portland neighborhood guide, wilsonville

Wilsonville is a true suburbe between farmland and city

Wilsonville Oregon is along I-5 just past Tualatin heading south, along the Willamette River, and is close to I 205, setting it up as a good commuter town. The MAX commuter train, The Wes, ends it’s route in Wilsonville. Wilsonville is on the edge of the high density Portland Metro area, and the gorgeous farmland to the south in the Willamette Valley. It has grown so much over the past 10 years, it is mind boggling! There are a lot of new housing developments, the largest being Villebois. Houses are very close together, but built around a town area with amenities, parks, daycare, and school. This has become the model for many newer west suburb neighborhoods. There is also another huge planned retirement neighborhood, Charbonneau, which was built around a golf course. Both these neighborhoods have mixed housing, single family, condos and townhouses, and Charbonneau also has apartments. There is no cute little downtown area, this is fully and totally a suburb. The older houses have big yards, some even have acres, but much of the large acreage is being opened up for development as the urban growth boundary stretches out. It has had the Tree City USA designation for 19 years because of it’s devotion to keeping greenspaces, parks and planting trees!

Once a small farming community, Wilsonville in the West Portland Suburbs is now a fast-growing city of over 23,768. It has a diverse economy including high-tech industry,  warehousing and distribution like Xerox, Mentor Graphics, Flir Systems, Sysco, Orepac, and many others. Wilsonville has become an economic engine for the region, but the city has also thought about how it wanted the town to be laid out, in a way that will draw families and give them a good quality of life.

Wilsonville Oregon is at the very beginning of what is known as the Willamette Valley- where the Willamette Valley and Tualatin Valleys run together. There are older homes on acreage, farms, new developments and lots of condo and townhouse developments – so there is something for everyone. If you go into the Stafford Road area, it runs into West Linn and Tualatin – and the houses get pretty expensive because of the area.

Parks in Wilsonville Oregon

Boones Ferry Park is located on the Willamette River, and includes the historic Tauchman House, boones ferry landingwhere the old ferry operator lived to let people on the ferry to go across the river.  Along the Willamette River adjacent to the park,  there is river access via a small, rocky path.

Graham Oaks Nature Park: The 250 acre park features three miles of trails allowing visitors to explore several habitats in a single park. Cyclists and joggers can take the paved Tonquin Trail, while a spur trail leads to a wetland overlook, and Coyote Way meanders through young oak woodlands. For a bit of shade, follow the Legacy Creek Trail through a rich conifer forest

Tranquil Park is a neighborhood greenway with a local access trail. The park provides neighbors a wooded site containing a walking path and also serves as a visual green contrast to the built environment, contributing to the character of the surrounding neighborhood.

There are also quite a few Community Garden spaces that people can rent.

You can find a link to all the parks, descriptions, and pictures here

History of  Wilsonville Oregon

Wilsonville Oregon was originally founded because the Ferry came across the Willamette River right there at Boones Landing. It was officially dubbed Wilsonville in 1880 and incorporated in 1969.

Via Wikipedia:

Alphonso Boone, of Daniel Boone, settled in what would later become Wilsonville in 1846 and established the Boones Ferry across the Willamette River in 1847. The ferry gave rise to the community of Boones Landing, which eventually grew into Wilsonville. Originally, the area was part of what became Yamhill County, but was transferred to the current Clackamas County in 1855. The first post office was established in 1876 with the name, Boones Ferry.

Wilsonville Oregon became the name of the community on June 3, 1880, named after the first postmaster, Charles Wilson. That same year the first school, Wilsonville Grade School, was opened as a single-room building. By 1890, the railroad had reached town and the community contained depot, several hotels, a saloon, a tavern, a bank, and several other commercial establishments. In 1897, the twelve school districts in the vicinity of Wilsonville up to Lake Oswego merged to create a single district.[12] A railroad bridge was built across the river for the Oregon Electric Railway beginning in 1906. The bridge was completed the next year and service from Wilsonville south to Salem began in 1908.

A new Methodist church was built in the community in 1910, which was used until 1988 and is still standing. Two years later, a new two-room school replaced the old one-room school, which in turn was replaced by a modern school in the mid 1900s, all on the same property. In 1939, the wooden trestle part of the railroad bridge across the Willamette caught fire and burned. Boones Ferry was decommissioned after the Boone Bridge opened in 1954 carrying what was then the Baldock Freeway, and is today Interstate 5.