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Author Archives: Kent Hohlfeld

Historic buildings require a balancing act from architects (access required)

Updating a historic building to accommodate modern uses requires teams to balance a variety of competing interests. While accounting for a structure’s historic nature, architects often seek ways to improve energy efficiency and seismic strength.Many firms have become accustomed to ...

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Next generation of pod home design arrives in Portland (access required)

When it comes to local efforts to create the next generation of housing for the homeless, computer-aided saws and plywood will be as instrumental as hammers and nails. “We thought there was some technology that could lead to some really ...

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Keeping cool by design (access required)

When temperatures soar, city dwellers feel the impact more than anyone else. The heat island effect can cause a city core to become as much as 20 degrees hotter than rural areas. “More and more, it’s definitely an issue,” said ...

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A struggle to avoid culture shock (access required)

Designing buildings that will change a community for decades to come is never an easy endeavor. Doing so when without speaking many residents’ languages or knowing their cultures can be exponentially tougher. “Fundamentally, in any community, if you ask them ...

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Modular housing hasn’t caught on in Oregon (access required)

While prefabricated buildings continue to pop up in Washington and northern California, they aren’t catching on in Oregon. “Construction costs are the biggest part of it,” said Nathan Young, owner of MODS PDX Inc. in Portland. “The labor shortage is ...

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Design Beyond Borders: University of Idaho’s basketball arena (access required)

Opsis Architecture is designing a new basketball arena for the University of Idaho. The 4,700-seat facility will replace the ASUI Kibbie Activity Center, commonly called the Kibbie Dome, as the basketball team’s home. “(The Kibbie Dome) seats about 16,000 people, ...

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Boise company’s modular units ease the way to Bay Area affordable housing (access required)

San Francisco Bay Area residents looking for the unicorn that affordable housing has become in the region now have one more option thanks to the Boise-based Guerdon,  the Portland, Ore.-based Bridge Housing, and Ankrom Moisan Architects. The developer and architecture ...

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Better health through healthier buildings (access required)

When it comes to the health of workers, building construction can be as big a factor as sleep, diet or exercise. New research on health and construction is influencing project designs. Buildings with sustainable elements have been shown to improve ...

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Augmented reality: the next big thing? (access required)

Architects and builders are using innovative systems to look beyond the real world. One of the newest is augmented reality. While virtual reality (VR) systems immerse users in entirely computer-generated worlds, augmented reality (AR) systems overlay information onto real-world settings. ...

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A new kind of bridge to withstand earthquakes (access required)

Bridge construction may take a big seismic step forward if a new span in Seattle performs as expected. “I think over time this could become one of the more common methods of resisting earthquakes,” said Tom Baker, an engineer with ...

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