Landscape Architect: OLIN
Location: Portland, Oregon, United States
Project Team: Laurie Olin, FASLA
Consultants: Mayer/Reed, KPFF Consulting Engineers, SOLARC Architecture and Engineering, Interface Engineering, Benya Lighting Design, Tad Savinar, CMS Collaborative, Corson Studios, Karen Whitman Projects
Project Area: 22,000 sqf
Project Year: 2009
Photographs: ZGF, Eckert & Eckert
Formerly a parking lot the size of a city block, Simon and Helen Director Park now offers Portland a significant new urban experience. The park, built entirely over structure, has created public spaces with a range of microclimates, amenities, and activities, and has quickly become a unique destination and landmark for residents and visitors. A signature element is a glass and wood canopy accessible from the adjacent sidewalk and sitting high along the street’s edge, offering views over the park. A water element with arching jets and a semi-circular basin creates a comfortable environment for pedestrians and reinforces the architectural massing of the site by addressing the street edge and providing a balance of built elements within the open space of the park. Other elements include loose table and chair seating, permanent stone and wood benches, street trees, custom lighting and a café. Both the stone-paved surfaces and glass canopy incorporate innovative stormwater techniques to capture and reuse runoff on-site to support the irrigation of plants during the dry months.