Gerding Theater and Vera Katz Park at the Armory

The Armory is the first LEED Platinum building on the National Register of Historic Places and the first performing-arts facility in the world to attain this pinnacle of green building certification.

Built in 1891, the Portland Armory was a defining part of Portland’s history for over half a century, at least until the main building was demolished in 1968. But after years of disrepair, a $38 million renovation led by Gerding Edlen transformed the obsolete Annex building into a vital community performance space that houses theater company Portland Center Stage.

Also included in the restoration was Vera Katz Park, built into a narrow space on the north side of the building. The design team for this transformative project saw the opportunity to expand this historical community asset beyond a simple theater venue. The restoration showcases the preservation of significant architecture, demonstrates Portland’s advanced thinking on energy use, and creates a variety of storytelling venues.

Portland-based GBD Architects led the restoration and redesign efforts, and Murase & Associates designed the adjacent sliver park.

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