Boora Architects

People Make Buildings

Arts Centers
Campus Buildings
Civic Buildings
Custom Homes
K-12 Schools
Mixed Use
Planning
Renovation
Sustainability
Workplaces
Bodyvox Dance Center
Collin County Center for the Arts
Underground Railroad Freedom Center
Mesa Arts Center
Old Dominion University - GoodeTheatre
PICA 2004 Temporary Theater
PICA 2005 Temporary Art Center
Portland Center for the Performing Arts
Portland State University - Lincoln Hall
Scripps College - Music Building
UC Davis Mondavi Center
University of Oregon - Music + Dance
UT Austin - Bass Concert Hall
UTPB-Wagner Noel Performing Arts Center
Virginia Tech - Integrated Arts Center
Walton Arts Center
Community College of Denver
Dartmouth College Hopkins Arts Center
Earlham College Fine Arts Complex
Earlham College Science Building
Harvey Mudd College - Learning Building
Lewis & Clark College Gregg Pavilion
Michigan State - Cook Recital Hall
Old Dominion University - GoodeTheatre
Oregon State Univ - Classroom Building
Portland State University - Lincoln Hall
Scripps College - Music Building
Stanford - Knight Management Center
Stanford - Nano Engineering Center
Stanford - Huang Engineering Center
Stanford--BioE-ChemE Building
Stanford - Y2E2 Building
UC Davis Mondavi Center
UC Santa Cruz - McHenry Library
University of Oregon - Music + Dance
UT Austin - Bass Concert Hall
UTPB-Wagner Noel Performing Arts Center
Virginia Tech - Integrated Arts Center
Collin County Center for the Arts
Federal Reserve Bank NW Headquarters
Underground Railroad Freedom Center
Mark O. Hatfield U.S. Courthouse
McMinnville Courts/Council Building
Portland Center for the Performing Arts
Vernonia K-12 School
Boles/Kahle Beach House
Boora Beach House
360 House
The Step House
Kitchel Residence
The Tower House
Coastal Residence
Baker Prairie Middle School
Beaverton School District
Central Catholic High School Expansion
Clackamas High School
Crystal Springs Upland School
David Douglas Early Learning Center
Happy Valley Middle-Elementary School
Newberg High School Infill Expansion
St. Mary's Academy Commons Addition
Vernonia K-12 School
Mesa Arts Center
North Pearl District Master Plan
HOYT Block 15 Condominiums
The Encore Condominiums
The Metropolitan Condominiums
Adidas Village (American Headquarters)
Collin County Center for the Arts
Happy Valley Middle-Elementary School
Mesa Arts Center
North Pearl District Master Plan
Stanford Science & Engineering Quad
UC Davis Mondavi Center
Adidas Village (American Headquarters)
Bodyvox Dance Center
Boora's Office Renovation
Lewis & Clark College Gregg Pavilion
Newberg High School Infill Expansion
Portland Center for the Performing Arts
Portland State University - Lincoln Hall
Legal Office Tenant Improvement
Scripps College - Music Building
St. Mary's Academy Commons Addition
UC Santa Cruz - McHenry Library
University of Oregon - Music + Dance
UT Austin - Bass Concert Hall
Baker Prairie Middle School
Boora's Office Renovation
Clackamas High School
North Pearl District Master Plan
One Waterfront Place Office Building
Portland State University - Lincoln Hall
Stanford - Knight Management Center
Stanford Science & Engineering Quad
UC Davis Mondavi Center
Vernonia K-12 School
Adidas Village (American Headquarters)
Boora's Office Renovation
Corporate Dining - Japanese Cafe
Corporate Lobby Renovation & Sky Lounge
Federal Reserve Bank NW Headquarters
FINE Design Group
Flexible High Tech Office Design
LEED Platinum Office Improvement
Cloud Computing Offices & Amenities
Legal Office Tenant Improvement
High Tech Human Resources
High Tech Office Redesign
Literary Arts
One Waterfront Place Office Building
The Metropolitan Condominiums

A magnet for artists who take creative risks, the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art (PICA) presents the Time-Based Art (TBA) Festival every fall.  This international arts festival presents pioneering performances by artists working in theater, performance, dance, music, and electronic media.

For its 2004 TBA Festival, PICA needed a 200-seat theater, a cabaret stage, a bar, and a café.  After touring existing theaters in the city of Portland and recognizing the infeasibility of carrying high-cost rental terms, the organization challenged its supporters with delivering a more cost effective alternative. As a non-profit organization, PICA limited its budget for the venue initiative to $10,000.

Responding to PICA’s request, Portland developer and PICA board member Al Solheim offered the organization the Jackson Machine Works building, located at 1115 NW 14th Street in Portland’s Pearl District.  The building comprised 25,000 square feet of industrial fabrication space.

In addition to its professional design work for arts presenters, Boora is an active incubator and pro bono supporter of cultural organizations in the city of Portland.  Boora has an especially close relationship with PICA, which was housed within Boora's offices for the first few years after its founding in 1995.  Members of Boora’s leadership serve on PICA’s board of directors and leadership council, while the firm’s staff volunteer thousands of hours annually to support PICA’s programming.  In support of its long-standing relationship with PICA, Boora tendered a pro bono design team for the interior architecture of the Jackson Machine Works space.

As sufficient clear area for the stage could be found only within one of the building’s structural bays, Boora's volunteer design team positioned the seating for the temporary theater in the bays of the grid surrounding the stage bay.  The team then positioned this whole assembly in front of existing offices lining one wall of the building, whose poor construction warranted concealment for their inconsistency with the aesthetic goals for the festival environment space.  A narrow interstitial corridor between the rear of the theater and these offices facilitated their use as back-of-house support spaces.

Inside the theater, an additional scaffold substructure supported the three banks of long-tiered bench seating.  An existing overhead gantry crane accommodated the theatrical lighting.

The theater seating assembly was made from recycled, readily available, or easily returnable materials.  Five-gallon plastic buckets served as the base for the seating assembly, while ½-inch MDF board created the seating platforms.  Recycled carpet tiles lined these platforms, providing cushioning.

Recycled Interface carpet tiles provided cushioning for the seating.

A skin for the scaffold wall was required to isolate acoustics and lighting while guaranteeing the intimacy of the performance environment. The designers clad the scaffold wall’s interior and exterior faces with the translucent materials pegboard and fire-treated visqueen, respectively.

To differentiate the theater volume from the surrounding volume of the warehouse, the designers delineated the theater space with an 8-foot thick, 18-foot tall internally illuminated scaffold structure clad in pegboard and translucent visqueen.  This scaffold wall concealed technical equipment, transformers, and cabling, as well as an elevated control room that served both the theater and the adjacent cabaret stage.  A portal in the wall provided entry to the theater space.

Material tests demonstrated that, unlike the transparent character of non-fire-treated visqueen, the opacity of fire-treated visqueen would more evenly diffuse light from the internal fluorescent lighting system planned for the scaffold wall.  The resultant glow of the clad scaffold wall distinguished the theater from its gritty warehouse surrounding by rendering the scaffold a glowing volume of light.

Specialized construction techniques protected the visqueen and pegboard from damage, reducing waste by allowing the materials to be returned to their original sources or retained by the organization for future use.  Zip ties connected scrap wood blocks to both the interior and exterior of the scaffold.  Staples and screws then attached the fire-treated visqueen and pegboard, respectively, to this blocking.  The screws passed through the holes in the pegboard, leaving it intact, and the staples left negligible tears in the visqueen.

Other arts centers

BodyVox Center for Dance

Collin County Center for the Arts

Mesa Arts Center

Lesher Regional Center for the Arts

Northwest Museum of Art and Culture

Pomona College Seaver Theater

Portland Center for the Performing Arts

Portland Institute for Contemporary Art 2005 Temporary Event Complex

University of New Mexico Fine Arts Center

UC Davis Mondavi Center for the Arts

UT Austin Bass Performance Hall

UT Permian Basin Wagner-Noel Performing Arts Center
Selected publications

Architectural Record
"2006 AIA national honor award winners," 2006

Architecture in the United States by Philip Jodidio
Taschen, 2006

Entertainment Design
"A Disposable Theatre: From a Warehouse Rises A Sustainable Venue for an International Arts Festival," 2005

Interior Design
"Flour Power," 2005

Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce
"Four NW firms are among winners of top AIA awards," 2006
Awards

American Institute of Architects
Institute Honor Award for Interior Architecture, 2006

American Institute of Architects (Pacific Region)
Honor Award, 2005

American Institute of Architects (Portland Chapter)
Merit Award, 2004
People's Choice Award, 2004

International Interior Design Association
Honor Award, 2004
Jury's Choice Award, 2004

United States Institute for Theater Technology
Honor Award, 2005