"Most People Blast Right Through" Wilsonville by glabah

Wilsonville Travel Guide: 11 reviews and 50 photos

Suburban Wasteland?

For the most part, Wilsonville has a reputation as a suburban wasteland. It is populated by freeway based businesses such as scattered gasoline stations and a few other such businesses along Interstate 5. In the last 20 years, it has attracted several high tech firms such as the Xerox printer division.

The vast majority of people who come to Wilsonville are those that pass through on Interstate 5, without ever a thought of stopping in the town.

There are a few items of interest to the traveler, however. This includes the Clackamas County Tourist Information Office (note that if you are interested in Portland items this is not the place to go, as Portland isn't in Clackamas County). City Center Park is on the eastern edge of this information office, and the park also contains the Oregon Korean Veterans Memorial, dedicated to those who served in this war.

The photo above shows the fountain located in City Center Park and the Murase Plaza Fountain also provides a place to play on hot days. However, there is NO LIFEGUARD ON DUTY as stated on all the signs around the fountains.

Some Preserved Open Spaces, but Well Hidden

Here is one of the last green places in Wilsonville - a family farm with the paint peeled off the barn (center) and it old farm house. In the background is a vast building with a Sysco name on it. To the right is a series of car dealerships and pavement as far as the eye can see. To the left is a huge parking lot and mall complex with several trees in it and everything else concrete or pavement. Behind me is six solid lanes of Interstate 5, and beyond that is another vast complex of concrete and pavement. Unfortunately this is the way Wilsonville has developed, and soon even this last remaining green spot will be paved over. This is the unappealing glob of concrete that is what most people see of Wilsonville as they go blasting through on Interstate 5.

Despite this suburban wasteland reputation, there are several points of interest in the city to those who have an interest in the natural world.

Even right in downtown Wilsonville, there is a small preserved wilderness area that is part of the fairly large Memorial Park on the banks of the Willamette River. On the west side of town, the World Forestry Center (located in Portland) has a plot of land that serves as their experimental forest, called the Magness Memorial Tree Farm. This forest is open to the public, and serves as a nice wilderness park in the area. In recent years a large tract of land west of the new Fred Meyer store has been turned into the Graham Oaks Nature Park, which preserves an open space and aims to turn it back into an oak savanna.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Has hotels, a few city parks, and a tourist information center.
  • Cons:Not much else here, and is terribly cut to pieces by many busy roads.
  • In a nutshell:Several of the parks are real gems, and rural areas are reasonably attractive, but much of city isn't that pleasant.
  • Last visit to Wilsonville: Feb 2008
  • Intro Updated Mar 5, 2013
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glabah

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