Neighborhood We Love: Arbor Lodge

Courtesy of Dusty McCord

If you’ve ever ridden the MAX Yellow Line, there’s a chance you’ve visited Arbor Lodge.  This north Portland neighborhood saw the light rail arrive in 2004, a development that also brought about new local additions like the 2005 opening of a New Seasons Market on North Interstate Avenue. 

The area is also well-known for its western neighbor: University Park, home to the University of Portland. Easy access to the campus (a mere five-minute drive or 15-minute transit ride) from most spots in Arbor Lodge make it a popular area for teachers and students alike.

You may spot a few at Arbor Lodge’s best-known feature: the iconic Arbor Lodge Park that sits almost exactly at the heart of the neighborhood. The nearly 9-acre park boasts a popular playground that makes it a hit with families near and far. Don’t miss the park’s bronze statue Alligator and Otter, featuring the two animals taking a dip, or the nearby sea turtles, both commissions by Portland artist Pete Helzer. It’s also the site of the Neighborhood Association’s Jazz in the Park free concert (pictured above).


While it can be easy to miss this hidden gem on your way to destinations like St. Johns and Mississippi, we assure you, Arbor Lodge has plenty to offer the Portlander looking to stray off the beaten path (or pop off the MAX line).

What Neighbors Say

Courtesy of Amy Booker Photography

Ashley Gale and her husband, Kyle Eveland-DeWan, have lived in Arbor Lodge since they bought their first home in October 2020. A huge highlight to the area? The easy access to the great outdoors. Daughters Avery, 8, and Isla, 6, particularly enjoy going to Arbor Lodge Park and Gammans Park. “I love that we have nice spaces to be active, and safe streets,” says Ashley. “My kids can walk and ride bikes in our community and play with their friends. … It feels like people look out for each other and support each other.” Ashley would know; she’s a member of the local neighborhood association, helping out at park clean-ups, de-litter events and other Arbor Lodge happenings. If anything, she wishes more people understood the promise of the area. “We don’t have a central downtown like Kenton or St. Johns, so our retail and restaurant space is more spread out,” she says. “I continue to hope for more businesses and restaurants to establish in our community.”

Play Here

Courtesy of Harper’s Playground

Built in 2012, Harper’s Playground in Arbor Lodge Park came about thanks to a partnership between Portland Parks & Recreation and the Goldberg family, who named the park after their daughter, Harper. It was the first universally accessible playground in the city.  Expect an elevated sand table with water pump, climbing walls of various challenge levels, an accessible hill with slide and climbing net, xylophone, adaptive swings and much more. A nearby off-leash dog park and lighted tennis courts make the park a must-see destination no matter where you live.


Eat Here

Courtesy of Hail Snail

A mix of coffee shops and dive-y diners, Arbor Lodge offers an eclectic menu of options for the discerning foodie fam with most restaurants located on the outskirts of the neighborhood. There are a couple shining stars, however. Family-owned and queer-owned vegan restaurant Hail Snail (pictured above) offers out-of-this-world cinnamon rolls as well as gluten-free and soy-free options on the east side of 99W; across the street is the Arbor Lodge location of Futura Coffee Roasters. For even more breakfast, give Nite Hawk a spin (they serve it all day!). This old-school diner was founded in 1931 and retains much of its period charm and menu. Might we suggest the pie?

Live Here

Courtesy of Walk Score

$448,000: Median home price
$1,898: Average rent for a 2-bedroom apartment 

Sources: Realtor and Zumper

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