The last week in April is an exciting time in Portland, which is home to a variety of artists and artisans, designers, software developers, makers and other creators. But you don’t have to be “creative” to appreciate Design Week Portland (April 23 – 29). There’s something for everyone at this annual event featuring the latest thinking, trends and issues in all areas of design.
This year, Design Week Portland Headquarters will bring to life the Green Loop, a planned pedestrian/bike urban promenade linking the city’s east and west sides around the Central City. A “big idea” from the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability’s (BPS) Central City 2035 Plan and shepherded by BPS’ Urban Design Studio, the Green Loop concept caught the eye of Untitled Studio, the winners of last year’s LoopPDX competition.
As part of their winning proposal for the Green Loop, Untitled Studio reimagined the design process as a public celebration. So along with City bureau partners, they will host a weeklong exhibition that invites the community to engage, react to, discuss and further envision the Green Loop’s potential.
The concept for the Green Loop put forth by Untitled Studio, The Portland Mosaic, is a framework to be filled through collaborative efforts – a massive mosaic in which every Portlander can have a tile. With this exhibition, Untitled Studio invites community members to join them in imagining a diverse yet unified Green Loop.
In the exhibition, participants can experience and engage with the concept through collaboration, creative programming, a streetscape prototype and a large-scale interactive map. A special feature of the exhibit will be a virtual reality “tour” of the Green Loop, where participants can explore the various features of the loop through an immersive experience.
Because the Green Loop is the “headliner” event for this year’s Design Week, a series of workshops, charrettes, evening lectures and happy hour events will be coordinated with the Green Loop or larger themes about public space and city design, including:
- Randy Gragg's Bright Lights Conversation on Monday, April 24: "Portland's Green Loop: The New Central City Rising"
- The Design Week Portland Opening Party on April 22
- A workshop titled "Making the Place: Branding Strategies for Public Space" on Friday, April 28, including a discussion with Chloe Eudaly on "Designing a Political Campaign"
- An evening panel, "Dreaming the Future: Portland 2035," where speakers will pitch their ideas for the Portland of the future.
No, it’s not St Patrick’s Day again. But in honor of the Green Loop, Hopworks Urban Brewery has created a new IPA dubbed … you guessed it: Green Loop IPA. A limited edition beverage from one of Portland’s most popular brew pubs, this “deliciously hoppy” IPA was made with “Certified Salmon-Safe Chinook and Crystal hops to represent the river that intersect the districts in the loop.”
So enjoy a “green beer” during Design Week while you experience the Green Loop. Cheers!