The program for Harriman’s Portland office location required utilization of the building’s lower level to meet space requirements. A large opening cut in the upper level floor framing integrates the upper level with the below-grade lower level, which has a low floor-to-ceiling height of 7’-6”.
Meeting areas, offices, and mechanical and electrical rooms, are located on the perimeter of the lower level with workstations in the middle of the two-story space. The space is flooded with natural light from above.
A clear distinction between the existing building fabric and the new elements is apparent. New, unfinished structural framing heightens the contrast with the existing structure. Color applied to new surfaces highlights their distinction from existing surfaces.
With a construction budget of $30/sf and a desire to employ sustainable practices, reuse of existing systems, fixtures, and materials was a priority. The salvaged floor framing, removed to create the lower level opening, serves as the railing system around the opening. Recycled unfinished steel rebar also serves as part of the railing system. The original wood floor, where exposed, appears as it was found.
Photography by David Lamb