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|Articles - February 2014|
|Tuesday, January 21, 2014|
A number of years ago, The Oregonian published a captivating photo of a group of businessmen eating lunch while peering, mesmerized, into the massive crater that was the beginnings of the Park Avenue West Tower downtown. It was an image straight out of Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel, the classic children’s story about a man and the steam shovel — Mary Anne — he refused to abandon, even though competition from gas and diesel shovels was ruining him.
Determined to show off Mary Anne’s prowess, Mike digs the foundation for the town hall of Popperville while its residents gather en masse around the deepening hole to cheer him on.
The design and building of a city is one of humankind’s greatest achievements. When building stalls, the whole city suffers — from job losses and sluggish economic growth, along with lack of dynamism and morale.
Five years after the crash knocked most residential and commercial projects off their foundations, building is back. That building is the theme of our February real estate issue: the Portland neighborhoods that are being transformed by the apartment boom; the reset of the Park Avenue West Tower, located around the corner from the Oregon Business office; and myriad projects in Bend and Ashland.
So much building is taking place, and so fast, that many Oregonians are already sounding a cautionary note about another housing bubble, along with social and traffic impacts of too much growth.
Not to belabor the comparison — I’m not a firm believer in the All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten school of business — but those concerns are also resonant of Mike Mulligan, a story about the old being replaced by the new and the nostalgia we often feel for old ways of doing things.
Hint: Mike deals with the problem by converting Mary Anne into a furnace, something like our current practice of using waste heat to power buildings.
When times are bad, people worry about not enough growth; when times are good, we worry about the adverse effects of growth. Such is the fickle nature of, well, human nature — and the business cycles that swing from one end of the spectrum to the other.
Today the real estate cycle is on the move. For those who want cheap entertainment, there is no shortage of holes in the ground (with modern-day steam shovels) to peer into. So bring your lunch and watch the city grow.
— Linda Baker
Thursday, July 10, 2014
BY TOM COX | OB BLOGGER
Tom Cox interviews Dr. Mark Goulston, author of Just Listen, Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone.
Thursday, June 26, 2014
BY ERIC FRUTS | OB BLOGGER
Last year, the housing market in Oregon—and the U.S. as a whole—was blasting off. The Case-Shiller index of home prices ended the year 13% higher than at the beginning of the year. But, was last year a blip, or a trend?
Thursday, May 29, 2014
How serious a problem is climate change? Readers want to have their cake and eat it, too.
Thursday, July 03, 2014
BY TED AUSTIN & MIKE BAELE | GUEST CONTRIBUTORS
The Office of Economic Analysis announced that Oregon is currently enjoying the strongest job growth since 2006. While this resurgence has been welcome, the lingering effects of the 2008 “Great Recession” continues to affect Oregon businesses, especially with regard to estate planning and business succession.
Thursday, May 29, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER
Remember mood rings? A team of scientists at Oregon State University has designed what might be considered a 21st-century analog of the ’70s jewelry fad: a bracelet that reveals one’s exposure to pollutants.
Friday, June 06, 2014
BY KATIE AUSBURGER | OB GUEST CONTRIBUTOR
How to build a hipster-friendly work environment.
Thursday, June 19, 2014
BY MONICA ENAND | GUEST CONTRIBUTOR
Nine tips for building habits among employees to respond when needed.
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