You could be anywhere. So why does it feel like nowhere?

No Portland neighborhood better exhibits the unlovely monster building style currently remaking our faire city than old NW. Not the Pearl, where the axe fell some time ago. The real action now is west of 405. Old, gently rotting, mildew-besotted single story buildings are being plowed under, and in their place arise godzilla fortresses of glass, steel, and brick facade.

The results are pretty ugly. But it is going to get much, much, MUCH uglier before it’s done. You know all those acres of parking lot all around the old Con-Way HQ next to the highway? Something’s coming.

Here’s a great example of a monster building on the corner of NW 23rd and Savier.

Surrounded.  The lovely old Tavern & Pool meets genero steel Tudor.
Surrounded. The lovely old low slung Tavern & Pool meets genero steel Tudor.

The mark of the beast:  Brick facade, glass, steel - and franchises.
The mark of the beast: Brick facade, glass, steel – and franchises.

Welcome to the new urbanist ghetto.
Welcome to the new urbanist ghetto. In 50 or 100 years, will walking tours of Portland be stopping here to marvel at our vision?