The Portland Building reconstruction was designed to put people first, which was a core tenet of the Postmodernism movement. Updating this building to keep it relevant – to keep it safe and healthy – could be a blueprint for a new type of preservation thinking.
The Portland Building was constructed during the energy crisis of the early 1980s, before building safety codes considered the impacts the Cascadia Subduction event. The design team made structural updates to the building, which allowed for more glazing along the exterior of the building. This permitted a substantially greater amount of light into the building – especially the employee floors.
Though the design and appearance of the Portland Building continues to drive debate, Portlanders seem to like their Portlandia. Special attention was paid to the care and preservation of the sculpture during the reconstruction process.
Delivering on Design Vision and Building Performance
After nearly 40 years, the exterior of the Portland Building was in need of comprehensive repairs. But how should modifications be made to one of the most recognizable pieces of architecture in the world? The design team proposes an unusual solution.