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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First Annual ‘Net-Positive Awards’ Recognize Sustainable Design Excellence

net-positive energy design awards Hennebery Eddy Architects

In 2018, Hennebery Eddy placed No. 31 on the Architect 50 – a ranking of the top 50 firms in the country – bolstered by our strong showing in the sustainable design category. Our net-positive philosophy and design approach landed us at No. 11 in that category.

We aspire to design net-positive solutions through healthy, efficient, and adaptive spaces that are responsive to our clients, the environment, and the people who use them.

To recognize our project teams’ achievements in healthy, efficient, and adaptive (HEA) design, 2018 also saw us launch an “HEA Net-Positive Awards” program for projects that recently completed design or construction. The 12 entries ranged in size, market, and style and featured net-positive stories that included innovations in daylighting, careful use of mindful materials, historic preservation, and impressive energy use reduction. A panel of five judges from among our staff honored the following projects.

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Restore Oregon’s DeMuro Award Honors Chapman Hall for Exceptional Historic Rehabilitation

Hennebery Eddy’s rehabilitation of the c.1939 Chapman Hall at the University of Oregon garnered a 2018 DeMuro Award from Restore Oregon, a nonprofit that advocates for preservation and reuse of historic structures. The DeMuro Awards honor extraordinary historic rehabilitation projects across Oregon, recognizing the creativity, persistence, and craftsmanship required by outstanding restoration projects.

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Historic Preservation Internship at Hennebery Eddy

Hennebery Eddy hosted two interns this summer, both of whom are working on Master of Architecture degrees from the University of Oregon – Portland focused on historic preservation. In the second of this two-part series, Shannon Hines shares highlights from her historic preservation internship and takeaways from her time with the firm. Click here for Michael Moran’s experience.

Historic preservation intern Shannon visits the construction site for Clackamas Fire District Station 16 - not a historic project, but definitely part of a well-rounded Hennebery Eddy internship!
Shannon visits the construction site for Clackamas Fire District Station 16 – not a historic project, but definitely part of a well-rounded Hennebery Eddy internship!

Throughout school, I have had an interest in the historic preservation side of architecture and have taken both architecture and historic preservation classes at the University of Oregon – Portland. I first learned about Hennebery Eddy through one of my architecture studios when Tim Eddy came to talk with us about the Albina Vision effort the firm had been working on and learned more when Josette Katcha came into a historic preservation class to talk about her role as a specialist in the firm’s historic resources group. This was how I learned about Hennebery Eddy’s strong historic preservation expertise. This interested me because I would be able to combine my studies in a professional setting.

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Interning with Hennebery Eddy’s Historic Resources Group

Hennebery Eddy hosted two interns this summer, both of whom are working on Master of Architecture degrees from the University of Oregon – Portland focused on historic preservation. In this two-part series, Michael Moran and Shannon Hines share highlights from their historic preservation internship and takeaways from their time with the firm. Read on for Michael’s experience, and click here to read about Shannon’s internship.

Michael Moran, left, and Shannon Hines, far right, completed historic preservation internships this summer with the Historic Resources Group at Hennebery Eddy Architects.
Michael Moran, left, and Shannon Hines, far right, interned this summer with the Historic Resources Group at Hennebery Eddy Architects.

I was first introduced to Hennebery Eddy through my second studio at U of O in Portland. We adopted Hennebery Eddy’s Albina Vision urban design concept and focused on the design of a cultural building that would connect the Rose Quarter to the Willamette River by spanning a plaza over Interstate Avenue. The studio collaborated with the Portland Opera for the program. It was great to have Tim come in to present the urban vision, and to have such an aspirational framework to provide inspiration for our designs. I like the philosophy of the firm, especially the commitment to thinking about the long-term life of a building.

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Portland Art Museum Expansion Enhances Accessibility and Connection to City

Portland firm Hennebery Eddy Architects draws on local urban design, regulatory and historic preservation experience, collaborates with Chicago-based Vinci Hamp Architects for design of Rothko Pavilion

Sketch of one conceptual option for the Rothko Pavilion. The design supports the museum’s goals of new and enhanced art, program and public space.
Sketch of one conceptual option for the Rothko Pavilion.

The Portland Art Museum and its acclaimed collections will become more accessible to both visitors and passersby through the design of its new Rothko Pavilion. The pavilion, an addition announced in 2016, will connect the Museum’s existing Main and Mark buildings and add 30,000 square feet of community and exhibition space. The updated expansion design concept incorporates the existing Madison Street passageway between 10th and Park Avenues into a sheltered, public passageway with views into the community commons and Museum gallery spaces. Portland architecture firm Hennebery Eddy Architects is collaborating with Chicago-based Vinci Hamp Architects on the design; their work evolves the original 2015 concept to advance the museum’s goals of new and enhanced art, program and public space, and increased accessibility within and through the museum, as well as support Portland’s urban landscape.

“This expansion is an exciting opportunity to add and improve spaces for art and education as well as increase access to the renowned cultural treasures and programs of the Portland Art Museum,” said Brian Ferriso, The Marilyn H. and Dr. Robert B. Pamplin Jr. Director and Chief Curator of the Museum.

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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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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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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.