WILLIAM / KAVEN ARCHITECTURE LEASES PENTHOUSE OFFICE IN OUR RECENTLY COMPLETED SILICA BUILDING.
William / Kaven Architecture has moved its headquarters into the penthouse suite of our recently completed Silica office building on North Williams Avenue. The studio acquired the site in 2016 as part of a portfolio that included three corner sites on the street to develop a state-of-the-art mixed-use building comprised of mass-timber, concrete and glass. William / Kaven sold the property to Ruben J. Menashe, Inc. prior to breaking ground on the development and stayed on to oversee the design process — and ultimately to lease its marquee office space.
Of the move, partner Daniel Kaven says, “We’re excited to be staying in the neighborhood and occupying a building that we designed from the ground up. The new space better reflects our design ethos and will accommodate our future growth.” The lobby of the building additionally features a mural by Kaven, from his Architecture of Normal series, which distills iconic paintings and photographs of the American West into simplified colorways.
Located on the corner of North Williams and Mason Street in NE Portland, Silica combines leasable office and retail space with light, air and modern sensibility. The base, which houses five retail spaces, is composed of board-form concrete with large glazed openings. Cantilevering out from above the ground level sits a three-story box of offices, clad in an iridescent curtain-wall with interstitial panels of pin-stripe fritted glass running top to bottom. Along North Williams, the cantilever provides more than 7’ of overhang to shelter a sidewalk cafe program. An outdoor terrace with a green roof and an extension of the office along the south at Level Two serve to break down the building’s mass and scale and negotiate a transition to its residential neighbors to the south. Balconies along the west facade capture views of downtown Portland and the West Hills while providing shading and privacy to the large expanses of office window. Two concrete cores that house the vertical circulation support the building in shear while massive glue-laminated timber beams with fir car-decking and a concrete topping slab span between to make up the floors.
Several of the old-growth beams from the deconstructed original building were repurposed into furniture for the new lobby and common areas on the floors above, including benches that sit atop steel legs fabricated by the very manufacturing plant that William / Kaven bought the property from and used to inhabit the site.
Critical to the design of Silica was meticulous landscape integration; the terrace’s green roof and the balconies’ steel planters, along with the jasmine vine trellises and foliage at the base of the building, produce views as stunning from the inside as they are from the outside. The building was deliberately set back from the street to accommodate sidewalk seating and a row of substantial cork oak trees.
Partners in Charge: Daniel Kaven and Trevor William Lewis
Design Staff: Max Taschek, Joel Dickson
Project Manager: Michael Perso
Construction Partner: Bremik Construction
Project Location: Portland, OR
Lot Area: 11,812.5 s.f.
Gross Building Area: 35,430 s.f.
Building Height: 56’
Completion Date: September 2018