Photo: Portland Parks & Recreation / Courtesy
the world famous Mill Ends Park is in a new location after the city of Portland, in Oregon, will complete nearby bike and sidewalk improvements on one of its major thoroughfares.
The completion of a road construction project in Oregon resulted in the return of the world’s smallest park, now standing about 6 inches from its previous location.
Mill Ends Park, a small green space in the median of Portland’s Naito Parkway, received its first plants and its name from the Oregon Journal reporter dick fagan.
In 1946, Dick Fagan returned from World War II to resume his journalistic career at the Oregon Journal. His office, on the second floor of Front Street (now Naito Parkway), gave him a view not only of the busy street, but also of an unused hole in the median where a utility pole would be placed.
When no posts came to fill this hole, weeds took over the space. Fagan decided to take matters into his own hands and plant flowers.
And he started a tradition in Portland that continues to this day.
Fagan wrote for years a popular column called Mill Ends (rough and irregular pieces of wood left over from sawmills). He used this column to describe the park and the various “events” that occurred there.
Fagan called the space the “smallest park in the world.” The park opened on St. Patrick’s Day in 1948 as Fagan was a good Irishman. He continued to write in the newspaper about activities at the park until his death in 1969.
After Mill Ends officially became a Portland city park on St. Patrick’s Day in 1976, the park continued to be the site of St. Patrick’s Day festivities.
And then it became a world famous landmark as the smallest park in the world when it received recognition from Guinness World Records in 1971.
The small park was demolished as part of the Portland Office of Transportation’s Better Naito Forever project, but Portland Parks & Recreation announced that Mill Ends Park has now been rebuilt about 6 inches from its previous location.
The park, which is approximately 2 feet wide with a total area of 452 square inches, has a new sign and a new cloverleaf-shaped park border.
His exact address is: SW Naito Parkway and Taylor St. Portland, Oregon 97204
Portland Parks & Recreation said officials hope to hold a “rededication ceremony” for the park in the near future.