Multnomah County Central Courthouse Portland, Oregon
Multnomah County’s central courthouse was opened in 1914, long before there were building codes that included earthquake resiliency provisions. Facing heavy use, safety, security, accessibility, code compliance, and to meet the needs of population growth 1914, the county undertook this project to provide a safe and functional centrally located courthouse in downtown Portland.
Adding Seismic Resilience to a Historic Public Building
Innovative seismic upgrades included shock absorbers that will allow up to three inches of movement in each direction in the event of an earthquake. Working with the collaborative project team and stakeholders, Otak helped to create many opportunities for the community to take part in the project. To meet the aspirational goals for community outreach that the county set forth, an apprenticeship program was initiated to engage minorities, women, and emerging small business participation throughout the building trades. The team worked with all project partners to help meet these goals. Otak provided comprehensive owner’s representative and construction management services for this new 464,712 square-foot courthouse overlooking the Willamette River.