East Columbia is a very unique neighborhood due to its wetlands, open space and drainage ways combined with residential, industrial, and agricultural uses. East Columbia is surrounded by three golf courses and bordered on the north by the Columbia River. The entire neighborhood is in a managed floodplain.
Much of the area that is now East Columbia was annexed into Portland in the 1970s. What was once farmland, historically flooded land, and wetlands is now designated for low density residential, commercial, and industrial uses. East Columbia is also in the noise and height overlay zones for Portland International Airport.
Wildlife are regularly seen in the neighborhood including deer, coyote, rabbit, waterfowl, migrating flocks of birds, hawks, eagles, osprey and blue heron.
Since 1999 over 450 new homes have been built, melding new, suburban type housing with older farm house, pasture land, and large lots with older homes built in the 30s and 40s.
East Columbia has a Natural Resource Management Plan created and adopted in 1990 – the first of its kind for the City of Portland. It provides a vision of how the residents envisioned the stewardship and growth for the unique land use issues that the neighborhood faces.
The Columbia Children’s Arboretum is located just off Meadow Drive and is a natural park, maintained by a small group of volunteers and the Portland Parks Bureau. An annual picnic is held in the park each July.
The neighborhood has a nine member board, elected for two year terms. Neighborhood meetings are held the second Tuesday of every month from 7-8:30pm at the Columbia Community Church, 410 NE Marine Drive. A monthly neighborhood newsletter is emailed, and distributed throughout the neighborhood.