Our city, then and now: Beaverton’s 1960s Building Boom

Our city, then and now: Beaverton’s 1960s Building Boom



The 1960s thriving national economy produced strong growth, especially in the construction sector.  Business was likewise booming in Beaverton, population approaching 19,000 at decade’s end, as several new commercial structures went up.  Among them were Riviera Motors Volkswagen dealership on Western Avenue and 5th Street, Burger King at the “Y” between Canyon Road and Broadway Street, and Royal Motor Inn on Canyon Road in the center of town.

Sisters of St. Mary of Oregon built the Maryville Nursing Home on Farmington Road, responding to a need for ongoing elder care. The 80-bed facility offered private, semi-private, and four-bed rooms.

Sunset Lanes Bowling Center opened on 3.5 acres on Walker Road near Cedar Hills Boulevard.  The 36-lane facility had up-do-date features that included eight billiard tables, pro shop, playroom, and a banquet room.   Workers began site preparation for a new 32,000 square foot Safeway between Canyon Road and Broadway Street, near Lombard Avenue.

The first building in the newly established Sunset Science Park was completed.  Electro Scientific Industries, Inc. moved several departments to the 100-acre industrial site situated between Sunset Highway and Cornell Road, west of Murray Boulevard. The Portland manufacturer of precision electrical measuring instruments   expected to attract research and development companies.

Federal and local officials dedicated the new post office on 1st Street and Betts Avenue, relocating from leased headquarters. The 18,000 square foot building was four times larger than the old one with features to better serve the community:  bigger lobby, different mailboxes, and additional loading bays.

The vigorous growth of suburbia that began in the late 1940s and 1950s continued briskly.  Shopping centers, middle class single-family houses, and large housing developments brought additional residents and economic affluence. There would be no going back.  Beaverton and Washington County were forever changed.


For more information, visit us at www.historyofbeaverton.org, email info@historyofbeaverton.org or call 971-329-9861.