17 March 2024

Mall 205, Portland, OR

A dead mall

Taking my first trip on Portland’s MAX Light Rail green line down to Clackamas Town Center, I noticed something along the way.  With a Target and Home Depot capping either end, at a quick glance it looked just like any old power center.  But the rusting sign on SE 96th Avenue displayed the name Mall 205.  I exited the train at the SE Main Street Station and went to take a look.

1- The parking lot entrance.  2- The façade looking toward Target.  3 & 4- Just inside Mall 205.

Much like its locally based peer Cedar Hills Crossing, Mall 205 is a smaller community center built to serve those within a close proximity.  The interior looked to have seen a somewhat recent renovation, but most inline stores were sadly vacant.  In fact, the most memorable aspect of the shopping center was that it was the only time I had ever seen a Home Depot mall entrance.

Mall 205 pamphlet ca 2017.  View the full PDF version here.

Mall 205 found its beginnings on the site of a former hospital in 1970.  Montgomery Ward and White Front served as the two original anchors.  The mall hung on well enough, even with the opening of nearby Clackamas, until both anchors entered bankruptcy and departed in the early 2000s.

Mall 205’s now closed off main concourse.

As the interior mall shops followed suit, the mall’s owners embarked on a major renovation.  The two-level Target was built on the Ward’s site while Home Depot was constructed on the White Front site, which had been taken over by Emporium in the late seventies.

The only Home Depot mall entrance I’ve ever seen.

Unsurprisingly, Mall 205’s interior was recently shuttered after the two anchors walled off their mall entrances.  Though newer names have been mentioned as possible adds to the lineup, these will only turn Mall 205 into what I had originally thought it was, your basic, everyday power center.

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