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Snøhetta releases design for riverfront public market in Portland, Ore.

The James Beard Public Market will be Portland’s first year-round market since 1942, when the Portland Public Market closed down.

June 29, 2015 |
Snøhetta unveils designs for riverfront public market in Portland, Oregon

Construction is expected to begin in 2016. Renderings courtesy Snøhetta

It’s been more than 70 years since Oregon’s largest city, Portland, has had a public market. In response to the city's thriving culinary scene, residents have formed the non-profit organization James Beard Public Market, and Snøhetta designed what will be Portland’s first year-round market since 1942, when the Portland Public Market closed down.

Named after prominent gastronomical figure James Beard, who Dezeen reports “developed an interest in food at an early age after accompanying his mother on shopping trips to Portland markets,” the market will reintroduce the hustle and bustle of commerce and public vibrancy to the western end of Morrison Bridge on the Willamette River.

The bridge, which currently splits the market’s future site in half and blocks pedestrian access from three sides, will be realigned by the architects with access ramps, and a new pedestrian through-road will make the new market accessible from all directions.



Snøhetta’s design will have room for 60 permanent stalls, 30 flexible stands, restaurants, a teaching kitchen, and an events space.

"A generous pedestrian street will run north and south, swelling at the sunniest portion of the site, to create an outdoor room for vendor stalls, seating, and green areas for Pacific Northwest native plantings," the design team added in a statement.

Construction is set to start in 2016. This isn’t the Oslo-based firm’s only project in Oregon—they have been called on to revitalize an abandoned paper mill on the Willamette Falls near Oregon City into a mixed-use public destination, giving the public up-close access to the falls for the first time. 


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