Flexibility and Integrity

Portland urban designer Arun Jain has released his Urban Design Framework, a vision that requires planners to give themselves more leeway "without giving up core values."

"The framework includes Jain's 'nodes' concept. 'These locations capitalize the convergence of existing and proposed infrastructure to leverage the most out of civic-minded and private development,' he said. 'They strengthen the public realm by acknowledging and improving what is already in place, while laying the ground for city-defining new iconic architecture.'

He envisions, for example, a development at the east end of the proposed Willamette River Crossing, a pedestrian/bus/light rail bridge slightly south of the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. The development could include mixed-use buildings at the end of the bridge as well as waterfront fairgrounds and a railway museum.

Another node idea is to have a tower at the west end of the Morrison Bridge. The tower could have a 'giant, grand atrium' at its center and be flanked on its north and south sides by east- and west-bound lanes connecting to the Morrison Bridge. 'The building would be an actor on a stage,' said Jain. 'There is something grand and civic-minded about how the building and transit would come together.'"

Full Story: Are ‘nodes’ next for Portland development?

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