BY BRIAN LIBBY
Historic Multi-Family Housing of NW Portland Tour
Northwest Portland’s Alphabet District is often thought of for its beautiful mansions, but as this Architectural Heritage Center tour demonstrates, it also has a substantial collection of multifamily housing. The Couch family built some of the earliest upscale rental units, and in the 1920s Elmer Feig became well known for his Northwest Portland apartment designs. A housing crunch during World War II additionally led to the conversion of many classic homes into multi-family units. 6PM Thursday, July 3. $20 ($12 for AHC members).
East Portland/Grand Avenue Historic District Tour
Along Grand Avenue, once the main commercial spine in the original and separate city of East Portland, lies a diverse mix of architecture from Italianate to Art Deco. Among the many buildings, including a few hidden gems, on this Architectural Heritage Center tour you’ll learn about the well-known Barber Block, a one time mortuary, as well as West’s Block, the oldest building on Grand Avenue and home of the Architectural Heritage Center. 10AM Saturday, July 5. $20 ($12 for AHC members).
South Park Blocks Tour
The eleven-block downtown area surrounding the South Park Blocks was first platted and donated to the City in 1852 as part of a plan by the legendary Olmsted brothers. It transformed a fire break parcel into the most desirable residential area of its day, complete with schools, playgrounds, stately homes and places of worship. This Architectural Heritage Center tour strolls through the groves of elms and recounts much of the area’s history and architecture. The South Park Blocks stand alone as a place of revitalization, refreshment and cultural allure. 10AM Sunday, July 6. $20 ($12 for AHC members).
ForWARD Networking Breakfast
The Forum for Women in Architecture and Related Design (ForWARD) provides programming and community for the diverse group of women involved in the built environment. ForWARD sponsors events throughout the year: speakers, building tours, panel discussions, and more, allowing members to network across disciplines, explore design related interests, and mentor one another. ForWARD is open to all disciplines of building, design and related topics, and all events are open to the public. 8AM Tuesday, July 8 (location to be determined). Free.
COTE Greenbag: The Human Side of High Performance Buildings
As we create ever more energy-efficient buildings, the impact of occupant behavior comprises up to 40 percent of a building’s total energy consumption. To meet the net-zero energy goals of the American Institute of Architects' 2030 Challenge, building occupants are increasingly being asked to change both their expectations of building comfort and their energy-use behavior. But in doing so, do we risk creating buildings that sacrifice functionality for energy performance? This AIA Committee on the Environment presentation by Erica Dunn and Green Hammer will discuss best practices for meeting or exceeding user expectations for thermal comfort and function while also meeting aggressive energy goals. The presentation will also focus on successful strategies for educating and engaging users, designing for preferred occupant behavior, and planning for user turnover. AIA Center For Architecture, 403 NW 11th Avenue. 12PM Wednesday, July 9. Free.
An Evening with the Olmsteds
Best known for designing New York City's Central Park, Frederick Law Olmsted all but invented the American public park and landscape architecture as a tool for public health and social cohesion. His picturesque park planning and design defined cities from New York and Buffalo to San Francisco. The tradition continued in Portland, through his stepson, John Charles Olmsted, who designed our city's 1903 parks plan. Laurence Cotton, principal researcher of PBS’s new documentary Frederick Law Olmsted: Designing America (which screens prior to the event, at 4:30), will be joined by local architects and historians Henry Kunowski and William Hawkins (whose great uncle collaborated with Olmsted on the design of Terwilliger Parkway) for excerpts from the documentary and an overview of the Olmsteds’ impact on Portland. Portland Art Museum, 1219 SW Park Avenue. 6PM Wednesday, July 9. $20 ($17 for seniors and students, free for members).
King’s Hill National Register Historic District Tour
Many of Portland’s most notable late 19th and early 20th century architects designed homes in this hilly National Register Historic District, the location for this Architectural Heritage Center tour. The neighborhood is also known for its wonderful landscape architecture, serving as a gateway to Washington Park. 6PM Thursday, July 10. $20 ($12 for AHC members).