Downtown Progress Report


In a recent blog post, Jim Mark of the Melvin Mark Co. and Portland Business Alliance chair, heralded "Downtown Portland is booming." 

By many measures, Portland and Oregon’s economy are booming right now. Oregon’s economic expansion marches on, construction starts are up and our city is seeing a record number of cranes on the horizon.
— Jim Mark, PBA Chair


  • 45 projects currently under construction, up from 39 last year, with 56 more in the pipeline and significant activity in the central Eastside, Lloyd and lower Burnside districts
  • Three hotels have recently been completed with seven more under construction, which will add roughly 1,250 rooms in the next two years.
  • 30 new businesses have opened in downtown
  • 2017's Pedestrian Count Results and Comparables report showed a 19 percent year-over-year net increase in foot traffic.
  • Reports show Oregon's strong economy and low unemployment rate is benefiting the leisure and hospitality industry, followed by construction and manufacturing.


Yet Mark acknowledges that Portland has unfinished business ahead. For us native Oregonians and longtime Portlanders, there are obvious challenges that need to be addressed with a sense of urgency from all quarters. Homelessness, mental health, education, transportation infrastructure and other vexing issues require Portland's best and brightest to work together to find both near and longterm solutions.

Despite this positive news, we have to remember not everyone is benefiting. And with summer in full swing, it’s critical that the private and public sector continue to work together towards solutions to our housing crisis, and ensure our city is livable for residents and visitors alike.

As Mark concluded his blog post, "We must continue to work together as a community so that issues surrounding livability and homelessness don’t define our city."  

On that point, we can all agree.