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Functional. Forgettable. Expertise and experience in being able to rapidly throw up structures that promises a high probability of quick return on capital investment.

This building's limpid style gets to be drudgery when repeated over and over again with the frequency Portland has had the misfortune of experiencing at this architectural firms hands. It would help if they would start thinking in terms of using at least a little variation in shape from the standard box they seem to prefer. A little less subtle ornamentation would help too.

Brian Libby

I think developer-driven condo projects are not the best format for innovation. It's a formula, to some degree, and a puzzle. I think it's functional, and not really unforgettable based on what we're seeing in these renderings. But nonetheless a respectable design that will be good for its immediate environment urbanistically.

Bronson Graff

ws says: "It would help if they would start thinking in terms of using at least a little variation in shape from the standard box they seem to prefer."

The floorplan is driven by FAR and the developers proforma. The proforma is done by the developer, not the architect.

The building's bulk is driven by those things, not an architects desire for a fat building. If a skinny, tall, tower project was all that could be allowed by the FAR, and was financially feasible in a given market, you'd see one from AMAA and every other condo architect in a hearbeat.

Brian has it right. It's a formula, but to a major degree. It's difficult to do pilot type projects like Elleven, Circa, Evo, and Luma in new markets like LA and San Jose that break the mold. Elleven was very nice, but conservative, Luma is a little less so, and Evo is further less so.

Developers and the banks that finance them, are not keen on taking exceptional $125 million dollar risks the first time out.

That's part of the reason that only now are you seeing some more architecture that at least trends to the avant garde type design, in the Portland market. The market is proven and has shown it can support $500-$600 a square foot sale costs, like you're seeing at the Metropolitan, and down on the South Waterfront with the upcoming towers there.

The LA market is just getting started.


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