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Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Regional Sections > United States > Pacific West > SSP: Local Portland > Downtown & City of Portland

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  #1321  
Old Posted Jan 14, 2008, 9:23 PM
joeplayer1989 joeplayer1989 is offline
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Originally Posted by tworivers View Post
OHSU is required by contract to build a parking garage. I think it is planned for the lot against I-5 that was the staging area for tram construction. Construction is supposed to begin by 2010 or something? Possibly with affordable housing on top?

It'll be interesting to see what happens with auto access. Getting in and out of the neighborhood, even with the new access from the south that is planned, will be a challenge. The critical mass for car congestion seems to be very low, parking garages or not.

With the amount of land OHSU has to develop down there, combined with their apparently dim financial prospects, I think it'll be many, many years before we see any movement on those blocks, barring a sell-off. I think those parking lots are supposed to be gone by a certain date, but I wouldn't be surprised to see that renegotiated at some point.
i think you are underestimating south waterfront.
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  #1322  
Old Posted Jan 14, 2008, 9:24 PM
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I hope you are right.
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  #1323  
Old Posted Jan 15, 2008, 2:59 AM
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I believe the PDC bought rights to build housing on top of the OHSU garage. I can't imagine why the wouldn't.

OHSU is in transition. Since Kohler left, the new president is taking the university in a different direction, if not a new focus altogether. I think it will take three to five years for that vision to become apparent, and new construction will start thereafter. They already have $40M promised towards a new building, and from what I've heard, that will start in 2009 or 2010. A build out of 20 years seems like forever to us, but in the lifetime of the city, it isn't that much time. We were lucky to get the Pearl built so fast. I'd rather see SoWa, and the surrounding land, built over SEVERAL years so we have varying architecture, and multipurpose buildings next to each other. The slowdown in the housing market, and the refocus of the university might not be all that bad in the long term.
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  #1324  
Old Posted Jan 15, 2008, 4:23 AM
zilfondel zilfondel is offline
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Don't forget that around 30-40% of residential growth in Portland is occurring in SoWa and the Pearl...
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  #1325  
Old Posted Jan 15, 2008, 6:52 PM
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Ross Island group propels planning for urban oasis
Friends of Ross Island hope to use a “straw proposal”
Daily Journal of Commerce
POSTED: 06:00 AM PST Tuesday, January 15, 2008
BY ALISON RYAN

Half of the buildings in the city of Portland were built using sand and gravel pulled from Ross Island. Now it’s the city’s turn to give back, says a group working to plan the future of the island.

“The island gave to the city, now it’s time for the city to rebuild the island,” said Mike Houck, the executive director of the Urban Greenspaces Institute and a member of Friends of Ross Island, an ad-hoc group that’s producing ideas for the future of the Willamette River island.

Among the edgy comfort and modern-architecture-in-miniature of the South Waterfront Discovery Center last week, Houck, Audubon Society of Portland’s Bob Sallinger and Willamette Riverkeeper Travis Williams laid out the past, and potential future, of Ross Island.

The crowd – three-quarters of which, by a show of hands, were South Waterfront residents – was hooked. As Houck flipped through Rorschach-like black outlines of how the island’s form has changed in the 80 years since active mining began, the room began to buzz.

“They’ve whittled down Ross Island, as you saw, dramatically,” he said.

The bottom line for the group, according to Houck, is restoring four islands in the river, including Ross Island, to ensure their long-term ecological function. Everything else that’s part of the effort – from creating beneficial relationships between people and the island to preserving and interpreting the islands’ natural and cultural histories – flows from the restoration and management effort.

Ross Island, which Robert Pamplin Jr. in September donated to the city of Portland, is the most important ecologically, said Audubon conservation director Sallinger.

“It’s also the piece the city could accept without strings attached,” he added.

Ross Island as a public space was first floated by John Charles Olmsted, who in 1903 proposed a park in the middle of the Willamette.

“This is an idea that’s been in place for a long time,” Sallinger said.

And it’s an idea that Friends of Ross Island wants to see move forward. The group – driven by the efforts of people like Houck; Sallinger; Williams; landscape designers Christina Frank, Melissa Medeiros, Mike Faha and Mike Abbate – is planning a series of meetings with community and neighborhood groups. Ultimately, Houck said, the group will come out with a “straw proposal,” a vision for the island that’s hoped to contribute to – and speed up – the public process.

“Can you imagine a more incredible site in the heart of the city?” Houck said.
http://www.djcoregon.com/articleDeta...a-straw-propos
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  #1326  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2008, 4:32 AM
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  #1327  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2008, 6:48 AM
RED_PDXer RED_PDXer is offline
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Originally Posted by Dougall5505 View Post
I was thinking some diversity of height would be a good thing for the south waterfront. SoWa is so carefully planned that it's appearing to be incredibly sterile. There's no history incorporated in the neighborhood and every proposal occupies a full city block, like a bunch of similarly styled cakes neatly separated in a refrigerator display.

I agree that the lack of green features and affordable housing in this proposal is unfortunate, but there is at least a significant amount of ground floor retail and office space, which that are desperately needs.

Is the neighborhood association composed of Lair Hill residents as well? Wouldn't they prefer shorter buildings to preserve their views?
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  #1328  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2008, 5:31 PM
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Red_PDXer, the association does consist of the Lair Hill residents.

Dougall, thanks for the post and your updates. As a new resident of SoWa, we appreciate all the news as we are sometimes left out of the loop.

I agree that the design does not seem to meet the standards assigned by the community. Since block 49 is one of the first blocks in the district if one enters from the south, I feel it needs to be a representation of the entire community.
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  #1329  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2008, 6:56 PM
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I agree that the lack of green features and affordable housing in this proposal is unfortunate, but there is at least a significant amount of ground floor retail and office space, which that are desperately needs.
I don't think there is any office space in this building. And I agree that height diversity is good, my main concern is the overall design is truly lacking.
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  #1330  
Old Posted Jan 22, 2008, 7:51 PM
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Commission pushes Prometheus for river connection
The developer’s proposal for Block 41 doesn’t do enough to activate greenway, design panel says
Daily Journal of Commerce
POSTED: 06:00 AM PST Tuesday, January 22, 2008
BY ALISON RYAN

A tower proposal for the South Waterfront District has the Portland Design Commission – for the second time – lamenting lack of public activity and connection for the Willamette River.

“I don’t know why we don’t want to integrate our river into our lifestyle much, publicly,” Commissioner Ben Kaiser, a Portland architect, said.

The commission on Thursday reviewed designs for Block 41, a 25-story tower proposal that’s part of a six-building, multi-lot development planned by San Mateo, Calif.-based Prometheus Real Estate Group. The site is bordered by the river, Southwest Bond Avenue and Lowell and Lane streets.

A row of town houses would jag along the river side of the building, following the line of the river as it cuts south. At the building’s south edge, retail spaces would curve around an elliptical plaza that’s anticipated as an active space for both cars and pedestrians.

Use of district-standard paving materials for that walkthrough, the architectural team said, would solidify connection to the river for future pedestrians on River Parkway.

“If we wanted it to be very private,” landscape architect Carol Mayer-Reed said, “we probably would have changed materials or put a gate up.”

But still, the commission said, Prometheus’ proposal misses its shot to open up the riverfront. Prometheus has the chance, Commissioner Mike McCulloch said, to make its large parcel do more.

“Our mantra on the commission has been, look three blocks in every direction,” he said. “You own three blocks in every direction.”

The multi-block development could also shake up some of the similarity that’s emerged in the district, commissioners said.

“We’re creating this row of same height, same scale dominoes,” Commissioner Tim Eddy said.

“We have potential, with this large site that Prometheus has, to correct some of the things we’ve been doing.”
http://www.djcoregon.com/articleDeta...-doesnt-do-eno
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  #1331  
Old Posted Jan 22, 2008, 9:58 PM
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Quote:
“We’re creating this row of same height, same scale dominoes,” Commissioner Tim Eddy said.

“We have potential, with this large site that Prometheus has, to correct some of the things we’ve been doing.”
Right on.
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  #1332  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2008, 12:36 AM
zilfondel zilfondel is offline
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I'd say Prometheus don't give a shit!
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  #1333  
Old Posted Jan 23, 2008, 1:58 AM
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Use of district-standard paving materials for that walkthrough, the architectural team said, would solidify connection to the river for future pedestrians on River Parkway.

“If we wanted it to be very private,” landscape architect Carol Mayer-Reed said, “we probably would have changed materials or put a gate up.”


This right here makes me want to kick an architect between the legs...seriously 5-6 years of schooling and this is all you can come up with? Have you thought about taking up another profession besides architecture? The world would be much better if architects like this stopped practicing.
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  #1334  
Old Posted Jan 24, 2008, 9:35 PM
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Do a little research as to what Carol Mayer-Reed has done in real practice, with real projects, for 30 years, before you decide you want to "kick her between the legs".

What an incredibly asanine comment.

You talk like a practicing architect has the luxury of working in a vacuum, like in school or something.
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  #1335  
Old Posted Jan 24, 2008, 11:48 PM
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Mayer-Reed has done amazing work not the least of which is the Eastbank Esplanade. Although her statement seemed harsh, it may have been taken out of context. I've been a little 'underwhelmed' by the level of journalistic professionalism demonstrated in the DJC lately. Their story of the project on 26th and U was somewhat sensational and there were reported misquotes.
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  #1336  
Old Posted Jan 25, 2008, 6:38 AM
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block 42 being done by Prometheus is going to be apartments - it was condo/apt, then went full apartments. another 250 footer, but from what i have seen at least it does not stack up all the other portland standards.
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  #1337  
Old Posted Jan 25, 2008, 11:49 PM
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As the reporter who reported the Block 41 story...

Though I know how easy it is to use quotes out of context -- especially if they're particularly incendiary -- Carol Mayer-Reed's quote was, in fact, in context.

She'd stated what they were doing to encourage greenway access (using district-standard paving materials) and how that differed from what they would have done if they wanted to create a cozy enclave (changed materials or put up a gate). (I'm paraphrasing, here.) Pretty straightforward stuff.

And, if anyone's interested, I'm always open to chatting with people about stories over coffee or drinks. (Some of the best conversations I've had about design and development in Portland started with people who called to yell at me about something.)

Alison
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  #1338  
Old Posted Jan 26, 2008, 2:39 AM
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⇑ I wished I lived in Portland. I would take you up on your offer for a cup of coffee. I would enjoy a discussion of architecture, urban planning and how Portland fits in the picture.
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  #1339  
Old Posted Jan 29, 2008, 12:20 AM
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I am curious as to how they will give people access to the island when it is ready. Right now you need some kind of boat to get there.

Presumably they could build a connection from the trail that runs on the east side of the river.
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  #1340  
Old Posted Jan 29, 2008, 12:55 AM
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I hope that they leave it as float-only destination. I think there is something to be said for having a little piece of somewhat inaccessible wilderness(?) in the heart of the city. Put in a nice dock, perhaps a couple trails on the island, and let people paddle to it! Give some of us that are willing to work a little harder to have some adventure. I hate it when I hike up a mountain, only to find that Ihave to cross a parking lot at the top overflowing with drive-in gawkers. Kind of ruins the adventure of it all.
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