Portland is the largest city in Oregon and 23rd most populous city in the United States. Currently it holds the title as the third most populated city in the Pacific Northwest. Every year the number of residents has steadily increased to a total population of more than 500,000 people.
This 503 area code city was incorporated in 1851 and is touted today for its light rail system and for its strong land use planning. Due to its large investment in the metro system and light rail it is often times considered the most environmentally friendly cities in the entire world. The light rail system in this 503 area code city is often admired as a model for other cities planning to incorporate rail systems into their landscape.
Not only is Portland known for its environmentally friendly status but it is also called the City of Roses. This is because of the numerous rose gardens located within the city. The most well known rose gardens are the International Rose Test Garden and the Portland Japanese Garden.
Aside from the gardens located within this 503 area code city it also holds the title of having the smallest park in the world and for having the largest wilderness park within city limits in the United States. The wilderness park covers over 5,000 acres that have been permanently preserved and protected from development. In total there is more than 8,100 acres of ecologically valuable land that has been permanently protected from development by voter approval.
This green city is also one of only 3 cities in the entire United States to have extinct volcanoes within its city limits. Mount Tabor Park contains these volcanoes and is also a preserved area that is known for its scenic views and historic reservoirs.
Aside from its status as a green city this 503 area code city is also known for its performing arts. It was named the 10th best Big City Arts Destination in the United States by American Style magazine. Portland boasts a range of performing arts institutions that include the Oregon Ballet Theatre, Oregon Symphony, Portland Youth Philharmonic, and the Portland Opera. This 503 area code city also holds stages similar to New York’s Off Broadway. These stages include the Artists Repertory Theatre, Portland Center Stage, Miracle Theatre, Stark Raving Theatre, and Tears of Joy Theatre. Along with all of these entertainment and performing arts stages and theatres Portland also hosts the world’s only HP Lovecraft Film Festival at the Hollywood Theatre.
Furthermore, Portland also sustains a strict policy on free speech. The Oregon Supreme Court in Henry v. Oregon Constitution 1987 specifically found that nudity in certain clubs is protected speech. This led to an influx of constitutional lawyers into the area to try and have the law overturned by certain residents in the area who disagreed with the result of the case. It is still considered one of the prominent cases studied by lawyers in Oregon. Portland had gone farther than most cities in the United States in protecting free speech.