Thursday, April 23, 2009

A Floor of One's Own in the South Waterfront

Up until about three months ago, I was living alone in a house that sat on a acre of land by itself. I'd never lived alone before--let alone in a place with no neighbors. The 14 months I lived there was a rewarding experience--I really enjoyed singing at all hours and having loud parties without worrying about disturbing anyone.

One night when I was driving on I-5, I saw a few scattered lights on in the residential buildings of the South Waterfront and thought, "Those people must live sort of like I do." From a distance, the newly minted neighborhood seemed largely uninhabited.

But when I went down to walk among the buildings and meet the people who live there for this story that came out in today's Oregonian, I found that it's a very lively community, with restaurants full of people (in between vacant spaces, of course). But, while an older building may have a wait list, some residents do or recently did have entire floors to themselves.

Despite the fact that, at least in my social circles, the neighborhood is referred to with what could be described as distrust as best and mockery at worst, I didn't speak to anyone who doesn't like living there. The only negative comment I heard was about the portrayal of the South Waterfront in the media.

1 comment:

  1. I just biked through there for the first time the other evening, and it was a beautiful evening and it seemed like everyone that was there was lost or something, like they had taken a wrong turn. I really don't like the atmosphere there. It's really not Portlandy. It's like a weird Houston neighborhood or something from Las Vegas. I look forward to reading your article.