Category: Business Closing

Fire Destroys Garment Factory

A fire broke out early morning at the Portland Garment Factory located at 408 SE 79th Ave. The 1931 era building suffered a complete structural collapse of its wood structure. The masonry portion of the building remains intact, but the building’s internal structure is a total loss. Representatives from Paul Davis Restoration, who are securing the site, indicated that the whole building is likely unsalvageable and requires demolition.

Portland Fire & Rescue responded to reports of a fire around 3:30 AM Monday. They found the building engulfed in flames and worked to contain the fire from spreading. The two-story commercial building is surrounded on both sides by parking lots. A single-story building on SE 80th abuts the rear wall of the Garment Factory. Damage to that building is not apparent.

Portions of SE Stark Street, SE 80th Ave, and SE 79th Ave are closed while fire crews continue to monitor the extinguished fire and prevent flare-ups. A GoFundMe donation page was established to help Portland Garment Factory rebuild their business ( ).

Stark Street blocked by fire crews.

UPDATE – Building demolition begins on May 19th, 2021.

Riverview Bank Closing Branch

The Montavilla branch of Riverview Community Bank will close permanently on May 20th. Having commissioned the building in 2003, Riverview owns the property and has not announced plans to sell the location. This closure is the third bank to leave Montavilla within a year. Both US Bank and Chase Bank closed their Glisan Street branches.

The Riverview Montavilla branch, located at 9415 SE Stark Street, is near the I205 off-ramp and Multi-Use path. After May 20th, the bank’s members can use the Gateway branch, located 1.6 miles away at 10401 NE Halsey Street. Only one other bank exists within Montavilla’s boundary, Bank of the West, at the corner of SE 82nd Ave and Division Street. As the banking world continues to evolve, physical locations are in decline. However, the lack of banking services within the area will likely impact small businesses that rely on teller services.

Glisan Chase Bank Closed

The Chase Bank, located at 6615 NE Glisan Street, has closed. Situated inside the Fred Meyer grocery store, this branch was one of the last banks providing teller services to the neighborhood. A US Bank branch also closed on Glisan street last October.

The permanence of the branch closure is not confirmed. However, this location disappeared from the Portland branch locater page on Chase’s website. The Chase logo over the bank entrance is now gone, and the space is empty of all furniture. Last week crews removed the built-in teller windows and countertop.

Currently, Fred Meyer appears to have inventory items stored inside the space on pallets. Both Fred Meyer and Chase declined to respond to inquiries regarding this location. A remodel may be planned, but indications point to Chase Bank removing this branch from the area. Being valuable space near the entrance, Fred Meyer will likely repurpose this room sometime in 2021.

Local Foundry Supply Acquired

Since the early 1970s, Adolf’s Pattern Shop created products to support pattern makers and foundries from its building at 425 NE 80th Ave. The location closed in April of 2020 after owners Leonor and Adolf Volkmann sold to the Minnesota-based Midwest Pattern. The building is currently empty, with plans to sell or lease the property under consideration.

Adolf’s Pattern Shop quietly occupied the cinder block building with only a small sign indicating what company operated from this location. That sign is now gone, leaving an unpainted square to the left of the one front window. Despite the lack of street-side advertising, Adolf’s Pattern Shop became internationally known for supplying products for the pattern-making and metal-casting industry. The company remained family-owned for its entire time in Oregon.

The publication Modern Casting from July 9th reported on the business’s sale and provided more information on the acquisition of Adolf’s Pattern Shop. According to that article, Leonor and Adolf Volkmann began pursuing the business’s sale several years ago and came close to liquidation. Midwest Pattern was a long-time customer of the Portland company and felt it critical their products remain available to the industry. The new owners have great respect for the history that comes along with their purchase, keeping Volkmann’s career details accessible on the company website.

The building was not part of the business sale, and it remains the property of the Volkmanns. Leonor and Adolf Volkmann are the second owners of the property. They acquired it on August 23rd of 1974 from the building’s original owner Abe Ryerson. Ryerson started construction on the building in 1955.

Although Montavilla lost a manufacturing business in the neighborhood, it is likely a positive outcome for the Volkmann’s. With luck, a new business will move into that space and see the same decades-long success Adolf’s Pattern Shop had.

US Bank Branch Closing

Montavilla’s closest U.S. Bank branch is closing as part of a statewide reduction. Located at 6701 NE Glisan Street, the 1962 era branch is just outside the boundary of Montavilla. It, along with 26 other Portland branches, will close permanently on November 1st.

The Oregonian published the complete list of closures yesterday, announcing employees at those locations would lose their jobs. Many terminated employees are allowed to reapply for new roles within the company. This round of closures is a relatively large number for the Portland founded banking giant.

Safe deposit customers at this location have until December 1st to retrieve their items. Customers should call 888-713-9299 to arrange access to the safe deposit items.

United States National Bank Of Oregon owns the building on NE Glisan. It is unknown if the bank will sell the property. However, other recently closed U.S. Bank locations have sold after closing. The former branch at 3233 N Lombard Street sold this summer for $1,035,000.

The NE Glisan property spans the block’s entire width between NE 67th Ave and NE 68th Ave. Attached to this property are two full-sized residential lots fronted on NE 68th Ave. They currently provide parking for the bank. This property would be an ideal location for a multistory apartment building with some ground-floor retail. It is high on the Glisan hill, potentially providing excellent views on the upper floors. The site is adjacent to a Fred Meyer grocery store and walking distance from a Max station.

U.S. Bank customers that used this branch should consider visiting the location at 10220 SE Washington Street. Montavilla has very few banks in the area. However, the nature of banking has changed recently, thanks to technology making app-based banking more accessible. With some luck, this location will soon become a beneficial space for the community again.

1966 Stark Street Storefront for Sale

Located at 8826 SE Stark Street, the former home of Kings Hookah Lounge is for sale. This retail building has upfront parking and large windows extending across the street side of the structure. Just a few blocks east of 82nd Avenue, this location offers highly visible retail space.

The 2,556 square-foot building is listed for $749,995 by SVN Bluestone & Hockley. Before operating as a hookah lounge, Nip & Tuck offered custom pillows, cushions, bedding, drapes, and window treatments from this location. In 1994 a plumbing permit indicated this was a Grocery operated by Aziz Rolman. The building opened in 1966 by owner Bud Flor.

This property offers an attractive retail opportunity. Its parking lot could accommodate outdoor guests or food carts without too much alteration. It will be interesting to see who snatches up this building and what shop will open there.

Therm-O-Loc Relocates

A small office on NE Glisan Street sits empty. It had once been the location of Therm-O-Loc, a seller of Milgard doors and windows. Unlike other recent vacancies, this is due to expansion.

According to the Dorian Rady, owner of Therm-O-Loc, they outgrew the space on Glisan. The company recently relocated to a larger office on Airport Way. The new location is not yet open to the public. When completed, they will have a showroom for customers to visit. Their old office only allowed for a select number of samples.

Therm-O-Loc shared the space at 7920 NE Glisan Street with A to Z Blinds for over three years. The blinds company continues to operate from that location. Previously they used the whole building before subletting the small single room office to Therm-O-Loc.

It is unknown if A to Z Blinds will expand into the now vacant space or seek to sublet it once more. They remain open during the pandemic by appointment only, so more office space may not be needed. 

CrossFit Montavilla Closing

Over the weekend, CrossFit Montavilla announced they would be closing at the end of the week. The business has occupied 8040 SE Stark Street for over two years. Local businesses and customers are expressing their sentiments over the shutdown on the company’s Instagram.

According to the Instagram post announcing the closing, “COVID-19 realities” are the cause for the shutdown. Many businesses have struggled to operate profitably during the pandemic. Social distancing restrictions are more difficult for organizations that offer indoor services as they do.

CrossFit Montavilla brought many benefits to Montavilla Town through an upgraded shopfront and active customer base. Previous to CrossFit Montavilla‘s residence in the building, it was home to A-1 Foam Rubber. In its early life, Fred Meyers owned the building. Although all too short, CrossFit Montavilla’s time in the building was a positive mark on the history of that space.

Below is the text from CrossFit Montavilla’s Instagram post.

To all of our members and the Montavilla neighborhood…

We are grateful to have been given the privilege to form friendships and build community through health and fitness over the last 2.5 years Thank you for trusting us enough to invite us into your story. It has been an honor to partner with you, and to share life through daily ups and downs.

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 realities we are facing, we will be closing our doors at the end of this week.

While we grieve this loss, we have many “wins” to celebrate. First and foremost, we celebrate each friendship made and relationship built, for these are lasting and go beyond the walls of the gym.

Let’s have a great, final week of workouts together!

Last Call for Pottery Fun

Pottery Fun on Stark Street is closing permanently. All remaining items in the store are for sale, starting this weekend. The sale runs from Noon to 4 PM on both Saturday the 25th and Sunday the 26th.

Located at 7821 SE Stark Street, Pottery Fun offered craft activities creating personalized painted pottery. The sale should include many craft supplies as well as some shop fixtures. 

Closing a decades-old business is a financial and logistical challenge. Support from the community in purchasing the items from the store will help with both difficulties. Consider a final visit to Pottery Fun this weekend to say thank you. Perhaps you will also find some part of Pottery Fun you want to take home with you.

Disclosure: The author’s daughter once worked at Pottery Fun.

Coworking Space Consolidated

Collective Agency has moved out of its coworking space located at 7819 SE Stark Street. This was one of three locations for the Collective Agency, and the only one that has been permanently closed. Customers of the coworking space, called Members, will now have to relocate to another location.

All three locations have been closed during the statewide restrictions surrounding COVID-19. Alex Linsker, the owner of Collective Agency, is keeping the Member community engaged with outdoor meetups, Zoom calls, movie nights, and soon a July 4th barbecue..

Member movie night

With a tagline of Coworking Spaces with Cozy Community, being open during the age of social distancing was not an option for the small Montavilla space. The Montavilla location would have been the hardest location to reopen, and “the Montavilla community is the least tied to a physical space.” Said Linsker. Closing the Montavilla location resulted in only three Members leaving.

Starting in Phase 2 of Multnomah County’s reopening, Montavilla Members will be able to use the location at 3050 SE Division Street. The downtown location will also reopen at the same time as the Division Street location. However, they are looking to sublease the space soon.

Downtown location with new spaced out configuration

Linsker describes the Montavilla Members as being “very” support of the changes needing to be made by the Collective Agency. The consolidation of locations seems like a sound business decision. Alex Linsker is a proponent of Small in this Together and hopes for some relief for businesses affected by COVID-19 closures. Regardless of what assistance businesses receive, tough choices are required. This closure is a prime example of the tough decisions many business owners are making.

Montavilla location after closing