Winning Project: Framework (Portland, OR)

Framework, an urban + rural ecological project, is anticipated to be the one of the first tall timber structures in the country. This 12-story building will consist of one level of ground floor retail, five levels of office, five levels of workforce housing and a roof top amenity space.

The USDA grant will allow the project to engage the exploratory phase, including the research and development necessary to utilize Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) and other engineered wood products in high-rise construction in the United States. This includes working with Portland and Oregon code authorities during the pre-permitting process to define and perform the necessary testing and peer review to demonstrate the feasibility of tall wood buildings.

Given its prominent location and public visibility, a key element of the building design led by Thomas Robinson, principal of LEVER Architecture, is to communicate at street level the project’s innovative use of wood and engineering technology in the development of a high rise structure, along with its relationship to the rural economy. Integrating lessons learned from tall timber structures in Canada and Europe, Robinson and his team are expected to incorporate new structural and architectural technologies that include an engineered wood core and lateral system for seismic integrity and CLT floor panels fabricated up to 50’ in length.

From a community perspective, this building will support a unique blend of programming including an Albina Community Bank Branch, street level retail, office space for Beneficial State Bank, B Corp businesses and social enterprise; along with public space and workforce housing in partnership with Home Forward.