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Portland Building

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Portland Building
Portland Municipal Services Building


Structure in General

high-rise building
existing [under renovation]
applied masonry
light yellow dark green dark red


governmental office


  • Portlandia, in front of the Portland Building, is the second largest copper statue in the United States after the Statue of Liberty.
  • Original design by Los Angeles architect Frank Gehry.
  • National AIA Honor Award, May 1983.
  • Opened and dedicated on October 2, 1982.
  • Portland Building is located on a 200-square feet block area.
  • The original building budget was $22.4 million.
  • In September, 1995 during a small renovation on the 14th floor, revealed extensive cracking in the overlying floor slab.
  • The Portland Building has been both on Time and Newsweek front covers.
  • Graves building design was the most inexpensive design submitted at US $24,500,000.
  • During the design phase, eleven design-build teams initially responded to the published RFP (Request For Proposals).
  • Erickson’s proposed design consisted of reflective glass facade suspended on pilotis, with a series of setbacks at ground level for public use.
  • In 1933, Tourtellotte and Hummel proposed a high-rise building that was never built on the spot where the Portland Buidling is currently located.
  • The Portland Building is considered to be among the earliest examples of U.S. postmodern large-scale structures.
  • Portlandia's dedication was on October 6th, 1985.
  • Belluschi, one of Portland most recognized architects, lobbied against Graves’ building design as it looked like “…oversized beribboned Christmas package”.
  • The initial proposed designs of the final three design-build teams did not fully meet the city's requirements.
  • Above the entrance of Portland Building, the 38-feet tall Portlandia holds a trident in one hand and reaches toward the street with the other.
  • The proposal put forth by the Giurgola design team mostly met the set specifications of the City; however, it exceeded the budget by US $6 million.
  • In 1985, a case study conducted by an independent agency revealed that the building's energy consumption was at 57,500 BTU/sq ft/yr; 22 percent over the Graves, Hoffman and Morse/Diesel team's prediction.
  • The final three design-build teams were Arthur Erickson and Mitchell/Giurgola, and Michael Graves.
  • The building's first 3 stories are clad in dark green tiles. The building's main section is cream-colored with small, 4 feet square windows and terracotta-colored pilasters.
  • The initial design called for an office building, 360,000 square-feet, and an underground level for parking.
  • Sculptor/architect Raymond Kaskey of Washington, D.C. assembled the statue's nine sections before the Willamette River trip towards the Portland Building.

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More Information


1120 SW 5th Avenue
SW Main Street, SW Madison Street, SW 4th Avenue
1120 SW 5th Avenue

Technical Data

231.00 ft
215.00 ft

Involved Companies

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Features & Amenities

  • One of the city's famous buildings
  • City landmark
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