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By the 1970s, Portland had well established itself as a progressive city, and experienced an economic boom for the majority of the decade; however, the slowing of the housing market in 1979 caused demand for the city and state timber industries to drop significantly.
The city's increased presence within the cultural lexicon has established it as a popular city for young people, and it was second only to Louisville, Kentucky as one of the cities to attract and retain the highest number of college-educated people in the United States.
These massive floods occurred during the last ice age and filled the Willamette Valley with 300 to 400 feet (91 to 122 m) of water.
Before American pioneers began arriving in the 1800s, the land that eventually became Portland and surrounding Multnomah County was inhabited for many centuries by two bands of indigenous Chinook people— the Multnomah and the Clackamas peoples.
Clockwise from top: Downtown Portland viewed from east bank of the Willamette River; the Wells Fargo Center; Portland Aerial Tram and Mount Hood; Jackson Tower and Fox Tower viewed from Pioneer Courthouse Square; St. Its Combined Statistical Area (CSA) ranks 18th with a population of 3,160,488.
The denser and earlier-developed west side extends into the lap of the West Hills, while the flatter east side fans out for roughly 180 blocks until it meets the suburb of Gresham.Though much of downtown Portland is relatively flat, the foothills of the Tualatin Mountains, more commonly referred to locally as the "West Hills", pierce through the northwest and southwest reaches of the city. Three of downtown's most heavily utilized bridges are more than 100 years old and are designated historic landmarks: Hawthorne Bridge (1910), Steel Bridge (1912), and Broadway Bridge (1913).Council Crest Park, the tallest point within city limits, is located in the West Hills and rises to an elevation of 1,073 feet. Tabor, an extinct volcanic cinder cone, which rises to 636 feet. Portland's newest bridge in the downtown area, Tilikum Crossing, opened in 2015 and is the first new bridge to span the Willamette in Portland since the 1973 opening of the double-decker Fremont Bridge.During World War II, it housed an "assembly center" from which up to 3,676 people of Japanese descent were dispatched on concentration camps in the heartland.
The Pacific International Livestock Exposition operated from May through September 10, 1942 processing people from the city, northern Oregon, and central Washington.
Nearby Powell Butte and Rocky Butte rise to 614 feet and 612 feet, respectively. Other bridges that span the Willamette river in the downtown area include the Burnside Bridge, the Ross Island Bridge (both built 1926), and the double-decker Marquam Bridge (built 1966).