Portland OR : Oregon

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What Portland OR is like for active adults
Choosing Portland, Oregon as your retirement community has many advantages. You get many interesting downtown areas with great public transportation. Many homes or apartments overlook rivers, parks, and mountains. Great skiing, hiking, and other outdoor activities are all at your doorstep, as are many cultural programs. The climate is ideal for growing things, especially roses. Opportunities of every description for paid work or volunteering are all around you. The city has a well-deserved reputation for land use controls, which attempt to moderate the effects of rampant growth.

Known as “The City of Roses”, Portland (population 558,000, over 2 million people in the metro area) attracts adults over 50 who are looking for a bustling and diverse community. It is also a magnet for young people because it has a youthful flair.  The city has 227 parks, including an urban wilderness in Forest Park (5,000-plus acres). It is exceedingly bike-friendly with almost 270 miles of street lanes and paths, set-off with nonskid paint (see our article about bike-friendly Portland at BPUSA).  Golf is very popular here and can be played most of the year.

Here is a guide to retirement in Oregon
Picture of Portland street car courtesy of Wikipedia and Cacophony.
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Where to Live & Real Estate Values

There are many neighborhoods in the city for retirees - old and new, stand alone houses or apartments. If you are thinking of moving to Portland you would probably want to visit or rent here first to get a feel for the many different neighborhoods. The Pearl District in the Northwest, for example, is a former warehouse and industrial district that has many loft and condo conversions to go along with its shops, restaurants, and art galleries. In the suburbs there are many active adult communities to choose from (see link at right).
According to the National Association of Realtors the median selling price of a home in the Portland/Vancouver/Beaverton area was $246,000 in the first quarter of 2013.

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What is special about this retirement community

 A major but manageable city; Views of lakes and mountains; Exceptional parks - Tom McCall Waterfront Park, Mt. Tabor Park, and Forest Park; Charming Neighborhoods and downtowns; Microbreweries; The International Rose Test Garden in Washington Park; Trail Blazers NBA basketball team;Leach Botanical Gardens; Skiing and the outdoors on Mt. Hood; Portland State University (26,000)

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What is not special about this retirement community
It rains in Portland 155 days a year
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What kinds of people like retiring here
Active adults 55+ will like living in this bustling but livable city. It has a beautiful natural setting with a strong economic base. If you want to have a job in retirement you can most likely easily find one– paid and volunteer. There is plenty of culture and outdoor activity.
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Local economy is driven by
High tech, tourism, services, education
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Climate and Physical Environment
Portland is a city at the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia rivers. Portland lies on top of an extinct Plio-Pleistocene volcanic field known as the Boring Lava Field. This is the Marine West Coast climate region, marked by warm summers and rainy but temperate winters, ideal for roses. Average summer high temperature is 79 and the January average low is 37. December is the wettest month.
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Restaurants & Cultural Scene

 American Style magazine named Portland as the 10th best Big City Arts Destination in the U.S. ; More than 75 arts organizations operate here, including: Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, Portland Art Museum, and Oregon Historical Society Museum, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Oregon Symphony, Portland Center Stage, and the Portland Opera; The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry

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Crime
The crime rate is above average.
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Medical facilities
There is an array of major hospitals, including the OHSU Hospital and clinics.
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Transportation

Mass transit connects the city and suburbs with buses, the Metropolitan Area Express (MAX) light rail system, the Portland Aerial Tram, and the Portland Streetcars. AMTRAK offers service here. Portland International Airport is 20 minutes away. Portland has won numerous distinctions as a bicycling-friendly community, and is considered above average in walkability when compared to other cities. 

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Valuable Links

Portland online

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What people are saying about Portland OR

Re: Been here 10 months
Hi - I am very interested in your opinion of Vancouver now that you have been there awhile. I would also like know if you would do anything differently - perhaps moving to a different town? Living in Oregon vs Washington? Any information you can give me would be appreciated. Thank you myah2668 quote="SNClocks"]We moved to Vancouver, WA, just across the Columbia River from Portland, from Oklahoma, where we had lived for 25 years. First surprise was that insurance on our new house was less than on our Oklahoma home – even though our new home cost 4 times what our Oklahoma home cost. Ahhh – no tornado’s or base-ball sized hail! Surprise surprise, car insurance less also. And, hmmm, didn’t have to turn on the a/c last summer. Talk about a savings in electricity compared to Oklahoma? Being vegetarian, we have been totally amazed at how wonderful the produce is, and how affordable. Oh, and there are a wealth of really great vegetarian restaurants in Portland. And, while I know housing is twice the cost in Oklahoma, the views are just stunning. This afternoon, while leaving for the gym (which is 12 minutes from the house) I watched a bald eagle ride the thermals over the lake. Two days ago we were watching young men, tougher than myself, waterski. And, up on mount Hood (90 minutes from the house) they got 7 inches of snow in the last 24 hours and the surface conditions are rated “Tracked fresh snow on the groom that's a little heavier down low. Off the groom, we have tracked fresh snow, stashes of fresh, and wind affected snow. Snow reporting team approves. 13" of new at 5250', 21" at 6600. Parks are in storm recovery.” It is well known that Portland is one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in America – which we love, since we both love to ride. There is a phenomenal traditional music group with a wide variety of opportunities to enjoy a wide range of music. Being a woodworker, I was blown away when I found a major equipment supplier here. After Oklahoma City, where everything had to be ordered, I am actually finding the things I want on the shelf! Did I mention the trees yet – we went for a hike in a park in Portland last weekend – oh my lord – it is so nice to be able to have well groomed trails so readily accessible. We love Portland and are so glad we made the move! Stephen and Kelly[/quote]
Posted by myah2668 on April 22, 2012
Been here 10 months
We moved to Vancouver, WA, just across the Columbia River from Portland, from Oklahoma, where we had lived for 25 years. First surprise was that insurance on our new house was less than on our Oklahoma home – even though our new home cost 4 times what our Oklahoma home cost. Ahhh – no tornado’s or base-ball sized hail! Surprise surprise, car insurance less also. And, hmmm, didn’t have to turn on the a/c last summer. Talk about a savings in electricity compared to Oklahoma? Being vegetarian, we have been totally amazed at how wonderful the produce is, and how affordable. Oh, and there are a wealth of really great vegetarian restaurants in Portland. And, while I know housing is twice the cost in Oklahoma, the views are just stunning. This afternoon, while leaving for the gym (which is 12 minutes from the house) I watched a bald eagle ride the thermals over the lake. Two days ago we were watching young men, tougher than myself, waterski. And, up on mount Hood (90 minutes from the house) they got 7 inches of snow in the last 24 hours and the surface conditions are rated “Tracked fresh snow on the groom that's a little heavier down low. Off the groom, we have tracked fresh snow, stashes of fresh, and wind affected snow. Snow reporting team approves. 13" of new at 5250', 21" at 6600. Parks are in storm recovery.” It is well known that Portland is one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in America – which we love, since we both love to ride. There is a phenomenal traditional music group with a wide variety of opportunities to enjoy a wide range of music. Being a woodworker, I was blown away when I found a major equipment supplier here. After Oklahoma City, where everything had to be ordered, I am actually finding the things I want on the shelf! Did I mention the trees yet – we went for a hike in a park in Portland last weekend – oh my lord – it is so nice to be able to have well groomed trails so readily accessible. We love Portland and are so glad we made the move! Stephen and Kelly
Posted by SNClocks on April 26, 2011
Walkable... A+
Portland has a lot going for it. First, it's beautiful and was rated as the US's most European city! Second, there is an abundance of nature space and trails. Last, and most important is its walkability! Check out www.walkscore.com, and you'll see how many walkable communities there are. Our Co-op is located in NW Portland, right across from the hospital (should we need anything!) and we've found that the new trend is CITY RETIREMENT. People are moving BACK in.
Posted by carolynsheldon on June 07, 2010

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Facts about PORTLAND OR
  • State: OR
  • Environment: Urban,Suburban,College Town,Cultural Center,Biking Community,
  • City Population: 100,001+
  • Median age of Population: 25-44
  • Avg Jan Temperature: 21-40
  • Avg July Temperature: 60-80
  • Median HH Income: 41,001-60,000
  • Average Home Price (MLS): $200,001-$300,000
  • Annual Property Tax on a $200,000 house: 2000-4000
  • Total Crime Index: 111-120 (high)
  • Cost of Living Index: 101-110 (slightly above average)
  • Culture Index: 121+ (very high)
  • State Sales Tax: No
  • State Income Tax: Yes
  • Name of the Guide: jfb48

Can you add to or correct these Facts? Or do you have a photo of this community we could use? If so, please click on Edit these facts

Vote on the Ratings for Portland OR
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1. Overall Retirement Ratings Discuss

1. Rating: 3.4/5 ( 14 votes cast)

2. Expense:
Inexpensive to Luxury Discuss

2. Rating: 3.8/5 ( 16 votes cast)

3. Taxes:
Inexpensive to Expensive Discuss

3. Rating: 3.2/5 ( 11 votes cast)

4. Culture:
None to Cosmopolitan Discuss

4. Rating: 4.0/5 ( 10 votes cast)

5.Recreation:
None to Summer camp Discuss

5. Rating: 4.2/5 ( 9 votes cast)

6. Transportation:
Boondocks to World Hub Discuss

6. Rating: 4.4/5 ( 9 votes cast)

7. Security:
Dangerous to Ft. Knox Discuss

7. Rating: 2.3/5 ( 13 votes cast)

8. Medical Facilities:
None to Excellent Discuss

8. Rating: 3.9/5 ( 7 votes cast)

9. Political Situation:
Conservative to Liberal Discuss

9. Rating: 4.2/5 ( 10 votes cast)

10. Environmental:
Oblivious to Ultra-Green Discuss

10. Rating: 4.6/5 ( 9 votes cast)