Portland streets are filled with wonders. Often, though, they’re the kind of things you stumble upon rather than search out.
As a software developer-turned-entrepreneur that called Portland home for two years, Jeff Reifman fell in love with the little things that made the city so distinctive. Like the 300 unique heritage trees that line neighborhoods all over town, each protected by city code. Or the Little Free Libraries, those boxes stocked with free books you find on street corners. And, of course, the colorful murals that adorn the walls of miscellaneous buildings.
So in 2018, Reifman created Portland Wild (portlandwild.com), to organize all that information in one place.
“I just thought it would be fun to create a map for people,” he said. “And it would also be a little bit of a way for me to give back to Portland for my time there.”
Portland Wild is a fusion of Google Maps and Reifman’s overlaid data, supplied by local organizations and his own meticulous mapping efforts. Hundreds of icons depicting trees, murals and libraries assemble themselves across the screen, waiting to be discovered through simplified navigation.
Reifman does his best to update the website from his new home in Seattle, though he admits that, as the number of items on the map keep growing, it’s difficult for him to keep updated. Still, for anyone looking to put together a personalized walking tour of Portland’s urban wilderness, Portland Wild makes a great starting point.
“You can’t walk around Portland and not just be blown away,” Reifman says.