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Foster Powell | Oregon Homes

ALL ABOUT

Widely recognized as one of the fastest growing on-the-rise neighborhoods in Portland, Foster Powell (affectionately known as FoPo by residents and locals) is a diverse area filled with unique shopping, tree-lined streets, and some of the most talked about restaurants in town. Within five years, Foster Powell will be as hip as NE Alberta or N Mississippi, as restaurant and entertainment investors have already shown a large rise in interest in the area, though it will no doubt keep its quirky, creative character.

The best description of Foster Powell comes from resident Colleen: "I've never known a place so filled with people dedicated to chewing over their own ideas, rather than grazing the corn-syrup sweet grass of mass media. People here do stuff. Sure, there are a lot of televisions on around here, but there are also tennis playing clans, painters, gardening masters, stubbly musicians, dancers, carpenters and the random miniature-train-set-builder... Not to mention Chinese families blossoming in backyard barbecues, street signs in Russian, vibrant and exotic murals, and strong livers (in both senses). These people are interesting enough to last through summers of over-the-fence discussions."

HISTORY

Much of the construction in the Foster-Powell Neighborhood followed the construction of Portland's original electric streetcar line in the 1890s. In Portland’s early days, Foster was a dusty trail used by farmers to haul their goods downtown, passing through the then-independent town of Lents (near 92nd Avenue) on the way. Portland expanded and connected transportation links to suburbs, including the old Mt. Scott streetcar line which traveled up Foster on its way to Lents, eventually connecting to service all the way to Estacada. In the early 20th century, Foster was Portland’s widest street, with 17-foot wide sidewalks modeled after Parisian boulevards.

LOCATION

Foster Powell is a neighborhood in the Southeast section of Portland. The triangular neighborhood is bounded to the north by Powell Boulevard (Highway 26), to the south by Foster Road, and to the east by 82nd Ave. These major streets provide easy access to Dowtown Portland, The 205 Interstate, and all of the east side of Portland. All three roads are home to frequent service Trimet bus lines: the 14 links Foster to Hawthorne and downtown; the 9 links Powell Blvd. with downtown and Northeast Portland, and the 72 runs on 82nd from Clackamas Town Center to North Killingsworth Avenue. Additionally, the 17 runs down Holgate Avenue to downtown and North Portland.

Foster Powell is home to three beautiful parks: Essex Park on 79th and Center, Kern Park on 66th and Center, and Laurelwood Park at the intersection of Foster Road and Holgate Boulevard. The Firland Parkway, a median with large trees in the middle of 72nd Ave between Foster and Holgate also lies within the neighborhood. Most of the commercial activity occurs at the fringes of the neighborhood, on Powell, Foster and 82nd, while the interior is largely residential.

ENTERTAINMENT & SHOPPING

Performance Works Northwest: If you're looking for the perfect place to take an affordable yoga class, check out a local band, or learn how to express yourself through modern performance, this is certainly the place. This community-oriented organization was established to support the contemporary performing arts through the creation and performance of dance, comedy, music, and much more. The organization facilitates shows by their own company, sponsors and presents the of work by other artists in the area, and provide and affordable space for rehearsals, workshops & other events.

Lents Commons: Located in the center of the Lents Neighborhood at the corner of 92nd and Foster Rd, this coffee shop and performance space provides a local venue for local artists and musicians to display, promote, and perform their work. Each week Lents Commons provides space for poetry and movie nights, music performances, Acting Improv Workshops hosted by the Cleveland High School Improv Club, and open mic nights for the community. Grab a cup of coffee and a great salad and spread out in this welcoming space.

Grandma's Funky Furniture: You can't miss their bright blue mural of a storefront as you drive west along Foster, and you won't want to miss the deals that you could find with a little bit of hunting inside. The owner finds great vintage pieces, brings them in, sometimes paints them (like the patio furniture), but the store is a bit of a maze so be prepared to spend some quality time exploring the stacks. (6852 SE Foster Road)

Guapo Comics: (6350 SE Foster Road) Featuring the largest selections of independently published zines and mini-comics in Portland, this community gathering spot is home to readings, art events for kids, and city-wide comic events. Who wouldn't love a place where you can walk in, buy a cool graphic novel or zine, get a really decent latte and then plop down and read your new purchase while simultaneously taking notes on the chalk board wall next to you? The tables are covered with pages from comic books, and Guapo is worn in enough to be comfortable, but brightly colored and well lit to give off a clean and happy vibe.

I've Been Framed: Definitely one of my favorite places in FoPo, I've Been Framed provides some of the cheapest art materials in town with, hands down, the best service around. They've been in Portland almost 60 years providing a unique selection of supplies and frames for any kind of masterpiece - big or small. Are you looking for new art supplies? Used art supplies? Rare & unique supplies? Salvage supplies? Framing materials & frames? It's here. Prepare to get happily lost. (4950 SE Foster Rd)

Portland Fruit Company: One of the best places in town to get fresh produce at very low prices. They have an array of fruits and vegetables catering to nearly every Portland culture: Latino, Slavic, Asian, American, and they take pride in offering fruits and vegetables that are not doctored in wax and food coloring. I love avacado season here, and citrus is always inexpensive. 8040 Southeast Foster Road

Dennis' Seven Dees: This fantastic locally owned nursery provides knowledgable staff, good prices, and a fantastic array of yard care and plants suited for Northwest living. They also provide landscaping and lawn services. Dennis’ 7 Dees has been a leading nursery, garden center and landscape contractor in the Portland area since 1956, and in that time they've developed plenty of local knowledge and skills that they are more than happy to share with you. (6025 Southeast Powell)

FAVORITE RESTAURANTS

Foster Burger: Recently named one of America's "Top 10 Best New Burger Spots" in Bon Appetit Magazine, this joint serves up some of the best food in town. They've got a simple menu, with really great burgers, toppings, and some of the best fresh cut fries in Portland. Simple but well executed, this place is really earning their reputation. The secret of this place is high quality ingredients, from the buns made next door at the Vietnamese bakery to the great quality meat for the burgers, with plenty of local micro-brews on tap and great cocktails. 5339 Southeast Foster Road

Arleta Library Bakery Cafe: This cute little spot was featured on the Food Network's "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives" (check out the video here) and is known for their biscuits and gravy, hashes, semolina griddle cakes, brioche french toast, and sicilian hash. The owners, chef, and bakers really, REALLY know what they are doing, and you won't find anything canned or processed in this kitchen. It's great food, every day, and they are really connected to their neighborhood. The owners really try to buy as much of their goods as possible from local farmers and producers, while keeping their prices reasonable so that everyone in the neighborhood can have great food close to home. (5513 SE 72nd and Harold)

Steakadelphia: These renegades have been serving up delicious authentic Philly Cheese Steaks for while now, and their grub is honest and affordable. Straight up Philly style cheesesteaks, fries, milkshakes and burgers, without a lot of fuss. Cheez Whiz, provolone, and chicken steaks are all available. You'll get a lot of food, but don't complain if you get some Philly attitude as well. Everything is made to order, and you can take your sandwich out to the park just down the street.

AWESOME PUBS

Amor Lounge: 6219 Southeast Foster Road

Bar Carlo: 6433 Foster Road

Da' Hui: 6504 Southeast Foster Road

Bob & Alices Tavern: 6517 Southeast Foster Road

O'Malley's: 6535 Southeast Foster Road