Tuesday, January 26, 2010

aloft to the MAX: jamison square and tanner springs park

One of Portland's greatest hallmarks is its urban parks---and with the MAX light rail just a hop-and-a-skip out our door, easy access to them is all yours!

Today, we take a look at two of the famous Pearl District's shining highlights: Jamison Square and Tanner Springs Park! Each offers a taste of the Portland vibe in its own unique way...

Jamison Square



The more urban of the two, Jamison Square is a lovely patch of city zen. A famous rock fountain---with a 'tidal pool' that kids love to play in---traverses its width, and a number of interesting art pieces mix-and-mingle with fresh grass, and array of trees, and even a delectable french restaurant (Fenouil) to create a complete experience.

Situated right in the heart of the Pearl District (with stylish condo towers all around), Jamison Square's got your dose of Portland's hip urban style :)

Tanner Springs Park


If you're looking for a unique respite from all that urban Pearl style, though, look no further than Tanner Springs Park, only one block north of Jamison Square. Tanner Springs presents an interesting contrast---versus Jamison's stone-built peace, the heart of Tanner Springs is composed entirely of native plants, recreating the riverside of old. Earthen paths lead you into a pad of wafting reeds, and to a pond brimming with fish species.

Situated within one city block, Tanner Springs has a power all its own to transport and relax you without miles of hiking to get away. Portland (and Oregon) embrace their natural spirit, and nothing calls to that in the city more than Tanner Springs. It has its share of art and architecture, as well, striking an interesting balance.

Once you've refreshed yourself with the park's unique natural touch, there's plenty of great dining with a few blocks---including custom gelato shakes across the street at the charming Via Delizia! :)

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To reach both parks from the aloft Portland, catch a MAX Red Line train to downtown, and get off at Galleria/SW 10th (about 40 minutes). Hop on the bright-and-happy Portland Streetcar heading north, and get off directly adjacent to Jamison Square at 10th and Johnson, or Tanner Springs Park at 10th and Northrup (either being ~10-11 minutes).

To return, catch the southbound streetcar on 11th, getting off at Taylor and walking a block north-and-east to the eastbound Red Line MAX stop at Yamhill and 10th, by the Central Library :)