The New Industrial Revolution Center (NIR) will be an anchor of Portland’s emerging Innovation Quadrant in the Central Eastside Industrial District, providing space for the region’s expanding biotech industry. Hennebery Eddy is working with Summit Development Group on the biotech building design, which will provide 190,000 square feet of laboratory space and 65,000 SF of creative office and event space and shared conference rooms, along with ground-floor retail and a child care center.
The 10-story building is organized as two essentially identical towers, joined by a central circulation and mechanical core. This layout optimizes daylighting and views, contributing to healthy indoor spaces ideal for innovation. Designed for life science companies with advanced laboratory requirements, the structure accommodates efficient 11-foot-wide lab modules for both flexibility and safety.
The biotech building design is characterized by simple volumes inspired by industrial vernacular and the mass brick style of early American high-rise towers. These forms are re-interpreted with modern materials, including a light-weight weathering steel exterior skin. Porches at each level provide an outdoor connection while creating a break in the simple volumes. The innovative structure uses cross-laminated timber in a point load system — eliminating most structural beams and reducing overall building height while simplifying lab mechanical and exhaust layouts and promoting an efficient construction schedule.