Digital Collaboration: Designing During COVID-19

By Michelle Vo, Vice President

Working in isolation is a strange feeling for architects and designers. Our discipline is, forgive the pun, built on the concept of iteration: sharing and critiquing ideas, revising our work, learning from one another, and turning moments of inspiration into viable designs solutions. At its best, the practice of design causes a buzz of excitement and collaboration; in our most frustrated moments, the support of colleagues to critique and question our work can make all the difference in driving ourselves to dig deeper for innovative solutions.

Though the Hennebery Eddy team is working remotely, we definitely aren’t isolated. In fact, we became a fully remote workforce in a single business day and smoothed out minor wrinkles in about a week. To do so, we drew from lessons learned by our aviation projects team, which has a field office at Portland International Airport (PDX), and digital collaboration with partner architectural firms in Denver, Chicago, and the Bay Area and other consultants across the United States and internationally.

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Make Others Successful: Hennebery Eddy Announces 2020 Promotions

Firm expands leadership team and promotes design, marketing and administrative personnel

The addition of three principals at Hennebery Eddy Architects brings its leadership team to eight, a move that supports the firm’s steady and significant increase in project scale and scope and number of employees. Architects Andrew Smith, AIA, Kyle Womack, AIA, and Will Ives, AIA, were named principals, recognizing their ongoing design and operational contributions. The firm also named principal Michelle Vo, AIA, a vice president of the firm, joining officers Timothy Eddy and Alan Osborne.

“Our firm has grown significantly over the past several years. Scaling up our leadership team accordingly is very important and will help us to continue to excel going forward,” said Hennebery Eddy Architects president Tim Eddy.

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Hennebery Eddy Architects COVID-19 Procedures (Updated)

Updated 6/14/2020: In compliance with Oregon Gov. Kate Brown’s “Stay Home, Save Lives” order and restrictions in place for Multnomah County, Hennebery Eddy has extended the measures outlined below indefinitely. Be well, and stay safe.

At Hennebery Eddy, we are committed to supporting the health of our staff, families, business partners, and the greater community. In response to public health guidelines surrounding COVID-19, we have implemented the following provisions to enable us to continue providing a high level of service in these evolving circumstances.

  1. Hennebery Eddy staff members are working remotely until further notice.
  2. All Hennebery Eddy-coordinated meetings will be conducted as phone/video conferences.
  3. Where possible, we will encourage the use of virtual construction site visits.
  4. If in-person meetings or construction site visits are required, we will limit the number of staff in attendance and follow a set of safety procedures, including those for physical distancing.
  5. Business travel is limited and evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Staff who must travel for business will follow a set of safety procedures, including those for physical distancing.
  6. We will make the necessary personal protective equipment available to our staff for in-person meetings, site visits, and travel, including face coverings, portable barriers, sanitizer, and gloves.

We will continue to monitor public health recommendations and evaluate modifications to these provisions as appropriate.

Hennebery Eddy is dedicated to our clients, the quality of our project work, our project teams, and each other. We take to heart the value of making others successful, regardless of where we are physically working. We remain accessible via email and phone and can be reached via our main line at 503.227.4860 and the direct lines or mobile numbers listed on our email footers and business cards. We thank you for your patience as we collectively navigate these dynamic times.

Please contact us with questions or if you require any assistance, and be well.

Staff Inspire High School Students Through Architecture Industry Mentorship

Architect Cara Wessel and interior designer Abby Cridland share about their experience volunteering with the ACE Mentor Program. The firm annually sponsors and enables staff to participate in this architecture industry mentorship as part of our Hennebery Eddy Gives program.

Cara (standing left) explains architectural design concepts to students during a mentor session in the Hennebery Eddy office.

Describe how the ACE program works.

Cara: ACE is an after-school program for high school students interested in Architecture, Construction and Engineering. Students are placed on teams and collaborate on a building design project under the mentorship of industry professionals from each of the three disciplines. Over the course of 12 meetings, the students learn about different phases of design through presentations, hands-on activities, and construction site visits. The mentors guide the students to complete their design project and present it at the end-of-year program.

Abby: These students are from all over the Portland metro area and are grouped together to create their own project. I even had a student who traveled from Jefferson County — that’s almost a three-hour drive! Each ACE session is hosted at a mentor’s office. This gives students a sense of not only how we work but were we work, helping make what they are learning more real.

What was your goal for the students in ACE?

Cara: I wanted to inspire the students and demonstrate the immense impact they can have on the built environment and the surrounding community.

Abby: My goal was to teach them about teamwork and communication: how it’s not up to a single person or discipline to make all of the decisions for a project, and all of the disciplines have to communicate for a project to be successful. I also wanted to teach the students there are multiple avenues in the ACE industry. I am the only interior designer in the ACE Mentor Program, so I show students how important it is to look at the interior of the building, the psychology of space, and different design principles to make building users comfortable.

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Building the Future of Historic Preservation: Teaching a Course on Building Preservation Plans

Nestled on a hilltop above Skyline Boulevard in Southwest Portland, the Aubrey Watzek House sits quietly, almost as a suspended moment of early modernism just minutes from downtown Portland. The Watzek House, designed by renowned Oregon architect John Yeon and built in 1937, is his masterpiece in wood and the precursor to Pacific Northwest Regional Modernism. The house is now owned by the University of Oregon’s College of Design.

This famous house has carefully articulated use guidelines — and designation as a National Historic Landmark and a local City of Portland landmark. But the house, like any aging structure, is showing its susceptibility to age and the Pacific Northwest elements. While a roof replacement is planned for the short term, the Watzek House requires a long-term preservation plan that takes a proactive approach to anticipating, planning for, and implementing maintenance and repairs that retain the historic building’s integrity. A comprehensive look at the building’s current condition, use, and its future is also long overdue. This need is the impetus behind a graduate-level historic preservation planning course taught by principal David Wark and associate Carin Carlson at the University of Oregon’s School of Architecture & Environment Historic Preservation Program.

A group of historic preservation planning students stand on the lawn outside of a the Aubrey Watzek House, an example of Pacific Northwest regional Modernism.
Students outside the Aubrey Watzek House in Portland, Ore.

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Hennebery Eddy Architects Hires CFO; Associate Principal Named to City of Portland Historic Landmarks Commission

Hennebery Eddy Architects CFO Kim Davis and associate principal Andrew Smith, AIA,
CFO Kim Davis, and associate principal Andrew Smith, AIA

Hennebery Eddy Architects has welcomed Kim Davis as its Chief Financial Officer and Business Manager. Davis brings more than 20 years of professional accounting, finance, and operations leadership, including financial analysis and reporting, forecasting, budgeting, and financial modeling. She manages and implements strategic and day-to-day business and financial operations of the firm. Working closely with the leadership team, she is responsible for financial administration and management, firm-wide project financial management oversight, corporate operations, risk management, and oversight of the firm’s administrative team and human resources.

“Kim’s experience and skills are a strong match for the firm as we shape our strategic plan for Hennebery Eddy’s ongoing evolution and growth,” said Tim Eddy, FAIA, firm president.

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A week in the life of a Carleton College extern

By Karen Chen, Carlton College extern

Each year, the firm hosts an “extern” from Carleton College. These are undergraduate students who may be interested in pursuing design studies and architect careers, and their 1-2 weeks here are designed to give them a taste of every aspect of our profession. Our most recent extern, Karen Chen, shares reflections from her November externship. Her post has been slightly edited for brevity.

Karen Chen, right, with her externship homestay host at Portland’s Tilikum Crossing bridge.

I had the privilege and pleasure of being dipped into the professional sphere of architecture for a week at Hennebery Eddy Architects. During the externship application process, I was attracted to Hennebery Eddy’s demonstrated core values of innovative design, responsive service, and the obligation that firm members take ownership in their work. They aligned with my developing interests in art, STEM, and environmental and social justice — what would be more complementary than a discipline that uses considerations in aesthetics and physical function to create structures for people to inhabit in the real world?

I was exposed to an eye-opening, informative slice of the architectural industry and what professional life entailed. I gleaned a ton of knowledge and insight about architect careers simply through watching and talking with architects in various roles. Through shadowing, observing meetings, and conversations, I have a firmer handle on topics like entrance into the field, schooling, school-to-career transitions, internships, and career and job development. I both sat in on meetings about projects and accompanied architects who had volunteered to take me to tours of those project sites, including the Clackamas County fire stations, the new PDX terminal, a commercial renovation at Columbia Square, a factory cafeteria, and community college buildings.

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Merry + Bright: A Hennebery Eddy Holiday

It’s a festive and fun Friday in the Hennebery Eddy studio when we break out the holiday headgear, don our ugly sweaters, and celebrate the season and our staff. This year, our winter quarterly all-staff lunch featured an Italian feast and homemade eclair cake (yum). We launched the first round of HEA Connections, a program designed to foster new relationships among our ever-growing staff. Promotions were announced, recognizing the contributions of new firm associates and associate principals — and everyone got to enjoy a little envelope revealing a year-end bonus.

The giving extended to the community, as we wrapped up our office food drive for the Oregon Food Bank and shared the annual “principals gift,” a donation on behalf of individual staff members to a nonprofit organization in the name of our five principals; this year, we pitched in $1,600 for Friends of the Children. A white elephant gift exchange brought out the wacky, weird, and wonderful. And to top it all off, the famous Hennebery Eddy Elf Cart delivered treats throughout the office.

We hope your holidays are filled with just as much good cheer — and all of us at Hennebery Eddy Architects wish you a happy holidays and prosperous new year!

Photos from our annual holiday festivities and a snippet from our 2018 holiday card