"In this country we (architects) are inevitably kicked between fashion and dead tradition." n
Belluschi in a 1931 letter to Frank Lloyd Wright
Portland's older residential neighborhoods were mostly established before World War II by families eager to raise their children away from downtown Portland's high ratio of inebriated men. These neighborhoods feature traditional residential designs in a variety of styles that follow the basic template of large front windows, front porches, and a garage often recessed or hidden behind the house.
Limited pressures on the Portland housing markets have helped to keep most of these neighborhoods intact, leaving the equivalent of small villages throughout the city. Interesting high-density homes and condominiums have begun to sneak into many half-lots and even backyards in these neighborhoods.
Only about 5 percent of the contemporary homes built in the Portland area are designed by architects. Developers and contractors create the majority, and as a result, the finer sensitivities of home design are more likely to be offset by profit margins. Thus, while 2,000 square feet provides enough living room for a family of four, house-size inflation has led to any number of McMansions (over-sized mansions of bastardized architectural form) mushrooming throughout the hills of the Northwest and the Portland area in general. These "Street of Dreams" spin-offs will be justly derided by future Portlanders for their wastefulness and tastelessness, so get a head start on the mockery today.Less Text