Lessons Learned: THERM and an Evolution of Wall Assemblies

By Mike Meade, AIA

Mike is a senior project architect with 18 years of experience and is a member of our in-house building enclosure committee, which provides envelope resources and technical support to our project teams. He sits on the board of the Portland Building Enclosure Council and is currently working on the PDX Terminal Balancing and Concourse E Extension project, discussed at the end of this post.

I attended a training from Passive House Canada on THERM software, which was developed at the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab for evaluating heat transfer through building components. Using THERM, you can model 2-D heat-transfer effects in components at building interfaces like windows, walls, foundations, roofs, and doors. Heat-transfer analysis allows you to evaluate a product’s energy efficiency and local temperature patterns, which may relate directly to problems with condensation, moisture damage, and structural integrity.

After the training, I was hungry to share the software and give our project teams a better way to evaluate details for thermal performance. I also thought about buildings I have built over my career. I’ve worked on buildings with many types of walls — some just to meet code, some just to meet the budget, and some to create the highest possible performance. I used THERM to evaluate these assemblies to see how we fared.

R-value measures the ability to prevent heat transfer. The higher the number, the better.

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Campus Planning and Higher Education Design Expert Joins Hennebery Eddy Architects

Associate principal Jane Barker, AIA, deepens firm’s experience in higher education and academic architecture, reinforces studio’s commitment to net-positive and sustainable design

Hennebery Eddy Architects associate principal Jane Barker, AIA, higher education design expert
Hennebery Eddy Architects associate principal Jane Barker, AIA

Students, staff, and faculty at colleges and universities throughout the Pacific Northwest and along the West Coast have benefited from architect Jane Barker’s campus planning and academic project leadership. The veteran higher education architect has designed more than 700,000 square feet of classroom, residential, and community spaces on more than a dozen college and university campuses. Now, Barker is bringing her experience to Hennebery Eddy as an associate principal, reinforcing the firm’s commitment to creating high-performance, energy-efficient, and award-winning learning spaces that inspire.

“Having worked as both an owner’s representative and as a design partner, Jane is uniquely qualified to anticipate and accommodate the priorities of our clients, while continuing to push the boundaries of design-forward, sustainable solutions,” said Tim Eddy, principal and president at Hennebery Eddy. “In addition, her leadership developing design and performance standards, including systems to achieve net-zero energy, water, and waste infrastructure, and her campus planning experience dovetail with the firm’s net-positive approach to design.”

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What the Architects Architect and What Interior Designers Design: Hennebery Eddy and afo’s Architects in Schools

This spring, architect Monica Mader and interior designer Elyse Iverson volunteered as co-teachers for the Architecture Foundation of Oregon’s (afo) Architects in Schools (AIS) program. For six weeks, architectural design and engineering professionals visit elementary schools on a weekly basis, teaching a series of lessons that introduce students to various aspects of the industry and profession. Below, Monica summarizes their six-week residency at KairosPDX, a public charter school in NE Portland focused on serving low-income students and students of color.

What was your goal for the students in your AIS program?

By​ ​the​ ​end​ ​of​ ​the program, we wanted the students to ​be​ ​able​ ​to​ ​demonstrate​ ​an​ ​understanding​ ​of​ ​their​ ​own community​ ​and​ recognize​ ​valuable​ ​components of a​ ​​neighborhood​ ​in​ ​relation​ ​to​ architecture.

Students completed a self-assessment at the beginning of the program, sharing their knowledge and learning goals.

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Portland’s Proposed URM Mandate and Historic Rehabilitation: What Building Owners Can Do Now

Regardless of whether the City of Portland adopts a mandate requiring the seismic retrofit of unreinforced masonry (URM) buildings, the realities of a probable major seismic event in the next 50 years are sobering — with life-altering, social, financial and economic implications for everyone in the region. For many building owners, a retrofit requirement may seem financially infeasible if they lack the liquidity to pay for potential retrofits and cannot secure funding from risk-averse lenders. Though it may be months or even years before the city finalizes or implements a mandate, building owners can and should start evaluating now the potential costs of seismic retrofits to protect life and property — and whether federal, state or other grant money may be applied to offset these costs.

The Vivian Apartments, historically known as the Alco Apartments, constructed in 1912 and located in NE Portland. As part of a larger renovation effort, which includes seismic reinforcement of the URM structure, Hennebery Eddy is completing Federal Tax Credit and State of Oregon Special Assessment applications for the property. Hennebery Eddy helped list the property on the National Register of Historic Places in 2016. Image courtesy of the Oregon Historical Society.

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Hennebery Eddy Architects Expands Leadership in Design-Build Project Delivery

Principal Alan Osborne named Associate Design-Build Professional™

Alan Osborne, AIA, vice president and principal at Hennebery Eddy Architects, is a certified design-build professional.

Reflecting the firm’s commitment to on-time, on-budget project delivery and design excellence, Hennebery Eddy Architects vice president and principal Alan Osborne, AIA, is now a nationally certified Associate Design-Build Professional™. Certified by the Design-Build Institute of America, Osborne aids the firm in effectively meeting industry demand for alternate project delivery. Osborne is one of only three Oregon professionals certified by DBIA in 2018.

DBIA certification is the nation’s only measurable standard of an individual’s knowledge of the Design-Build Done Right™ principles vital to successful project delivery. The certification requires comprehensive education and training and rigorous testing.

In earning his Associate DBIA certification, Osborne joins Hennebery Eddy associate principal Jon McGrew, AIA, in leading D-B initiatives for the firm. McGrew earned his Design-Build Professional certification in 2014; at that time, he was one of only two architects in Oregon with the full credential. Osborne and McGrew are active in the Oregon chapter of the DBIA.

Hennebery Eddy’s portfolio includes more than $100 million in recent private and public design-build projects. In 2016, the firm was recognized with a National Merit Award for its design-build renovation of the Oregon Department of State Lands office with Fortis Construction.

Designing for the Student User Experience: Hennebery Eddy Presents at SCUP

Two Hennebery Eddy teams presented in April at the 2018 Pacific Regional Conference of the Society of College and University Planning (SCUP), sharing takeaways from two recent academic projects, and offering participants actionable tools for their own campus planning projects.

Master Planning for Aspirational Outcomes: Rogue Community College Master Plan

A good campus master plan goes beyond infrastructure and site selection; it can impact the vision, strategy and growth trajectory of an educational institution. For Rogue Community College, Hennebery Eddy led a series of visioning workshops to plan for the future needs of the Table Rock Campus. On a compressed timeline, the team helped RCC articulate a project charter using integrated planning strategies. The team analyzed enrollment and classroom utilization data to make informed programming decisions, and conducted future vision planning, or “backcasting,” to identify a target future outcome, and work backwards to articulate the steps and processes needed to achieve that outcome.

Rogue Community College President Cathy Kemper-Pelle introduced the session, summarizing RCC’s main strategies for integrating industry partners and creating real-world work scenarios in the classroom. Gregg Sanders, associate principal and a leader in academic master planning and project management, then led SCUP session attendees through establishing a project charter, which can be used as a reference and touch point throughout the project decision-making process. He also conducted a backcasting exercise, which enables varying stakeholders to work beyond their current planning constraints and reconcile disparate goals with other decision-makers by working toward a shared vision. Interior designer Ashley Nored reviewed how the team gathered input from different user groups, accommodated RCC’s program priorities with student needs, and developed a phased plan for implementation.

Hennebery Eddy interior designer Ashley Nored chats with SCUP session attendees about the integrated master planning process.
Interior designer Ashley Nored chats with session attendees on how to make aspirational goals a reality through an integrated master planning process.

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Design Week Portland Open House

Design Week Portland is an anticipated annual event in the design community, bringing together architects, artists, makers, and creators to explore design across disciplines and scales. This year, Hennebery Eddy hosted our first DWP open house, giving attendees a chance to visit our studio and see our work — and explore resilient design in the built environment.

Resiliency and resilient design are increasingly part of the discussion among building owners, consultants, and regulatory organizations. Similarly, “The Big One” and disaster preparedness are gaining more attention in public discourse. We noticed a gap in the discussion within the broader design community and felt Design Week was an opportunity to begin making connections between industry experts and Portland citizens in addressing these complex issues.

Guests were greeted by hand-drawn map of predicted earthquake ground shaking for the Portland metro area (magnitude 6.8).

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Portland Art Museum selects Hennebery Eddy Architects as Architect of Record for museum renovation & expansion

The Portland Art Museum has selected Hennebery Eddy Architects as the Architect of Record for the museum’s renovation and expansion to provide enhanced access to the museum for people of all ages, including those with disabilities.

The project is currently in a due diligence, pre-design, and fundraising phase. Hennebery Eddy will collaborate with the Design Architect, Vinci Hamp Architects of Chicago, to develop the scope of work for the project and to refine design concepts first unveiled in 2015.

The art museum design concept articulates a connections-driven campus with the proposed new Rothko Pavilion at its center. More information can be found on the museum’s project website.

Earth Day: Sharing Our Net-Positive Impact Stories

How can you be a positive force in the world? What can you do to improve your community, your project, your planet, or your life? This was the topic for Hennebery Eddy’s Earth Day celebration, a festive pin-up sharing our net-positive impact stories.

In our office work, we aspire to design net-positive spaces that reflect and respond to the natural environment and the people who use them. The result is a healthy, efficient, and adaptive net-positive outcome for clients, users, and the planet. In our pin-up, we reflected on that mission — and took it a step further, by looking at our personal net-positive experiences, too.

This topic has been on our minds as we wrap up participation in another inspiring EcoChallenge with the Northwest Earth Institute and Project Drawdown. From lessons learned on our design projects, to reflections on our connection to the natural world and tips we picked up from Drawdown’s research or our own, here’s what we shared.

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Social Responsibility: Promoting Equity Through ‘Just’ Transparency Label

When you buy packaged food at the grocery store, you can check the nutrition label to see what’s inside. Similarly, Hennebery Eddy design staff research Environmental and Health Product Declaration (EPD and HPD) labels to evaluate the life-cycle environmental impacts of the building materials and finishes we specify on our projects.

And now, anyone can see “what’s inside” the business of Hennebery Eddy through our JUST label.

Hennebery Eddy received a JUST label from the International Living Future Institute; see a full-size label here

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