Ever squinted your eyes and tried to imagine something that's only in your head? That's how it was for those of us who looked over the railyards and abandoned warehouses of inner northwest Portland some 10 years ago. Rundown and dilapidated, it was a sight that even the best of us squinters had trouble overcoming.
And yet, slowly, a largely forgotten part of Portland's past became an urban icon of living unlike anything the country had ever seen.
A unique blend of verve and vibrancy, with more than a passing nod to Portland's uncommon brand of originality. A name emerged that captured the area's Cinderella transformation: the "Pearl".
Today, the Pearl District has earned a worldwide reputation for urban renaissance. Diverse, architecturally significant residential communities thrive here. Galleries rub shoulders with restaurants, shops open to parks, and no one has to squint anymore to see the magic that's taken hold.
The Pearl is the story of a vision come to life. It has a beginning, and a middle, but to those of us who have been lucky enough to help the Pearl take shape, there is no ending. There are transformations to come, to help this "pearl" of a place become even more: more sustainable, more livable, more inviting, more groundbreaking.
Experience this remarkable place for yourself, and help craft its next chapters. The best stories never really end, anyway…they just leave room for sequels.