Community Service: Volunteering with Portland’s ReBuilding Center

Portland’s ReBuilding Center is a community development resource that uses building and remodeling materials to create positive outcomes in the Portland area.

As part of their DeConstruction program, crews glean reusable materials from demolition sites, salvaging about 85% of a building’s parts. These materials are taken to a re-processing lot, where volunteers remove nails, screws, staples, and the like.

The ReBuilding Center then uses this lumber in the construction of tiny homes for the houseless, as instruction material for their award-winning ReFind Education Program, or for re-sale in the ReBuilding Center’s public store at 40-90% off market value. It’s the triple bottom line of sustainability in action — environmental, economic, and social — and that’s the kind of community service we get behind.

As part of the firm’s annual Day of Service participation on Martin Luther King Day, our in-house Sustainability Committee organized a group volunteer shift at the processing lot. We liked it so much, we’re headed back on President’s Day for a second shift.

Hennebery Eddy pays for staff to volunteer up to 8 workday hours on MLK Day (or President’s Day) with an organization of their choice. Beyond our group activity, our staff also helped plant trees, weatherized homes for seniors, and lent a hand at local schools. These efforts are part of our net-positive philosophy in creating a better community around our business.

Hennebery Eddy Architects to Design New Bonneville Power Administration Fleet Services Building

Firm will draw upon its proven track record to deliver sustainable building design and safer industrial work site for agency’s new Ross Complex facility

Bonneville Power Administration employees at the utility’s Ross Complex are getting a safer, simpler and more efficient workplace. The power utility that services more than seven states and 300,000 square miles across the Pacific Northwest has selected Hennebery Eddy Architects to lead a major facilities upgrade at its Ross Complex in Vancouver, Wash. When complete, the site will include distinct zones for heavy equipment, personal vehicles, bicycles and pedestrians, and a new 45,000-square-foot fleet services building with separate repair and administrative spaces.

Presently, equipment that is too large or complex to maintain at BPA’s regional heavy mobile equipment maintenance (HMEM) facilities must return to the Ross Complex for maintenance and repairs. While the existing fleet services building houses the appropriate repair tools, none of its nine service stalls include pull-through bays, and the ceiling height prevents indoor repair of some specialized fleet vehicles. This requires some service to be performed outdoors, causing delays and increasing risk of injury due to inclement weather.

The new building design will accommodate the disassembly and indoor repair of extending heavy equipment in 10 pass-through bays. The entire service area, oriented along a single east-west building axis, will reduce vehicle repositioning and organization time with pass-through bays, putting regional equipment back in the field more quickly. The building’s north-south circulation axis will house administrative and break spaces and serve as an access barrier to the service section of the facility. Upon completion of the new building, the existing 20,000-square-foot art deco-era fleet services facility will be repurposed by BPA.

BPA’s new fleet services building will be designed to perform efficiently to reduce ongoing operations and maintenance costs and conserve resources. The project is the agency’s first CM/GC effort. Hoffman Construction is serving as general contractor, with structural, civil, mechanical/electrical, and geotechnical engineering from Equilibrium Engineers, KPFF Consulting Engineers, Systems West Engineers and GRI and landscape architecture from Lango Hansen.

Click here for the full release.

Construction Specifications, Certifications & the In-House Spec Writer

An experienced, well-rounded architect knows that good architecture goes beyond design itself. Successful buildings – those that serve their occupants well and are constructed of high-quality materials able to stand the test of time – incorporate the specialized expertise of a specifications writer. An often overlooked and increasingly outsourced position, the spec writer is an invaluable member of the in-house design team. In this post, Associate Principal Alexander Lungershausen, AIA, CSI, CCS, CCCA, LEED BD+C, explains the role of the construction specifications writer, the benefits of having in-house expertise, and yes, what all the letters after his name actually mean.

 

How/why did you become involved in CSI Portland?

As an architect, I’ve always had an inherent interest in the technical aspects of the profession and how they influence design. I was originally educated in Germany, where the technical side of this industry is as highly regarded and taught as the artistic side. In 2001, a colleague in the office where I was working invited everyone to attend technical presentations put on by CSI Portland. I began to attend these presentations regularly, and eventually became the specifications writer at that firm. I also became more and more involved with CSI, becoming a committee leader and then a board member. While drawings tell you where elements are in a building’s design, specifications tell you what  those elements are. Specifications control the quality and the workmanship in the execution of a project.  A building that is assembled well performs well, which leads to return commissions.

In-house specifications writer at Hennebery Eddy Architects examining architectural drawings at a desk.

 

What led to you pursue certification as a CCS and CCCA?

Initially I became a Certified Document Technologist (CDT). That certification demonstrates an understanding of the documents and the relationships between all the parties who are involved in the construction of a project. Passing the CDT exam is a prerequisite for CSI’s advanced certifications.

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Restoring Community, Livability and Equity: Albina Vision

Throughout Portland’s history, the area now known as the Rose Quarter has seen significant transformation. These drastic changes, while beneficial to specific uses and groups, have often carried significant consequences, including decades of displacement – the uprooting of thousands of residents and small business owners, many of them Black or other minorities. Today, the Rose Quarter serves as an efficient events district, absorbing and releasing large surges of visitors. However, during non-event days and times, the district is vacant — an uninhabitable island within the city.

When Hennebery Eddy was invited to help develop a physical and economic vision for the district, we recognized the opportunity to use design to reflect the needs, goals and aspirations of a community, convey possibilities for integrating the district into the city, and incorporate the relationships and connections to nearby sites, prompting community conversation and input.

Rendering of plaza concept for Albina Vision urban planning effort in Portland, Oregon. Couple walking along open space with building on horizon.

 

A group of engaged citizens and community leaders collaborated over six months, conducted five in depth work sessions to review the history of the district, its current configuration and status, the range of prior proposals and current studies under way, articulate values and develop a physical framework for the future. Supported by project leader Zari Santner and Hennebery Eddy Architects, and with economic analysis by Abe Farkas, the work sessions brought together people with a depth of knowledge about Portland, urban planning and development, finance, and community interest. These advocates of the city were given no specific development agendas, free to establish their own standard of a successful outcome.

The resulting Albina Vision is not prescriptive, but rather is a framework to foster the growth of a diverse, sustainable, urban district – on par with great neighborhoods of the world. It includes short, mid- and long-term goals, considerations and aspirations that address transportation infrastructure, the built environment, and what it means to foster a diverse, sustainable community.

For more site plans and conceptual renderings, visit the Albina Vision project page. Press coverage includes articles in The Skanner and DJC Oregon (login required).

Holiday Greetings

As 2017 draws to a close, we’re filled with gratitude for a year of projects that have reached significant milestones; strong new and long-standing relationships with building owners, contractors, and vendors; and colleagues who are a joy to work with. We celebrated the firm’s 25th anniversary, welcomed new staff, and cheered each others’ achievements — and anticipate all that 2018 will bring.

From all of us at Hennebery Eddy Architects, happy holidays!

Pictured: Snaps from our quarterly all-office lunch, white elephant gift exchange, and annual “Elf Cart” festivities

Hennebery Eddy Architects Hires Three

New staff members deepen firm’s architectural, interior design and historic preservation expertise

Hennebery Eddy new staff members Meeghan Hart, Josette Katcha, and Rebecca Driscoll
L-R: Meeghan Hart, AIA; Josette Katcha; Rebecca Driscoll

Hennebery Eddy Architects, Inc., welcomed three staff members to the firm this summer, expanding its architectural and project teams.

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Hennebery Eddy renews Sustainability at Work Gold certification

When you visit our studio, there are a few things you likely won’t find around our workspace or conference rooms – items such as plastic water bottles, paper plates, or disposable cutlery. The absence of these single-use items is intentional. As a business committed to sustainability, we strive to make the most environmentally aware choices when it comes to our design work, material selection, and our day-to-day operations.

Wood plaque showing Sustainability at Work Gold certification for Hennebery Eddy Architects

As we know from the EcoChallenge, the cumulative effect of many small choices is powerful and impactful, and for Hennebery Eddy, they’ve resulted in our Gold certification as a Sustainability at Work business, a designation awarded by the City of Portland. We first applied for the three-year certification in 2014 and successfully completed the re-certification process in October. The Sustainability at Work program awards points for 50 different criteria in the categories of Reduce/Reuse/Recycle, Employee Engagement, Transportation, Energy, Water, and Community Engagement, as well as additional “actions” organizations can self-report. Bronze, Silver, and Gold designations are made based on the total points accrued from all categories.

Beyond the criteria outlined by the City of Portland Sustainability at Work program, at Hennebery Eddy we embrace the following business practices that contribute to a healthier environment:

  • An organized “net positive committee” of employees facilitates and implements on-going sustainability efforts and education within the firm
  • 100% of our design staff are LEED accredited
  • Became a JUST™ organization through the International Living Future Institute
  • A net-positive design approach is one of our core areas of expertise
  • Participate in NWEI’s EcoChallenge; for the last four years, we have finished in the top 10 teams out of more than 600
  • Offer employees a secure, sheltered bike storage room with shower
  • Our vendor food policy prohibits “box lunches” and encourages family-style meals without the use of paper plates and other disposable serving items
  • Offer a robust in-office composting program in addition to recycling
  • Transitioning much of our technology hardware to energy-efficient models

We are proud to be a Gold Sustainability at Work company and hope that our certification will inspire other organizations to participate in the program.

 

Yellowstone National Park Youth Campus receives Architecture 2030 Award from AIA Portland

Hennebery Eddy is pleased to share that it has received an Architecture 2030 Award from AIA Portland for the design of Yellowstone National Park Youth Campus.

The project is pursuing both the Living Building Challenge Certification and Passive House Certification. These complementary certifications are based on actual performance and provide an organizational framework for tracking and ensuring the highest standard of design, detailing, construction, and operations. Upon completion, the project would be the first in a national park to achieve both certifications. The new Yellowstone Youth Campus is aspirational in seeking to set a new standard for design and sustainability within our national parks.

Yellowstone National Park Youth Campus daytime rendering of back of commons by Hennebery Eddy Architects
Rendering of the back of the commons building, one of 10 buildings on the campus of the Yellowstone National Park Youth Campus. Image copyright Hennebery Eddy Architects.

Beyond achieving the programmatic goals of growing youth programs, the campus will serve as both a teaching tool and a gateway to Yellowstone National Park for youth nationwide. The campus – comprising 10 buildings – will serve as the future home for multiple youth programs currently operating in Yellowstone. Inspired by the dramatic landscape and rich cultural history of the region, campus buildings reflect a contemporary expression of vernacular architecture of the West.

This award is one of a series of accolades Hennebery Eddy has received for its sustainable design work; it has received a AIA COTE Top Ten Award and three other 2030 Challenge design awards.

The 2017 AIA Portland Architecture Award is sponsored by BetterBricks.

EcoChallenge 2017

For the fourth year in a row, Hennebery Eddy is embarking on the two-week EcoChallenge. We participate as a way of encouraging each other to take personal action and ownership in areas such as health, energy, waste, transportation and food. Many of us find that being mindful of our personal decisions, and making lower-impact choices, connects to how we practice at work. By centering personal and design decisions around our values, we’re working to build a community that is healthy and sustainable for the long term.

Hennebery Eddy employees share their 2017 EcoChallenge Commitments
Aly and Ashley share their 2017 #EcoChallenge commitments!

So how does this impact the world around us? In addition to the collective impact small changes can have, we hope our participation will encourage others to shift behaviors. According to recent research at Stanford University, if people believe that societal norms are changing, they are more likely to change as well:

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Summer Celebration on Sauvie Island

This summer, in recognition of the firm’s 25th anniversary, we expanded our annual summer event for staff members and their families into a bigger celebration. At the end of July, we closed the office for an afternoon and to explore the many activities available on Sauvie Island. From biking and hiking to berry picking and swimming, we all enjoyed the summer sunshine. In the evening, we gathered at Kruger’s Farm for an outdoor farm-to-table dinner.

Hennebery Eddy embraces the idea that the practice of architecture is a collaborative process and relies heavily on the successful work relationships between colleagues. Recognizing the people who contribute to our achievements as a firm was central to our 25th anniversary celebration, and this memorable summer event was a way to specifically thank our staff for their contributions to the firm.

View highlights of our farm-to-table dinner below, and visit our culture page to see more ways we have fun!