Sandy at 12th

Here are a couple of views of Sandy Blvd at Burnside separated by nine years: 1977 and 1986. A bevy of real estate billboards entertained drivers as they sat idling at this notoriously confusing intersection.

Sadly, on this corner now stands a hideously overwrought and poorly executed mixed-use building: The Linden. Designed by LA firm, KTGY, it was designed as a 55+ community on land owned by Portland Foursquare. Apparently the siren call of the market and associated profit proved too tempting and it ended up yet another overpriced development.


5 thoughts on “Sandy at 12th

  1. I had hopes that the Linden would have turned out better (have some more architectural merit, better retail spaces) and contributed more to the intersection as I was living and working nearby when the project happened. Alas, it was not to be. You nailed it: the whole thing is off-putting.


    • I hear you Jens. My frustration is that this building is on a very prominent corner and we will all suffer from its unsightly appearance. Density, especially here is warranted. On a positive note, it was designed with an eye towards energy efficiency and has a lovely rooftop space.


  2. Little Known Fact: This amazingly crazy intersection did not exist until the current Burnside Bridge was constructed in 1928. Sandy had ended at NE 16th, but was extended down to SE 7th to provide a direct link to the Burnside and the other bridges to the south. The City has tinkered with the design ever since due to ongoing safety issues.


    • That is a really interesting point to remember Lance. Nothing short of amazing what was accomplished in the way of building the street grid. The widening of Burnside and consequent arcades, the demolition of the Portland Hotel for surface parking and the gutting of whole swaths of the city to allow construction of the Minnesota Freeway. For better or worse, none of this could happen today.


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