University Park Neighborhood is right along the Willamette River up on a bluff overlooking the city of Portland. The north boundary is Lombard and the Portsmouth neighborhood, N Chautauqua and Arbor Lodge to the east, and the N Portland railroad cut, and Cathedral Park and St Johns to the west. It is a great neighborhood if you want something more affordable and you like the old Portland homes. There are also a lot of mid-century homes with full basements that work great for airbnb, and housing the students at the University! A lot of young families have been moving into the neighborhood too.
The neighborhood is about 12-15 blocks from the downtown area of St Johns. You are also pretty close to the St. John’s Bridge, which is an awesome short cut that goes from North Portland to downtown and NW Portland, and Forest Park Trails… plus you can head out along the Columbia River to Sauvie’s Islands farms and beaches. The MAX is a little too far to walk but you can connect to it with buses or ride your bike.
Some of the houses have sweeping views across the Willamette River and industrial area, and you can see Forest Park and Downtown. In fact if it is clear, you can see Mt Hood and all the Portland bridges silhouetted in the background. You just have to look up over and past the industrial Swan Island! The campus of the University of Portland is really pretty. And everyone walks and rides their bikes all over the area! There is a sidewalk that goes along the whole overlook, and there are always joggers, bicyclists and mothers pushing baby carriages, plus just students walking!
The University Park neighborhood got its name because the neighborhood surrounds the University of Portland. The University of Portland (UP) is a small private Catholic university located in Portland Oregon. It was founded in 1901 and has a student body of about 3,200 students. and is ranked 5th in the west for Universities-Master’s by U.S. News and World Report. It is the only school in Oregon to offer a college of arts & sciences a graduate school and schools of business education engineering and nursing.
Lombard used to be kind of a run down but it is getting better all the time and it should continue. There are a few nice restaurants and pubs mixed in with fast food and convenient stores. The houses and neighborhoods south of Lombard are usually quite nice and more expensive than the houses north of Lombard. The areas closest to the river, like Overlook, have gone up so much in value it is hard for young families or young couples to afford anything there, and the trend seems to be spreading its way up and out towards University Park. But unlike St Johns and Kenton, University Park Neighborhood does not have a cute little downtown area right in the neighborhood. They have recently built a New Seasons close by, and you can walk to St John’s downtown area. University Park Borders against Overlook and Cathedral Park and it has the University of Portland right in it’s midst. It is a beautiful old Neighborhood full of stately old homes being restored and reborn. People here love to walk and ride their bikes and the University grounds add a lot of beauty to the area.
Parks in University Park neighborhood
- Portsmouth Park has a playground soccer field and softball field.
- Columbia Park is incredible! It is over 35 acres. Part of it is in University Park. It also goes across Lombard. It was patterned after a famous park in Berlin Germany. It includes a baseball field disabled access picnic area disabled access restroom paths – paved picnic site – reservable picnic tables playground soccer field softball field tennis court – outdoor volleyball court and wading pool or water play feature.
- Portsmouth Community Garden
- University of Portland University of Portland, not really a park, but with beautiful park like grounds!
History of University Park neighborhood
University Park Neighborhood was originally 530 acre farm, which was owned by the original pioneer families. Local historian and writer Jim Speirs says much of early University Park was a German enclave partially supported by orchards. The design of Columbia Park was inspired by a park in Berlin. It was mapped out for development in 1891 after a campus was created by Methodists on the bluff and christened Portland University. Classes were held in a five-story, brick beauty, West Hall, an enduring, Romanesque-style landmark now heralded as Waldschmidt Hall. Part of the property was mapped out to be the University, the rest of the acres for the surrounding neighborhood. The church planned to sell individual lots through a realty company in University Park to finance the university, but home site sales did not sustain the institution. A financial failure for most of its brief existence, the university closed in 1900. In 1901, and Columbia University opened on the site, later renamed the University of Portland. Public transportation was installed, and industry began to develop in the area. As designers of University Park, Methodist Episcopal officials aligned streets along a northeast – southwest axis and a northwest – southeast axis in order to maximize exposure to sunlight. Streets are named using Ivy League names: Harvard, Princeton and Yale. The wide roads hold a few remaining Victorians that once housed captains of industry. Nearby are modest bungalows built for workers and college professors.
Other Important Links
The MAX and buses make public transportation really good!
Schools In Portland- people are permitted to send their children to whatever school they want within the Portland School District, as long as there is room. If the school is important to you, it is probably a good idea to check and see which school your neighborhood is assigned to- because it seems logical that the best schools will have a waiting list- and if you live there, you will be at the top! Find your school attendance area or a school site and view the boundary area using School Locator Page for: Portland Public Schools..
Read how to use the interactive map by clicking on the (Information) icon (circle with an i in the center).
School Report Cards for schools and districts in Oregon. Select (Portland SD 1J) In the District Selection Heading to view individual schools within the Portland Public School District.
You can find all kinds of All kinds of information about crime, maps, etc, Portlandmaps.com even exactly what happened where, if you just put in an address in Portland. There are lots of other things you can learn there- like census information, maps, school info, parks, environmental issues, permits on houses, nuisance complaints and taxes.