The placement of Portland's Memorial Coliseum on the National Register of Historic Places means it will be harder for the city to tear down the landmark arena.
The placement of Memorial Coliseum on the National Register of Historic Places means it will be harder for the city to tear down the landmark arena, as Portland officials continue to debate the future of the facility.
Memorial Coliseum opened in 1960 and has a very unique design: four large columns hold up the roof, allowing for glass walls on four sides of the arena and an open bowl. It's an example of the Modernist design of architecture, a style rarely found in the arena world. The expansion Portland Trail Blazers began their history there; the Beatles rocked the place in 1965.
But since the Rose Garden opened Memorial Coliseum has struggled to find a niche; it now hosts smaller events that would not fill the Rose Garden, and it's now the home of the Portland Winter Hawks (WHL). The city looked at tearing down the arena to make way for a Portland Beavers ballpark, but that proposal died after local architectural advocates organized opposition to the plan.
The designation won't totally preserve the arena; it still can be altered. But it does make it harder for city officials to tear down the place. The Coliseum is still seen as part of an entertainment district encompassing the Rose Garden, but no plans have been finalized.
RELATED STORIES: Memorial Coliseum spared a date with the wrecking ball; Memorial Coliseum vote delayed as mayor adjusts site, financial plans; Portland's Memorial Coliseum could be goner under ballpark plan
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