The site forms the north corner of the east side industrial district and is part of the Burnside Bridgehead redevelopment effort. It situates itself at the eastern foot of the Burnside Bridge at the geographic center of Portland. The Couch street approach and MLK Boulevard meet at the southeast corner of the site and impose overlapping, sweeping easements on the site boundary.
The Burnside Bridge has long been seen as the central cross hairs of the city. It is the literal divide between the north and the south neighborhoods of the city. The Bridgehead site has recently been modified to accommodate a new traffic pattern of the Burnside-Couch couplet. This new pattern creates a curved and flowing force on the regular Portland street grid as it sweeps traffic up onto the Burnside Bridge heading west. The site is affected by this force and is rounded along its edge as a result.
A modern re-conceptualization of not only the historic warehouse buildings that make up the Industrial Eastside sanctuary, but also the district itself—which has experienced an organized transformation from old industry to new.
With its collection of historic warehouse that have been adapted to house industrial creative workspace, the Eastside is the hot bed for Portland’s maker market. The gritty nature of the Eastside remains a major identifying element. Slate expresses the notion that there is presently no difference in the types of spaces or the locations where one lives or works.
The program inflects the needs for light and air to become more porous towards the top as the residential units filter in. The result is a building that is particular and universal at the same time, the embodiment of a progressively adaptive and evolving district. From both the west view from the city, or the east approach, the facades create a framework of activities — episodic views that collage to form a hive of activity.