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Thread: West Coast trip

  1. #1
    OH....IO Hink's avatar
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    West Coast trip

    My fellow students and I will be traveling to Portland, Oregon; Seattle, Washington; and Vancouver, BC this September to see the sights, and learn something (or drink). I was hoping that someone from any of those cities could give me some ideas as to what we MUST see, or if there are any tours, or the like that we should do while there. Since many of us are looking at graduate school, or are already in it, we are looking to talk with professors at the Universities surrounding these cities as well. (Any one we should stop at?)

    Any help that would give me some place to tell these people to go. This is our yearly trip and we try to make it as educational as possible, but other things are always good to know about as well. Last year we went to Charleston, SC, and Savannah, GA, and the year prior we went to NYC. Any help would be great. Thanks.
    A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. -Douglas Adams

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    I am a big fan of the Hood River Fruit Loop as an incredibly scenic drive, an outstanding example of agritourism development, and a chance to observe the rural countryside and small towns.

    Astoria, Oregon is a nice place to visit.

    Go Ahead and see Tacoma. It has turned around quite a bit from when I was first there in 1992. Even then it had nice neighborhoods, but now the city is working on polishing its gritty image.

    Take a ride on one of the ferries in Seattle.

    If you are going to see a mountain, make it Ranier. Hood comes in second. Forget about St. Helens.
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  3. #3
    Cyburbian plankton's avatar
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    First of all, I must comment on your location: "Indiana by school, Ohio by heart"....you mean there's a difference (please forgive the slight by a former michigander)

    So, you're coming to the great Pac NW......

    Portland has some superb neighborhoods. A few of my favorites are in the Southeast part of town along SE Belmont around 30th or so (great redevelopment, adaptive reuse (old dairy manufacturing plant), and in-fill projects) and the close-in (near the Willamette River) Sellwood neighborhood. It almost helps if you get lost in these areas as you inevitably will stumble across something, someplace, or someone that is unlike you've ever seen before.

    Some people are annoyed by this area (too trendy, posh, or whatever) but I really like the Nob Hill area in Northwest Portland (NW 23rd area). Very interesting and well-maintained housing stock; lots of good northwest food and drink. Check out nearby Washington Park for nice trails, views, and gardens.

    I second Cardinal's notion of venturing to Hood River and Astoria. Both cities are worth seeing and demonstrate how small, historic, downtown areas can benefit from stringent urban growth policies. (I am certain that Astoria would be a mere shell of itself today if the surrounding hillsides were allowed to be developed into ranchettes, mcmansions, etc., and the highways (more) littered with strip commercial development) While traveling to Astoria, do take note of the superb land use planning that is occurring in the host county.

    Oh yea, ride the streetcar (to or from Portland State University (land use/regional planning programs)) and Max (light rail). PSU is located in a nice treed setting (Park Blocks) right in downtown P-town.

    There are great pics and previous discussions of Portland on this site -- if you haven't done so already, make sure to check them out.

    As for Seattle and 'Couver, I'll have to leave those to others that know the areas much better than I.

    Enjoy!!

  4. #4
    OH....IO Hink's avatar
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    Thanks for the good thoughts.

    Since our trip is coming soon (Sept. 22) I was hoping there were some Seattle and Vancouver buffs, who know everything that is happening in those two cities? Any help?
    A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. -Douglas Adams

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