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Season 5 FinalistThe Dalles, OR

About the Town

Known to some as the town at the end of the Oregon Trail, The Dalles is located just over an hour from Portland on the banks of the Columbia River. Small businesses are vying for foot traffic, despite nearly 20,000 annual visitors who arrive on tour boats. The surrounding area is home to multiple cherry orchards, which is another draw for tourists, along with year-round recreation like camping, fishing, and hiking.

Formerly a large industrial area, much of the commercial real estate is too large for small businesses, leaving them without viable options for a brick and mortar location. With a population of approximately 14,000, residential real estate is also a challenge due to high demand and minimal inventory. In an effort to offset this housing imbalance and drive more locals downtown, The Dalles is hoping to convert the upper levels of its downtown buildings into apartments, ultimately making the main street more livable and walkable.

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