Sullivan’s Gulch. It’s quite a name, right? Makes me think of a Swamp in Lord of the Rings, or maybe a tavern in the middle of nowhere. Probably does not make you think of a cool neighborhood in northeast Portland, Oregon. But, it should, because that’s exactly what it is.
The compact, densely populated neighborhood is named after Timothy Sullivan, an early farmer in the area who was granted the piece of land on which the neighborhood now stands back in 1855.
The neighborhood borders the Lloyd District (with which it overlaps somewhat) on the west, Irvington and Grant Park on the north, and Kerns on the south.
Once a heavily forested area with numerous waterfalls, today, copious trees shroud the neighborhood and give it a rustic, cozy feel, despite being an urban center. Sullivan’s Gulch travels east from the Willamette River and, during the Great Depression, was home to a “Hooverville” shanty town. Today, the Gulch is a key urban transportation strip, used by the MAX Light Rail system, a freight railway, as well as Interstate 84, the Banfield Expressway.
Bordered by other great Portland districts, Sullivan’s Gulch is in the center of it all. And, with easy access to any of the transportation methods listed above, you can work anywhere in the Portland/Metro area and still have an easy commute home.
Large, Portland style homes and old ranches occupy small, yet charming lots with rolling green grass, plenty of parking, personable neighbors and well maintained streets and sidewalks. There are plenty of parks, Broadway Books and other local businesses and, most important of all, affordable housing. The crime rate, even with a close proximity to Max and Trimet stations, is very low.
It’s mostly zoned residential, and, the area is small, making it easy to get around but also providing ample opportunity to get to know your neighbors and maintain the feel of a tight, close-knit community.
Sullivan’s Gulch, despite its size, is big on personality and should be one of the top places to consider living in the Portland/Metro area if you like an urban setting with a small town feel.