While we don’t live in the Pearl District, we’re not too far away at all. The Pearl begins east of the 405 (that’s interstate 405), around 14th avenue, and is west of the Willamette River. Burnside is the southern boundary and generally it just fizzles out north of maybe Pettygrove. The Pearl is a giant warehouse district that housed many rope factories, among other products. Today, and over the past ten years or so, the Pearl has been redeveloped, preserved and yuppie-ized in many places.
We’ll get more in depth about specific stores and restaurants (and maybe one day apartments/townhouses) in later posts but a few highlights, at least for us so far include: Rouge beer brew pub, Deschutes beer brew pub, Bridgeport beer brew pub (pictured)…are you noticing a trend? There is also the world famous Powell’s City of Books, the largest independent book store in the world. Powell’s takes up the entire block between 10th and 11th avenues as well as between Burnside and Couch. There is an extremely eclectic store called Cargo that Morgen loves, full of interesting pieces of Asian furniture, pop culture and general weirdness.
Portland’s wonderful streetcar system runs right through the middle of the Pearl traveling south down 11th (from Lovejoy) and up 10th (to Northrup). We’ve tried to take advantage of the electric streetcars whenever we can, though the Pearl is a very walkable part of town. Still, throughout most of the Pearl, the streetcar is free and encouraged.
As I said, more is coming, but this is a very brief and entirely inadequate introduction to the neighborhood directly to the east of us. We can walk there in fifteen minutes or take the streetcar in less than ten, so it’s an area we’ll be exploring and trying to take advantage of whenever the time or inclination allows us.