Sustainable Design Throughout the Year

During April, we reflected on the significance of the month in the Pacific Northwest. Nature has shaken off its winter rest and has fully awakened, treating our senses to an explosion of color, scent and birdsong. The month also features a convergence of green celebrations. These acknowledgements honor ideas that are essential to our work but are not limited to a certain month. Together, Earth Day, Arbor Day, World Landscape Architecture Month and Frederick Law Olmsted’s birthday form a tapestry of ideals that we put into practice every day throughout the year.

Mayer/Reed is dedicated to upholding the principles of sustainability and green design as well as advancing our understanding and practices as new strategies emerge. Social sustainability in its many forms, though difficult to measure, also remains a focus of our firm. We recognize that a sustainable design ethic is not static, but constantly evolving. It demands our advocacy, exploration and willingness to consciously lead and adapt.

We are fortunate to work together with forward-thinking clients and partners who are devoted to addressing climate action plans, reducing our carbon footprint, preserving natural resources and wildlife habitat, enhancing water quality and creating healthy, equitable places for people. We thank these clients, partners and consultant teams for their commitments to addressing environmental and social challenges as we foster sustainable design. So much is necessary and, with teamwork, so much is possible.

A Pledge for Sustainable & Healthy Materials

MayerReed_materials

It used to be that selecting environmentally responsible materials meant using local and recycled content, sustainably harvested wood and low VOC paint. Today, the architecture and design community recognizes that we can do even more through our material choices to impact human health, climate, environment and society. Until recently, though, we didn’t have the information we needed to avoid harmful materials.

This is changing.

Designers and manufacturers are now engaged in a movement to advance content disclosure of architectural building products so designers can understand the environmental and social impact of the materials they specify. With this knowledge, we hope to drive the development of healthier material and product options through increased demand.

Mayer/Reed is one of the 114 design firms that signed the (Portland initiated) Materials Transparency Pledge. We pledge to support the efforts of the Living Product 50 manufacturers to share the responsibility required to make materials transparency work. For those manufactures that have taken the lead by supplying HPDs, EPDs, Declare, Cradle to Cradle, Green Guard Certifications, thank you for your investment to supply this information. To complete the loop, as designers we pledge to:

Support Human Health by preferring products that support and foster life and seek to eliminate the use of hazardous substances.

Support Climate Health by preferring products that reduce carbon emissions and ultimately sequester more carbon than emitted.

Support Ecosystem Health by preferring products that support and regenerate healthy air, water, and biological cycles through thoughtful supply chain management and restorative company practices.

Support Social Health and Equity by preferring products from manufacturers who secure human rights in their operations and supply chains.

Support a Circular Economy by reusing buildings and materials; and by designing for material efficiency, long life and perpetual cycling.

We’re in an exciting time for design, with opportunities to create places that push past the old benchmarks for sustainability. But a system change will only find success when individual designers, owners and manufacturers change their patterns. Will you join the movement?

To read the full pledge or join the signatories: www.pmtc-pdx.org/about.html

Experience the Kaleidoscopic Canopy at the Portland Winter Light (non)Festival

Do we need some color and light in our lives these days? Oh yes, we do. The Portland Winter Light Festival heeds the call – this year as a dispersed “non-festival” to – allow plenty of social distancing. Come experience Mayer/Reed’s installation in the grove at Oaks Park. We’re painting with a bigger brush, utilizing the 80 ft tall trees as a canvas. Within this arboreal canopy of color, illuminated mylar curtains reflect a kaleidoscope of moving color, picking up accents from amusement surroundings like the aurora borealis. Down on the ground, we’ll stoke a glowing fire pit in a historic picnic shelter to warm visitors. We thank our partner, Oaks Park, for welcoming this free display amid its stalwart oak trees. Come visit the Kaleidoscopic Canopy at Oaks Park this weekend and next, 6 to 10 pm, February 5-6 and 12-13. And check the map to find all kinds of other dazzling light exhibits throughout the city. See you from a distance!Need some color and light in your life? The Portland Winter Light Festival heeds the call, this year as a dispersed, free “non-festival” that allows plenty of social distancing.

Come experience Mayer/Reed’s Kaleidoscopic Canopy installation at Oaks Park. We’re painting with a big brush, utilizing the 80 ft. tall trees as a canvas. Within this arboreal canopy of color, illuminated mylar curtains reflect a kaleidoscope of moving color, picking up accents from amusement surroundings like the aurora borealis. Down on the ground, we’ll stoke a glowing fire pit in a historic picnic shelter to warm visitors. We thank our partners at Oaks Park for welcoming this display amid its stalwart oak trees.

We’re helping to light up downtown as well. If you’re near the Morrison Bridge, look up to see our 8th floor studio windows aglow at SW 3rd and Washington. We call this display “Wish You Were Here.”

Visit Kaleidoscopic Canopy at Oaks Park this weekend and next, 6 to 10 pm, February 5-6 and 12-13. And check the map to find all kinds of other dazzling light exhibits throughout the city. See you from a distance!

Posted February 01, 2021
Written by: Mayer/Reed
Categories: COMMUNITY  EVENTS 

Giving Thanks

Today and always our hearts and minds are filled with gratitude. We are grateful for the Native lands in which we reside; the mountains that watch over us, the rivers that flow and the abundance of fauna and flora that inhabit our region. We are grateful for our communities that keep us grounded in human connection and for the time this year has provided us for reflection.

Happy Thanksgiving