18 thoughts on “Broadway Bridge, 1946

  1. In photos dated 1952 they have totally redone the east end of the Broadway bridge. They rerouted Interstate Avenue to go under the Broadway bridge approaches instead of having an intersection there.

  2. The area looked much the same ten years later, when I’d often ride my bike from my home in the Mt. Tabor area to the west ramp of the Steel Bridge to watch trains.

  3. Mike between the years 1948 and late 1951 the Oregon highway Division completed a link from SW Harbor Drive and N. Interstate Ave. On the west side an on approach from NW Everett to the Steel bridge was built, in addition to on and off ramps from the bridge to Harbor Drive. On the east of the Steel bridge new approaches were built, and the connection to Interstate Ave. was was constructed taking traffic under the east end of the Broadway bridge..

  4. Rob Nob it took me a minute to find the Rainier Beer sign in front of Union Station since it is viewed from behind, so in looking for a frontal view on Vintage Portland I found a June 1948 sign for “Alt Heidelberg Beer” had replaced it. Alt Heidelberg sign VP photo August 23, 2010

  5. Back when Portland was still an important seaport, transhipment center, corporate and divisional headquarters of many large corporations. Also 3rd wealthiest city on the West Coast. Look at it today, how the mighty have fallen. It makes me want to cry because I loved it and planned to live my entire life in it. After living for over 65 years in it I could see where it was going and moved out of it 7 years ago.

  6. The East side was a busy neighborhood, full of homes, shops, and businesses. much different 20 years later.

  7. This is 10 years before my time , but as a kid in the 60’s the whole Portland waterfront was a fascinating place to explore , fish , and play.

  8. Fond memories there. Early 99s, I was Electrician working in Union Station.
    Sadly before a camera in my pocket. I’ve been in the Clocktower and platform behind the “Go By Train” sign and through out the attic which is huge.

  9. Fond memories there. Early 99s, I was Electrician working in Union Station.
    Sadly before a camera in my pocket. I’ve been in the Clocktower and platform behind the “Go By Train” sign and through out the attic which is huge.

  10. @Old Portlander
    Portland as a shipping port essentially ended with the advent of larger container ships which are unable to access the Columbia river. Mergers of regional companies into multinationals have decreased the regions home offices. BlitzWeinhard, Tektronix, Freightliner, Hyster have all been gobbled up. Conway trucking (Freightways) and Nike are headquartered here. The area isn’t doing too badly considering the relatively high income taxes on corporate officers. Washington and Idaho tax structures appeal to the decision makers.

  11. lots to love here…the little tug that could pulling raft upstream; covered passenger sheds at Union Station; pre Memorial Coliseum days…

  12. I love the efficient movement of goods – and people. The ships could come right up next to the tracks to drop off/pick up cargo. No highways filled with semis. Even the streets here have light traffic for midday. No parking problem – even in front of the station. City buses would drop you right by the front door. My grandparents and great aunts never owned a car. They were used to efficient streetcars, buses and train service to take them where they wanted to go.

  13. This photo is loaded!

    First, it’s amazing to see the handcrafted home-filled blocks of former Albina, some with secret waterfront trails trodden down the slope across the tracks to the shore. Originally affluent residences, the only survivor in sight is the Bekins Building, a testament to brick, still providing self-storage where the Eliot and Lloyd neighborhoods kiss across N. Broadway. These historical names make an odd marriage–Rev. Thomas Eliot, Oregon exemplar and animal lover, and Ralph Lloyd, California dreamer and oil baron. In 1946, this area–still flippantly known as (Ben) Holladay’s Addition for Portland’s notorious transportation baron–had been growing in ethnic diversity for decades. In 1946, between the WW2 victory and Vanport Flood, it was poised to become a vibrant community, an “Albina” reborn with a new affluence in music and American culture.

    Holladay’s Addition:

    Ben Holladay:

    Thomas Eliot:

    Ralph Lloyd:


    Imagine all that change in such a small area and short time, not to mention future freeways, hospital, and stadiums, nor millennia of indigenous history. Although the Coliseum and Rose Quarter begat many beloved memories, it’s sad to see the seas of cement we have poured. It makes one wonder–not only the waterfront parking lots by the Coliseum, but the UPS lot by Union Station–how tortured yet valuable those properties must be.

    In today’s photo, I like seeing the lone locomotive looking to link with the freight cars down track, the tug boat tethering the timber raft, the train station’s slender Tuscan tower. (I can’t help but hum “Conjunction Junction” when I see that rail yard.) The black Broadway bridge, not yet red, is 33 years into its unbroken reign as the world’s longest “Rall-type bascule bridge”. Less lamented is the loss of the Lovejoy Ramp viaduct, and less botched was the residential redesign of the westside waterfront. Apparently, the ghastly grain elevators came after today’s photo, despite the downsizing of Portland’s shipping industry.

    Like I said, this photo is loaded…with our past and our potential.

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