BY BRIAN LIBBY
The Institute for Sustainable Solutions at Portland State University will host a lunchtime presentation by Professor Hu Jie, director of the Tsinghua Urban Planning & Design Institute (THUDPI) in Beijing. Hu and his team at THUDPI have designed many award-winning parks and other projects across China on sites from a few acres up to many square miles in size. Before returning to China he worked at Sasaki & Associates in Boston. Hu led the team that designed the American Society of Landscape Architects award-winning Olympic Forest Park, the 1,680 acre park north of the 2008 Beijing Olympics venues. His team designed the 1,557 acre Tangshan Nanhu Eco-city Central Park, on the site of collapsed coal mines, a dump and former contaminated factory sites. The Quarry Garden in the Shanghai Botanical Garden won a 2012 ASLA honor award. According to the ASLA website, his "design approach integrates Western principles of science and engineering with traditional Chinese philosophies of art, literature and garden design. His work exemplifies interdisciplinary collaboration, integrating function, art, science and culture with sustainable strategies for resource conservation." Portland State University, College of Urban and Public Affairs, 506 SW Mill Street, Parsons Gallery. 12PM Tuesday, November 1. Free. (A second lecture will be held at Smith Memorial Student Union, 1825 SW Broadway, Room 338, at 7PM.)
Northwest Shake, Rattle and Roll: The Science of Great Cascadia Earthquakes
Recent research has shown that Oregon and Portland will undergo a massive Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake in the future, possibly topping 9 on the Richter Scale. Nationally recognized geophysicist Chris Goldfinger has studied a 10,000-year historical record of these earthquakes in marine sediments. His analysis leads him to predict that the northern Oregon coast and Portland faces a 15-20 percent chance of suffering a similar quake in the next 50 years. He has published more than 70 peer-reviewed scientific articles, and his work was featured in "The Really Big One" New Yorker article. In this City Club of Portland lecture, Goldfinger will talk about the science of these great earthquakes and discuss the odds that one will hit Portland in our lifetimes. Kells Irish Restaurant & Pub, 112 Southwest Second Avenue. 5PM Tuesday, November 1. Free.
THESIS: Architectures of Cultural Transformation
Throughout October and into the first week of November, a selection of design thesis books and projects from all six graduating classes of Portland State University's Master of Architecture program between 2011 and this year have been featured in this AIA Center For Architecture exhibition. Through a combination of rigorous research and creative exploration of a polemical issue framed as a question, thesis students discover their passion for the contribution architecture can make to the transformation of culture. The exhibit's opening-night party has been rescheduled for this next-to-last day of the show. AIA Center for Architecture, 403 Northwest 11th Avenue. 5:30PM Thursday, November 3. Free.
Shawhin Roudbari on Cultures of Ethical Community Engagement
Shawhin Roudbari is an assistant professor at the University of Colorado Boulder’s Program in Environmental Design. He is interested in better understanding activism and political engagement in the design professions, domestically and transnationally. In his dissertation, for example, he studied ways Iranian architects connected with foreign professional institutions to shape political power at home. Shawhin is working on two projects: the first is an extension of his dissertation to study ways activism is absorbed from the fringe into the mainstream of design professions. The second project, and the subject of his discussion with CPID, is a study of cultures of ethical community engagement in university programs that send architecture and engineering students to work in developing communities. This second project was recently awarded a National Science Foundation grant toward a three-year study of mechanisms of culture formation in “engineering for development” programs. Portland State University, Shattuck Hall, 1914 SW Park Avenue. 11AM Friday, November 4. Free.
The Apartment Building In Portland, 1900-1930: An Introductory Survey
In 1904, the category "apartment houses" first appeared in the Portland City Directory. While only four buildings were listed, the new term signified the emergence of a new building type, one that differed from the boarding houses, hotels, and other multi-dwelling units of the time. Within a few years, Portland's explosive growth pushed this new form of housing to be an integral part of the city's urban landscape. By 1930 there were 750 apartment buildings. In this Architectural Heritage Center lecture, Ed Teague, who heads the University of Oregon School of Architecture and Allied Arts's library, will provide an introduction to the history of Portland's apartment buildings from the early 20th century to the Depression Era. Architectural Heritage Center, 701 SE Grand Avenue. 11:30AM Saturday, November 5. $20 ($12 for AHC members).
Bright Lights: Fixing Portland Design Review
The biggest building boom in Portland history has produced a lot of new buildings that everybody has opinions about. But the only opinions that matter (beyond the architects and developers who build them) are those of the six members of Portland’s Design Review Commission and the city staff who review buildings. Architects, developers, and the public all have opinions about how well design review is working. Seldom are they favorable. The commission is too picky. The process takes too long. The buildings are still ugly. The list goes on. Meantime, the commissioners themselves—all citizen volunteers—and the city's staff are swamped by the boom. In this Brite Lights talk, host Randy Gragg of the University of Oregon's John Yeon Center will speak with the City's consultant, Mark Hinshaw, a Seattle-based urban designer and writer, who will compare Portland to the best practices in places like Austin, Denver, and Seattle. Henshaw and Gragg will be joined by former Design Review Commission chairman Mike McCulloch for an evening discussion about the good, bad, and ugly of current Portland architecture and what the role of government should be in making it better. Jimmy Mak’s Jazz Club, 221 NW 10th Avenue. 6PM Monday, November 7. Free.
The Green Champion Summit
Will our buildings provide safe harbor from the impacts of climate change and natural disasters? Global climate change brings an increasing number of mega storms, drought, landslides, fires, and temperature extremes to the Northwest. The Pacific Northwest is also vulnerable to unexpected earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions. Whether buildings can stand through these events is of great concern, but we should be asking if they can continue to provide shelter and basic necessities after the storm as well. Local design professionals including Mark Tobin of KPFF, Carmen Merlo of the City of Portland's Bureau of Emergency Services and Kyle Andersen of GBD Architects will share how they have incorporated both sustainability and resiliency into the designs of local buildings. AIA Center for Architecture, 403 Northwest 11th Avenue. 5:30PM Wednesday, November 9. $35 ($25 for AIA members, $15 for associate AIA members, $10 for students).
Speed Education: Featured Product Day
Learn about numerous products in condensed presentations from up to eight vendors, including Portland Millwork, the Oregon Concrete & Aggregate Producers Association, Cascade Coil, Durolast, Pacific Window Tinting, ASSA ABLOY, and Versatile Wood Products. AIA Center for Architecture, 403 Northwest 11th Avenue. 3:30PM Thursday, November 10. $5.
Restore Oregon's annual Restoration Celebration is a festive evening celebrating Oregon's most valuable spaces. Architects, craftsmen, concerned-citizens, developers, designers, and historic property owners come together to recognize and toast exemplary preservation and reuse projects with the DeMuro Awards, as well as the unveiling of the Oregon's Most Endangered Places list and a keynote talk by Emilie Evans, co-founder of Detroit's Brick + Beam Detroit and director of Place Economics' Rightsizing Cities Initiative. Sentinel Hotel, 614 SW 11th Avenue. 5:30PM Friday, November 11. $125 ($100 for Restore Oregon members).
The 1905 Lewis & Clark Exposition
Portland put itself on the map in 1905 when it staged the first world's fair on the West Coast. The Lewis and Clark Centennial Exposition transformed the stagnant waters of Guilds Lake with dozens of exhibit buildings and amusement arcades. The Forestry Building was the world's largest "log cabin" and the US government pavilion was a cross between a railroad station and a Mexican cathedral. Hundreds of thousands of visitors arrived in the city, crowding the streets and hotels and launching Portland into the twentieth century. In this Architectural Heritage Center Lecture, author and Portland State University emeritus professor of urban studies Carl Abbott will discuss the Expo and its impact on Portland. Architectural Heritage Center, 701 SE Grand Avenue. 10AM Saturday, November 12. $20 ($12 for AHC members).