Living next door to Portland State

Blackstone residents are in the center of everything, from concerts to rallies in the park blocks and fresh produce at the farmer’s market. The five-story brick building is old, but just minutes from most classrooms.


Blackstone residents are in the center of everything, from concerts to rallies in the park blocks and fresh produce at the farmer’s market. The five-story brick building is old, but just minutes from most classrooms.

Apartment breakdown:
16 sleepers with community bath/shower and kitchen.
14 studios with kitchen and bathtub.
20 one-bedroom units with kitchen, bath and living room.
Six two-bedroom units with kitchen, bath and living room.

Amenities: Electricity and trash included. Phone and Internet service are available for an additional fee.

On the good side: Shares a beautiful, flower-laden courtyard with Montgomery Court.

On the bad side: The building was constructed in 1931, consequently it lacks many modern features.

What’s around: The Millar Library, South Park Blocks, Peter W. Stott Center and Community Field, Subway, Starbucks, Plaid Pantry and Paccini.

Montgomery Court

Montgomery Court’s aged brick walls exude a refined elegance. The four-story edifice has a serene courtyard, adjacent to Blackstone. Montgomery residents can enjoy the courtyard’s beauty at ground level, or from roomy balconies on each floor. Residents can also relax with friends in spacious lounges on the first floor.

Apartment breakdown:
143 sleepers with vanity sink, community bathroom with shower, mini-refrigerator and microwave. No kitchens areas in building. 

Amenities: Laundry facilities, furnished units with bed, dresser, desk and chair, carpeted floors, electricity and trash. Parking, phone and Internet service are available for an additional fee. 

On the good side: Great location along the South Park Blocks.

On the bad side: At only 117 to 280 square feet, students complain that the rooms are cramped and cooking is impossible without a kitchen.

What’s around: Science Building 1, South Park Blocks, Peter W. Stott Center and Community Field, Portland Streetcar, Subway, Starbucks, Plaid Pantry and Paccini.

King Albert

Nothing about King Albert really catches one’s eye. Built in 1931, the building’s bland tan bricks illustrate its age. Students say that the King Albert is clean and quiet enough for a diligent student. However, at times, the combination of sports teams practicing on the Stott Community Field and events in the Park Blocks can be too loud.   

Apartment breakdown:
64 studios with hardwood floors, kitchen, range oven, refrigerator and bathroom with tub.

Amenities: Laundry facilities, electricity and trash. Parking, phone and Internet service are available for an additional fee.

On the good side: The Meetro, a café located on the bottom floor, provides a place to gather with friends or snag a quick cup of joe on the way to class.

On the bad side: King Albert’s untidy exterior appearance is less than appealing.

What’s around: The Meetro, Peter W. Stott Center and Community Field, Portland Streetcar, Science Building 2, Paradise Deli and Grocery, and Blockbuster Video.

Stephen E. Epler Hall

Tucked in the northwestern corner of campus, Epler Hall offers studio apartments with large windows, built-in appliances and bicycle storage. Residents can also get free electricity, trash, phone, Internet and cable.

A rainwater harvesting system is in use throughout the facility, maintaining an innovative approach to environmental sustainability. The system utilizes runoff water to irrigate native plants in planters near Epler Hall and King Albert, and is also used to supply toilet water in Epler’s bathrooms.

Apartment breakdown:
104 studios with kitchenette and bath, with single or double occupancy.

On the good side: The Global Village Program, located on the top floor, promotes diversity and intercultural learning amongst international and domestic students.

On the bad side: I-405 is directly behind the building (meaning lots of traffic noise).

What’s around: Hoffman Hall, Science Building 2, Paradise Deli and Grocery and Blockbuster Video.

Ondine Residence Hall

Think energy, action and spirit at Portland State, and the epicenter for those three byproducts is Ondine Hall. The Ondine touts a television lounge, a pool table, conference and meeting space to hang out. The high concentration of students and fun in the 15-story building has caused problems. In recent years, students have complained that studying is impossible due to raucous parties and overflowing third floor bathrooms that created a raw sewage spill into several rooms in 2003-04.

Apartment breakdown:
216 single or double occupancy rooms, either sleeper or bachelor.
Bachelor: Share a common bathroom and kitchen with adjoining room.
Sleeper: Private bathroom.

Amenities: Trash, electricity, phone, Internet, cable, laundry facilities, range oven, small refrigerator and parking for an additional fee.

On the good side: All units are furnished, saving residents time, effort and money.

On the bad side: Students frequently complain that with all the parties people are always wandering the hallways. 

What’s around: Cheerful Tortoise, Big Town Hero, Taco Del Mar, Hot Lips Pizza, McDonalds, Chit Chat Café and Abu Rasheed Lebanese Restaurant.

The Broadway

Above all, one word comes to mind when thinking about Broadway—trendy. The building has studio apartments with cement floors, additional space for lounging in joined-floor lobbies and an in-house computer lab for connecting to cyberspace. The 10-floor building also houses an eco-roof with plants in a rooftop garden.

Apartment breakdown:
383 single or double occupancy studios with kitchenette and shower.

Unit types: Deluxe with additional windows, regular and economy rooms.

Amenities: Laundry facilities, private bathrooms, high-speed Internet, stove top, small refrigerator, phone, trash, and cable.

On the good side: Broadway couples with Ondine to offer the First Year Experience, a program that offers a meal plan, and educational and social programs for first-year students.

On the bad side: The uphill trek from most classrooms to Broadway is exhausting.

What’s around: Chipotle, Quiznos, Blue Fin Sushi, Baan-Thai Restaurant, Cheerful Tortoise Bar & Grill and Great Clips. 

West Hall, Parkway, St. Helens, Stratford

Located northwest of Science Building 2, West Hall is a nine-story building with 189 roomy one-bedroom apartments containing modern kitchens and large windows. Students get free phone, cable and Internet, though they must pay for electricity.

Like Montgomery Court and Blackstone, Parkway residents benefit from being in the heart of Portland State’s unique culture. Housing options range from sleepers to two-bedroom units.

The St. Helens lacks the pizzazz some University Housing buildings possess, though the building’s subtleties make it a viable choice. Beautiful French doors and hardwood floors are prominent features in many of St. Helens’ apartments, which include one sleeper, 35 studios and 15 one-bedroom units.

Only a short walk from Safeway, McMenamins Market Street Pub, the Portland Streetcar and Portland State classrooms, Stratford residents can reach all of the essentials within a small radius. All utilities, besides phone and  Internet, are included in Stratford’s 21 studios and 10 one-bedroom units.

University Housing can be reached at 503-725-4333.

On the outskirts

Living on campus is certainly convenient, but it can become suffocating. Near-campus housing is often the perfect balance of still living within proximity to campus while still maintaining a sense of independence.

College Housing Northwest administers several near-campus complexes that are ideal for Portland State students. College Housing Northwest can be reached at 503-725-4340.

Goose Hollow

About a 10-minute stroll from campus, Goose Hollow is a popular housing venue for Portland State students. The complex is segmented into two portions: A 16-floor tower stands on the west side and a six-story plaza to the east.
The tower’s rooms bear concrete walls that act as insulation to absorb loud, obnoxious sound waves capable of infuriating neighbors. On the other hand, the plaza has paper-thin walls that let every peep escape to neighboring rooms.

Each floor of the tower houses laundry facilities, though the plaza has only one facility on the third floor. Most tower residents can enjoy spectacular views of the west hills or downtown, and the majority of plaza residents can just see other buildings.

The Palladian

Just one block from campus, the Palladian is a cheap alternative to many on-campus buildings. There are 18 studios and two one-bedroom apartments within this French-style building. Water, sewer and trash are included in rent.

The Clifton House

The Clifton House rests on the southern end of the Park Blocks, providing students with a convenient location. With six studios, one two-bedroom and 23 one-bedroom units, the Clifton contains 30 apartments and a gorgeous inner courtyard. However, it is extremely popular among students and no units are currently available.