James Beard Public Market

The city’s historic Portland Public Market closed its doors in 1942. Since that year, James Beard Public Market became Portland’s first permanent market.

To fill this void, community members formed the non-profit James Beard Public Market to restore a daily, year-round, indoor-outdoor marketplace in the heart of the city.  James Beard, known as the ‘dean of American cookery’ was a famous chef, writer and a Portland native who helped to start the movement for fresh local food in the United States. “Shopping with his mother at Portland’s public markets gave him an early appreciation for Oregon’s culinary riches“, says Snøhetta.

Courtesy of Snøhetta

Courtesy of Snøhetta

The market will feature more than 60 permanent vendors, 30 day tables, full-service restaurants, a teaching kitchen and an event space. It will connect the city to the river and will be an opulence for residents and visitors alike. The market is located on the Willamette River, near the waterfront of the original Portland Public Market, an iconic drawbridge, sits adjacent to a waterfront park . Currently, the Morrison Street Bridge and automobile ramps slice the site into two symmetrical halves, barring pedestrian access from three sides.

The new James Beard Public Market will rise up in a wing-like form to either side of the bridge, acting as a gateway to downtown Portland and creating a recognizable icon at the center of the city. Large doors open up along the entire market facade to a widened sidewalk, allowing guest seating to spill out during good weather. The market stalls are arranged along a pathway that connects the main entrances to the outdoor market and pedestrian street. Soaring ceilings clad in natural wood are supported by exposed structural steel columns and trusses, reminiscent of the neighboring bridges“, describes Snøhetta.

Courtesy of Snøhetta

Courtesy of Snøhetta

A pedestrian street will run north and south, undulating  the sunniest portion to create an outdoor room for vendor stalls, seating and green areas for Pacific Northwest native plantings. Snøhetta designed an inhabitable green roof that splits and folds, forming large clerestories which naturally light the market below. From the upper level of the market, visitors can access the large rooftop terraces with views of the waterfront park, Willamette River, and Mt. Hood in the distance. A hydroponic garden is located on a sunny, terraced portion of the green roof, adjacent to the demonstration kitchen and event space.

Project Information:
Architect : Snøhetta
Location : Portland Oregon
Project Year : 2014 – Ongoing
Collaborators : Architects, Studio Jeffreys and Interface Engineering

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