One Level Homes and Lifestyles – Pocket Cottage Real Estate Communities of Portland and the Great Northwest

Within my spiritual community there has been a decades long dialogue concerning the wish to share more deeply the kind of support we provide for each other – living in an intentional community. There has been much discussion around new development and housing, converting homes and apartment buildings with community spaces or just purchasing independently Real Estate together on the same street in a village. For a time there was a contingent that wanted to purchase Luxury RV Mobile Trailers and winter in AZ and caravan together across the country during summer visiting all our affiliated church groups.

I recently visited two cottage communities in very different locations within the Portland Metro and in a Rural City near Bingham. Both were Cottage Home Communities designed by Ross Chapin Architects and developed by local developers and builders. click to see Salish Pond Cottage for sale

As you might expect the folks  I introduced myself to at the adorable Salish Pond Cottages were very warm and friendly. I felt right at home in this 7 acre, (10) pocket Cottage community hidden in the middle of pristine wetlands, encircling a rather large fishing pond and a walk/bike to nearby Fairview Center shops.. The self appointed community host and her two cats proudly showed me their adorable community center cottage with antique décor sitting right on glimmering Salish Pond with a treasured annual Canadian goose family in residence.

Most of the (10) homes at Salish Pond offer a vaulted great room living space concept with a master on the main and extra loft space for guests and office space with square feet ranging from 900 to 1300 square feet. Values are between $191-270,000 , days on market (DOM)  84 days and average price of 220k. As I scanned over the pond, Mt Hood poked its head up and marked the direction of my next destination down into my favorite place in Oregon the Gorge.

45 minutes later I strolled into Wyers End sitting a block below the main Artists Village in White Salmon on the top of a magnificent bluff overlooking the Columbia, Hood River framed by a massive Mt Hood. Neighbors were sitting on their front porches and I introduced myself to a resident working in her manicured front yard who was a N.Carolina transplant. We chatted and she kindly guided me to her sister-in-law who was the neighborhood expert, local Realtor, to my surprise past associate of mine in Portland. They had moved up from living in the Pearl to enjoy the quiet mountain spaces, friends in the local community and unique amenities of both White Salmon and Hood River . click to see wyers end cottage for sale

This Cute (19) Cottage enclave has a triangular shape with (9) cottages uniquely placed amidst brilliant meandering gravel paths with low railing fences creating independent yards and yet a shared open homogeneous feeling. The (19) cottages all work around a great room concept with small functional country kitchen and many vintage touches and features. They range in size from 650-1500 sqft valued from $370,00 to $205,000.

I finished the day just down hwy 14 at my favoritest (short loop) 2 hr mtn top Wind Mtn. With one of the best views down both ends of the gorge perched on the rocky talus top beside sacred Native American vision quest sites and overlooking the wind river as it disappears into the hills at my last stop Carson Hot Springs for my own hot bath and wrap vision quest.

In my own search for the perfect community setting, I found both Salish Pond and Wylers well designed in locations of great beauty and high rated walkability. It was very interesting, the planners of both these cottage communities stopped short of incorporating a human element in the Core development concept. I suppose one could sucessfully bring that component with them by convincing close friends to purchase in mass.

Portland Urban Neighborhood Walks – SE UPLIFT West

Forgo a Columbia River Gorge trek for an inner city Bridgetown Neighborhood Stroll through Ladds Addition, Hosford Abernethy, Richmond, Colonial Heights, Sunnyside and Buckman 2-3 hours . 6 miles.

Patchwork of charcoal grey clouds overhead, I strolled in and out of sunshine and showers this weekend, with a pervading sense of the flow of the land from the Willamette up into the gentle hills Colonial Hills. It’s easy to imagine a thriving east side industrial river front in the early 19th century transitioning into apartments for shipyard workers into the first residential east side districts with small cottages and gentrified tree lined neighborhoods .

Don’t we wish we could start afresh developing our small inner city communities with the nurturing characteristics of the decentralized flower shaped community design of Ladds Addition . It works as well today as it was conceived in the 20′s.

I was reminded of my native New England and Hartfords 1621 founder Oaks and Elms walking under mature mulberry, birch, cypress, locust, elm tree lined streets with a racket of birds above. The eclectic mix of Single and Duplex Family Homes boast original Arts and Crafts, Queen Annes, Tudors, Old Portland and Spanish Stuccos, all framed in their spring flower finery. I stopped for a drink at Ladds coffee shop and sipped my expresso in little Paris in the center of the heart of the inner circle amidst engaged couples, sojourners taking a mid afternoon nap.

As I swiftly moved through the five secret flower garden hubs, weaving through the double octagon street configuration, I emerged on Hawthorne past several local taverns and great Turkish, Thai, Ethiopian, Indian, Italian , Mexican Taco Conveyor belt Restaurants.

The high walkability of these Colonial Heights, Richmond, Sunnyside and Buckman neighborhoods offer three independent theatres, two great organic groceries, and storefronts bursting with stacks of freshly flour coated baked breads, along with scores of coffee and tea shops, Powells and fine boutiques.

I repaired some damage to my poor hands during some heavy gardening earilier in the day dropping out of an ominous rain storm and into the local Cosmatology school for some reflexology and had my nails done.

 For those seeking a life balance there is a Zen Retreat, a World Buddhist Center, a Christian Nunnery, Mennonite and Episcopal Community Centers. Carrying the pilgrimage within, I rounded the circle walk passing along Sunnyside’s abundance of Queen Ann treasures.

And into the edge of Buckman brilliant mixed low density commercial residential retirement blocks back past the 1867 founders home, James Stephens who held the vision for this first Stephans Addition home to rest my hiking sticks in the front street of my jeep.

Our Earth Day each one of us every day of the Year!

There is a lot more GOOD ENVIRONMENTAL NEWS on the city and local communities across the globe. Recently, I made my annual trek to our local Realtors Tech Fair and was blown away by award-winning Energy Trust, a homegrown Oregonian nonprofit created by your state representatives to create cutting edge programs to empower us to become energy efficient and develop renewable resources.

I have sold a couple of fantastic Earth Star homes recently and after speaking with Earth Advantage, a partner of Energy Trust, enrolled in the Earth Advantage Institute located here in the Portland area to become a S.T.A.R Sustainable Home Professional.

Enter the Energy STAR assessment good energy contest and you could receive a free home performance assessment testing the components of your home and potential savings costs.

Is it your time to move towards a Sustainable Lifestyle? 80% off cost to Solarize your home and Real Estate! Good Questions, Great Solutions

Is Oregon sunny enough for solar? Is my home right for Solar? How does solar electricity work? How to Solarize & obtain credits, incentives from Energy Trust? Go to SE Uplift Neighborhood Coalition for FAQs

I love Energy Trusts Description of who they are - Saving Money, Saving Energy, Growing the Economy and Protecting our Environment.

World’s Most Attractive Real Estate Markets and Cities for Power, Knowledge and Influence

Global Wealth Report rates these the top ten most powerful Real Estate Markets. I wonder using our Oregon Values how the same Global Wealth Report would rate these cities.

1/ New York City

2/ London

3/ Paris


5/ Los Angeles

6/ Berlin





11/ Chicago

What large cities would you choose for the top ten offering quality of life, culture and values you consider important?

Urban Suburban Village Reports ….We are Currently at the Bottom Upswing

Positive changes to the Dom (days on market) and price per sqft portray a gradual upswing in the market in the SE, NE Inner City NW 148,149 areas through 2010.

Through 2010 and well into 2011 we will continue to experience a strong Buyers Market in the rest of the metro area. Click here to begin your search for a home in Urban Ne , Se neighborhoods.

Turn Loneliness into Community. Share a Goat or a box of home grown veggies with your neighbor!

Here’s list of ideas how to empower sharing Urban City Suburban Village Communities! These were collected via post-it notes from visitors to SF’s Green Festival booth.

  • Create core values & traditions together
  • Have “Soup Night” – a weekly event: invite friends, share poetry and music, and eat soup!
  • Be a friend to someone
  • “Sharing bags” – fill a bag with gifts, give it to someone, and then ask the person to fill it with other things and pass it on.Neighborhood home improvement groups
  • Energy raising (neighbors doing energy-saving retrofits for each other)
  • Goat sharing for lawn mowing and clearing of brush
  • Water raising (neighbors building rain catchment barrels and grey water systems together)
  • Block parties
  • Frequent potlucks on our street
  • Share a vegetable box
  • Neighborhood garden Grow and share food locally
  • Book swaps
  • Meal sharing
  • Work lunch co-op
  • Dance together healthy! (Barefoot Boogie Dance Jam, Berkeley)
  • Chicken feed co-ops
  • Turn loneliness into community; turn consumerism into tool-sharing; turn foreclosure into shared housing
  • Start a neighborhood compost rotation
  • Corner grocery store
  • Jam sessions (make fruit preserves and music together)
  • Carpool

Magic and the Fair Folk Reside in Portland behind your Homes and Backyards

Visit the 30th Annual Trillium Festival April 10 and 11th at our fabulous local Oregon’s Tryon Creek. The only State Park located in a major  metropolitan US city. A pristine 600 acre magical sanctuary totally hidden amidst the homes and real estate of the burgeoning communities of Dunthorpe, Lake Oswego and  Portland Oregon. 

This weekend, I  discovered a dwarf in a red jerkin. He was sitting on top of an ancient tree watching over one my favorite secret spots in the heart of the park next  to huge nursing log that fallen over Tryon creek that was birthing four 20′ cedars. 

I discovered this spot on one of my favorite perimeter hikes starting where the steelhead make their way up the creek from the Willamette. Walking counterclockwise up to L&C down 4th ave back into the depths of the park down northcreek to the west horse loop, carving a yin yang looping across cedar, south creek and back to iron mtn. trail. Approx  6 miles.

Dawn and Dust are the best times to hear  over 50 species of birds and small mammals in the park. Just before dark one can hear the hoots owls calling out to each other near the bunk bridge.  A ranger mentioned recently there is a coyote den  in one of the hidden canyons.

The Tryon Watershed is huge with the headwaters beginning in Multnomah and Capital Hill.  30  tributaries flowing with hundreds of springs, rivlets and rills are the lifeblood and arteries of Tryon.  One of the last unobstructed tributaries of the Willamette in Portland.10  trails heads  lead to the heart of the park  where my friend the dwarf sometimes makes an appearance.