City leaders, design team members and the public celebrated the groundbreaking of the first in a series of construction projects to revitalize St. Helens’ waterfront. The November 2nd event marked the start of construction for what’s known as the Streets and Utilities Extension project which will pave the way for future phases of public and private redevelopment of former industrial sites along the Columbia riverfront. Mayer/Reed worked with Otak on this initial phase which extends First and Strand streets. The street extensions feature welcoming, pedestrian-friendly amenities that will interface with a future mixed-use neighborhood and the Mayer/Reed-designed riverwalk which is set for construction in 2023.
The American Public Works Association (APWA) Oregon Chapter selected the “Better Naito Forever” project for their 2022 Project of the Year Award in the category of Transportation less than $5 Million. The APWA presented the award on October 20th at their Oregon Chapter Fall Conference in Pendleton.
What started as “Better Naito” – a grassroots, temporary effort to improve Naito Parkway with more space for walking, rolling and riding to Portland’s summer festivals – has grown into a signature multimodal corridor for downtown Portland. Known as “Better Naito Forever,” the project features a permanent cycle track, complete sidewalk, safe and efficient traffic signals and incorporation of the mature Tom McCall Waterfront Park tree canopy. It provides people with an enjoyable active transportation route to move through downtown.
Mayer/Reed worked with David Evans & Associates to design this Portland Bureau of Transportation project. Our firm focused particularly on integration with the adjacent Tom McCall Waterfront Park, tree preservation and redesign of a tiny park with a big reputation, Mill Ends Park.
From the moment it opened, Better Naito has proven popular with cyclists and pedestrians as a way to move safely through downtown. We’re honored that the APWA is also a fan of the project.
Associate Principal Shannon Simms (Mayer/Reed), along with Steffi McDonald (David Evans and Associates) and Dana Beckwith (Global Transportation Engineering) will present “Lifecycle of Portland’s Premier Cycle Track” at the American Public Works Association (APWA) Oregon Chapter Fall Conference on October 19th. The session will explore how a grassroots temporary cycle track on Portland’s Naito Parkway became a state-of-the-art active transportation facility with the quirky name, “Better Naito Forever.”
Today, Naito provides better accessibility, safety and circulation for all users with its new bike signals, protected pedestrian refuges and a continuous sidewalk along the entirety of Waterfront Park. The project’s goals were realized through extensive engagement with the community and stakeholders, including Portland Parks & Recreation and festival organizers. The presentation will cover the changes made at each stage and the final design solutions, including the redesign of the world’s smallest park, Mill Ends Park.
Mayer/Reed’s Grant High School Modernization received an Honor Award in the general design category at the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) Oregon 2022 Design Awards soirée on October 7th. Landscape architects and students from around Oregon gathered for the first time in two years to celebrate outstanding works of landscape architecture and environmental planning in our state.
The modernization of Grant High School’s building, led by Mahlum Architects, coupled with our site design work on the 10.2-acre campus, demonstrates how bold spatial solutions can create community, overcome social disadvantage, achieve sustainability and enable equal access to learning environments. Beyond the physical modernization of an aging historic landmark building, our team achieved goals set by Portland Public Schools for engagement, equity and inclusion in the community-based planning and design process.
Jurors appreciated the close working relationship of landscape and architecture in creating new physical, ecological and social connections that replace the former maze of unsafe, inaccessible and unused outdoor spaces. One juror noted: “…A clear collaborative effort between the architect and landscape architect where the courtyards highlight the landscape architect’s contribution, nicely developed spaces for students to thrive. Visual clarity on the site is a great improvement to the campus.”
We at Mayer/Reed, along with the entire Grant High School team, are honored to have been a part of improving this significant community asset that has set up a legacy for future generations to enjoy.