Gallery: The four faces of Edith
By Wendy Culverwell
Roof-to-street reeds filter sun on the west-facing side of the Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt federal office building, which is midway through a major renovation. This photo was taken looking up.
Work at the Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt federal office building shifts indoors in a month as workers wrap up a dramatic update that includes an all-new façade and canopy.
The green makeover of the aptly named Edith Green building began last year and won’t wrap up until mid-2013. But much of the exterior is now finished and the contractor, Howard S. Wright Constructors, reports it will dismantle the crane at the project in July.
|Edith in pictures >>|
Project leaders took visitors on a mid-construction tour this week to show off progress made to date on the $152 million undertaking — up from $139 million to accommodate office work for its future federal tenants.
The once-staid office building, 1220 S.W. Third Ave., now has a modern glass exterior manufactured in Portland by Benson Industries Inc., roof-to-street metal “reeds” to filter light on the west side and all new mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems.
Each of the four façades of the building are specially designed to boost efficiency based on their sun exposure.
The final exterior work is taking place more than 20 stories above street level, on a soaring canopy installed above the old roof. Electricians are wiring the canopy for a solar system that will generate up to 5 percent of the energy the building will use. The canopy also collects rainwater nine months of the year and dispatches it to a gun-range-turned-cistern, where it is pumped via purple pipes to toilets.
The unusual project was funded by the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, aka the $787 billion Stimulus Act.
Designed by SERA Architects, the Edith Green renovation is demonstrating just what can be done to make old buildings new again. Edith Green originally was constructed as a private project in the 1970s and was later acquired by the U.S. government.
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