Shocker: City planned to gut Hollywood for massive interchange

These slides were missfiled in my collection, but take a gander at this horrific plan to gut the Hollywood District for a massive grade separated interchange at Sandy and 39th.

Though undated, I estimate this is from the late 30s. Old enough for Steigerwald Dairy bottle to be standing and for traffic congestion to be a thing.

Thank god they decided not to go forward with the plan, however the rendering is pretty refined indicating that they were far enough along in the process to be pumping out visuals for the public. It is shocking to remember how willing to destroy their neighborhoods for ease of traffic people were. Sort of reminds me of how we treat the internet today.

The accompanying aerial clearly shows little traffic, so this must have been purely anticipatory destruction. Even better!

Above Hollywood, 1977

Here we see the weirdness that was 39th at Sandy Blvd before construction of the Metropolitan Area Express triggered a reconfig of the area. As we celebrate MAX on its 30th birthday and remember the excitement of the breakthrough it symbolized, few will recall that a significant portion of the funds diverted from the Mt. Hood Freeway were actually spent on freeway construction. I-84 and its associated interchanges from Lloyd to I-205 was nearly completely rebuilt due to the project’s dedicated ROW and clearance issues with existing overpasses through that area.

Also timely to note how much things have changed in how TriMet finances these mega-projects. Back in ’86 when the original Eastside MAX was budgeted, the Democratically controlled federal government kicked in an incredible 83% of money. Contrast this with the scant 50% for Orange’s massive $1.46 billion pricetag.

Indeed, something has changed. And more change is coming January 20. Unfortunately it doesn’t appear something worth celebrating.

McLoughlin Blvd, 1977

It is nice to see that we are not unique in living during a time of poor roadside landscaping. I am surprised to see this in such disrepair having assumed it was built out in the early 70s.

Downtown Portland, 1980

A typically chilly and damp January is the backdrop for this series of ariels of downtown Portland in 1980.

Surface lots, yellow cars and scant construction are in evidence. This was the end of a stagnate era for downtown development but behind scenes, the groundwork had been laid for a successful urban renaissance.