Trailblazing: Passage, Vancouver (Portland Metro), WA

“The Passage Across the Columbia River”


The Columbia River is the largest river in the Pacific Northwest forming a boundary between Washington and Oregon before emptying into the Pacific Ocean.  Native American tribes lived along the Columbia for an estimated 10,000 years and the first European explorers discovered the river in the 18th century while searching for trade routes. Last spring – while Pathfinder explored the Pacific Northwest – we found The Passage Apartments, a 1992-vintage apartment community in Vancouver, WA, ten miles north of downtown Portland.

The City of Vancouver is located on the Columbia River directly north of Portland and is one of the metro area’s fastest growing cities with a population of approximately 193,000. The City benefits from Portland’s diversified economy with a focus on technology, banking, real estate and financial and professional services. Vancouver is known for its high quality of life, strong employment, quality schools, no state income taxes (residents can also shop in Oregon without sales tax) and an abundance of retail, recreation and transportation options – key factors in attracting families and an educated workforce to the area.

Passage is a 104-unit, garden-style apartment with a mix of two and three-bedroom apartments averaging 1,034 square feet (very large by apartment standards) and feature in-unit washer/dryers, private patios/balconies, walk-in closets and fireplaces. Residents enjoy a community pool and spa, fitness center, lounge, game room, package locker and playground. Passage includes 186 surface parking spaces and 34 garages (220 total spaces). The property’s residential buildings are two-story and each has eight units, providing every unit with a desirable corner location.

When Pathfinder purchased Passage, we financed the acquisition with a ten-year loan at a fixed interest rate of 3.50% for seven years.  In our first year of ownership, we completed the construction of a new dog park, installed privacy fencing on all ground-floor apartments and resurfaced the pool deck. We recently commenced construction of a new built-in BBQ in the pool area and ordered new pool furniture. As we transition from spring to summer, we look forward to seeing our residents enjoy these new outdoor amenities and all that Vancouver has to offer.

Vancouver, WA: Did you know?

  • Locals have nicknamed the city “The Couve”, an abbreviated form of Vancouver.
  • In 2017, Vancouver was named the most hipster-friendly place in the U.S.
  • In 2022, Vancouver ranked as one of the best cities in the nation to work remotely.
  • Vancouver is home to the Northwest’s oldest apple tree.
  • The five-acre Esther Short Park in downtown Vancouver is the oldest public square in Washington.
  • Willie Nelson began his musical career in Vancouver while working as a radio announcer.

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