South Portland = New Official Oregon Address

south portland address change map

In spring of 2020, the City of Portland is rolling out a new official address area: South Portland. Although it’s a small area, it contains important centers for jobs and healthcare, as well as a wide range of housing. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at how South Portland came to be, what defines it, and what the future is for real estate.

Why a new South Portland address area?

In addition to Southeast, Southwest, North, Northeast and Northwest, there is now a South Portland as an official address area of the city, just south of downtown on the Willamette River. (For real estate and other purposes, we also usually refer to everything east of 82nd Ave as East Portland, but it’s not an official address area.)

The official address areas of Portland are determined by geographical dividing lines: The Willamette River, which separates the East from the West, and Burnside Street, which divides the city from north to south. When one of those dividing lines is crossed, addresses start over at 1.

Things get a bit confusing when the Willamette River bends to the west just north of downtown Portland. That’s why North Portland is northwest of Northeast, but not part of West Portland.

What defines a South Portland Address?

Map showing Southwest Portland neighborhoods. South Portland is now its own official area.

On the west, South Portland is bordered by Southwest Naito Parkway and the Tryon Creek State Natural area to the west. The Willamette river forms South Portland’s eastern border, and it is also the cause behind its designation as a new address area. Why?

South Portland lies slightly to the east of downtown because of the way the river turns. Because addresses in downtown start at 1, where the city meets the waterfront, and go up in number as they go west, that meant anything east of there had to start with 0. All the new development in South Portland has addresses starting with 0, which is confusing, especially to emergency personnel who need to act quickly. To remove the zero and differentiate these addresses from other areas of Portland, the area of South Portland was added. Going forward, the zero will be dropped from the beginning of addresses here, and streets will be designated South instead of Southwest. 

History of South Portland

Prior to being named South Portland, the area was known as Corbett Terwilliger Lair Hill, a combination of all the smaller neighborhoods it comprises, a list that also includes South Waterfront and John’s Landing. In 2006, the neighborhoods decided to group together and rebrand as South Portland neighborhood.

Many new homes and apartment buildings have been added to the neighborhood since then, especially in the formerly industrial South Waterfront area.

The South Waterfront is still under development, but it already has the most skyscrapers of any area of Portland outside of downtown and the Pearl District (for fun, check out this amazing skyscraper map of Portland). These buildings accommodate Oregon Health and Science University, a retirement and rehabilitation facility for seniors, apartments and condos. 

In 2018, Portland City Council voted to establish South Portland as a new official address area, Portland’s sixth.

Real Estate in South Portland

Most of the available housing stock in South Portland is made up of condos. Out of the 61 homes currently on the market (March 2020), 48 are condos or townhomes. There are three high-rise condo buildings in the South Waterfront neighborhood, with more scattered throughout the area. For single-family homes, there are a range of options, from St. John’s Landing bungalows to Victorian mansions on Lair Hill. 

Search all South Portland homes for sale here.

According to Zillow, the median home value in this area is $488,429, higher than the Portland median of $455,753, with a much higher price-per-square-foot ($288 vs Portland $232) reflecting the fact that most of these homes are higher-end condos. Although South Portland home values have dipped slightly in the past year, Zillow predicts that they will go up again in 2020, at a rate of 2.2%.

Are you ready to buy a South Portland home or condo, or sell and get a healthy return on your investment? Our top 1% real estate agent team is here to help you make it happen, with well over 1,000 local sales and low, 4.5% to sell max. commission. 

March 23, 2020

Stephen FitzMaurice

Stephen FitzMaurice, Realtor is a top 5% real estate agent in the U.S. and a top 1% agent in the Portland Metro. Principal Broker in Oregon, Managing Broker in Washington he has been licensed since 2003 for residential real estate sales in the Portland Metro area. Call him direct: 503-714-1111.

Pay less (4.5% commission max.) and get more with his top 1% listing team or buy your next home with his excellent top 1% buyer’s team. We work from Salem, Oregon to Vancouver, Washington and beyond. Check out our full services areas on the top menu.