it was fenced off with chain link. The park had been defaced with graffiti and was surrounded by aggressive pan handlers who needed quick money. Others were a little nicer, they were only carrying cardboard, running sign and canning. The good news is I saw no rats!

  8. Click the Columbia Building 1913 above the comments to see the building that was demolished for this park.

  9. Loved the design of this park, in it’s younger days, also the link that cody supplied, shows the areas and elevations created. Makes me sick that it has become dilapidated and infected with rodents. This is a GOOD example of ’70’s design.

  10. Interestingly the Pacific Northwest Bell (PNB) building (right side of photo) was newly constructed and actually dedicated in 1973 too. It’s called Capitol II (Capitol 1 is the old brick building alongside it); it’s still a phone company central office to this day (now CenturyLink/Lumen).

  11. So, interesting. I saw that and wondered when it went up and became a Bell building. My mother worked at PNB for 38 years in the Lincoln Building on 4th and Oak. I never even knew this one existed.

  12. The hair-dos, fur wraps, pumps, Royal Rosarians and The Pigeon Hole parking garage…it must be the ’70s! (I remember my mother parking our ’65 Buick Wildcat in The Pigeon Hole and being fascinated by it’s mechanics!)

  13. Those stacking mechanical car parks still exist in a “new form” in Portland, several Pearl District high rise apartments have a similar mechanism installed in their basement garages.

  14. I never knew that fountain was named for Donald C. Sloan. I bought my very first stocks in high school from The Donald C. Sloan Investment Brokerage. My broker was Bruce Kelly who was nice enough to to handle my tiny little $400 account at the time. 40+ years later though, it’s almost 10 million !

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