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New waterfront condo comes with trail extension

Posted by on August 3rd, 2009 at 1:55 pm

New piece of Willamette Greenway Trail-5

Waterfront Pearl condo with new trail section.
(Photos © J. Maus)

The new Waterfront Pearl condominium just north of the Broadway Bridge might be in a world of hurt financially, but it also boasts a nice new piece of riverfront trail.

The new section of the Willamette Greenway Trail built as part of the condo project begins just south of the Portland Police horse stable, where NW 9th meets NW Naito. A sign near the Naito sidewalk leads you to the riverfront. The new trail is much wider and smoother than other trail sections in that area and it comes with two large lookout areas with benches.

New piece of Willamette Greenway Trail-1

A sign points the way.
New piece of Willamette Greenway Trail-2

Looking south at Broadway Bridge.

With this new section of trail, you can now ride (or walk) south from NW 9th all the way to the Steel Bridge (where you can weave your way onto the more well-known riverfront path in Waterfront Park).

New piece of Willamette Greenway Trail-3

Hopefully, someday the trail will extend even further north (and get some much-needed improvements to existing sections). There seems to be plenty of right-of-way near the mounted Police horse stable property, and just north of that, the PDC has plans to redevelop the old Centennial Mills property (although last time I checked, that project is on the back-burner).

Eventually, this trail might even become part of the North Portland extension of the Willamette Greenway Trail. Maybe City planners and engineers can figure out how to add a bike facility to the Fremont Bridge? Now that would make for some nice loop opportunities.

(If you ride out and explore this, there are some excellent blackberry picking opportunities on the river side of the trail, just south of the new segment!).

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  • Jenn August 3, 2009 at 2:24 pm

    I just discovered this while running last week, very cool!!!

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  • peejay August 3, 2009 at 3:26 pm

    Blackberry picking? I loved that patch when I lived in NW, but I always followed the one important rule of urban blackberry picking: waist-high and above!

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  • carlos August 3, 2009 at 3:33 pm

    It’s to bad this section of the trail is only a block long. With the Police horse stable on one side and a narrow zig zag path on the other side, the functionality of this path suffers. It almost seems like the developers of the condos just south of these built their section of the trail in hopes to discourage bicycle use.

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  • Jonathan Maus (Editor) August 3, 2009 at 3:43 pm


    I agree. If our region (Metro, City of Portland, etc..) ever wants this trail to be a legitimate public trail, it will have to be vastly improved. Right now it almost feels like you’re on private property… and I’m sure most of the condo owners would prefer to keep it that way.

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  • Q`ztal August 3, 2009 at 4:00 pm

    So is this going to be legally part of the public path or is it going to remain under the control of the condo owners so that they can close it when ever they want to?

    I seem to remember, but can’t find the article, about a section of the Willamette Greenway Trail in to downtown that the adjacent property owners wanted to shutdown or something?

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  • Oliver August 3, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    It’s absolutely to keep people out. In London there is miles of paved riverfront path @ canary wharf with wall’s/fences separating each development.

    There are folks cut from a certain cloth who find it negligent on the part of the developer to encourage public thoroughfare.

    It remains up to the public to pressure its elected officials to ensure that the wealthy are unable to block access to public space, effectively annexing it to the private property in question. All this tax free / publicly subsidized to boot

    In many places this battle is effectively over, and our freedom to enjoy our state is already lost to us.

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  • Dabby August 3, 2009 at 6:11 pm

    I have been relaxing down there for many, many years, and have always wanted to get that weird water structure thing working.

    It was in fact right there where I crashed myself into the side of a building to avoid knocking Bud Clark into the river.

    The blackberries are good, people poop in the bushes, and the swimming possibilities were looking good….

    Nothing says swimmin’ hole like a big sunken crane to dive off of.

    And then Hoffman figured out the water issue… or did they?

    The real question here is what is being done with the ship sections that were dug up?

    Are they being put back in the dirt? Or are they just going to sit and rot, like most of the Lovejoy columns have been doing. (Just down the street from this location is where they are stored)

    There is a serious, emotional, messenger connection to the area down there.

    Good to hear the condos are failing, bad to see they were built in the first place

    If they knock the condo’s down, what will be left?

    Swimmin’ Hole!

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  • joe adamski August 3, 2009 at 10:15 pm

    It is my understanding that the Willamette Greenway trail has been codified and accepted by Council. Even so, nothing will happen until that property is redeveloped. When a new development is proposed,the trail alignment is part of the project. While the developers can’t get out of it, they can finagel design and location. Industrial development is a more complex issue. Should river dependency, such as docks,etc be required, a trail is not always required. However, condo developmets are required to include a trail, some actually make good effort for a well designed trail. And those trails are public right of way, not ‘private property’.

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  • Michael M. August 4, 2009 at 11:29 am

    The Fields Neighborhood Park is supposed to have a neat-looking MUP bridge that will connect it to Centennial Mills. I wonder if that project is now on the back burner, along with PDC’s plans for redevelopment of Centennial Mills. Last time I checked out The Fields, it was pretty much just a field, but plenty of dogs were using it as an off-leash park for their owners.

    There’s a PDF of the conceptual design here.

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