Portland, Oregon, USA
LEVER was commissioned by Langley Investment Partners to design Redfox Commons, a 60,000- sf renovation that knits together two World War II era warehouses to form one light-filled creative office campus.
Redfox Commons won a 2020 American Architecture Award from The Chicago Athenaeum.
The buildings, once home to an agricultural equipment company, are located at Guild’s Lake Industrial Sanctuary, one of Portland’s largest industrial areas.
This project sits at the southern end of the industrial park, bordering a residential neighborhood, the city’s largest urban park, and the Willamette River.
Like many early structures in the Pacific Northwest, the buildings are framed using regionally harvested timber.
Recognizing the historic and environmental significance of this material, the renovation preserves and utilizes the original lumber.
Wood from an existing overbuilt mezzanine is repurposed to create a light-filled glass atrium that becomes the main entrance and connection between the two buildings.
The original trusses were sandblasted and remain exposed, highlighting the natural beauty of the wood.
New eighty-foot long clerestory windows were added to each roof to bring light into the large open floor plates, intended to accommodate single or multiple tenants and varied uses over time.
The rest of the material palette was selected to complement the industrial neighborhood’s history and identity; the façade and roof are clad in corrugated weathering steel and a ribbon of metal-framed storefront windows provide new views to the surroundings.
A series of rain gardens mitigate stormwater and a new patio and sidewalks become the first indication the neighborhood is beginning to change as envisioned under Portland’s 2035 Comprehensive Plan.
Architects: LEVER Architecture
Developer/Client: Langley Investment Partners
Owner’s Representative: Inici Group
Owner’s Project Manager: Alta Urban
Photographers: Lara Swimmer, Jeremy Bittermann