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819-2023

Report

Accept Halprin Landscape Conservancy Keller Auditorium Renovation Design Concept report

Accepted

Date:      September 11, 2023

To:          City Council

From:     Mike Jordan, Chief Administrative Officer

                Karl Lisle, Spectator Venues Program Manager

                Lauren Broudy, Spectator Venues Program Coordinator

Re:          September 27, 2023 City Council Agenda Item—Accept Halprin Landscape

                Conservancy’s Keller Auditorium Renovation Design Concept Report (Report;

                Grant Agreement No. 32003038)

Karen Whitman, Executive Director, Halprin Landscape Conservancy, will join John Russell, Developer, Scott Andrews, Principal Broker Melvin Mark Brokerage Company, and Tim Eddy, President, Hennebery Eddy Architects, to present their work on a potential renovation of the Keller Auditorium.

Halprin Landscape Conservancy’s report documents their feasibility study for rehabilitating and expanding the Keller.

This report is required by the Halprin’s grant agreement with the City to explore a renovation concept in further detail. The grant agreement required a $200,000 investment from both the City and Metro and a $200,000 private match from the Halprin Landscape Conservancy.

While this report details a design concept for a renovated Keller, other options including potential replacement of the venue on an alternative site will be considered. City staff will have more information regarding the exploration of a new build on another site in the coming months.

At this time, no decisions have been made on the future of the Keller Auditorium and no capital funding has been identified to pay for a major renovation or replacement.

Impact Statement

Purpose of Proposed Legislation and Background Information

This report from the Halprin Landscape Conservancy (“Halprin”) captures Halprin’s work with Hennebery Eddy Architects and a larger consultant team for a potential renovation of the Keller Auditorium. This report is a requirement of Halprin’s grant agreement with the City.

In March of 2020, the City of Portland completed the Keller Seismic Analysis Summary Report that outlined the structural deficiencies of the Auditorium and potential options to consider for the future. The report was released in 2021. The key options include different scales of work: option 1(b) which is a building renovation that addresses seismic upgrades, option (2) which is a major renovation including new additions and option (3) which is a new facility on the existing site or an alternative site.

In 2017, a private design competition spearheaded by Halprin was held to conceptualize what might be possible for a grand scale Keller renovation on site. This cohort of private design professionals became interested in continuing this work and requested that the City and Metro contribute to their “option 2(b)” exploration to see what would be feasible. This report documents Halprin’s feasibility study for rehabilitating and expanding the Keller.

The Keller Auditorium is known as the workhorse of the Portland’5 Centers for the Arts venues, hosting nearly 400,000 guests each year and providing the only stage in the region capable of hosting large-scale theatrical performances such as Broadway productions, ballet, operas and more.

While the Halprin report details one design concept option for a renovated Keller, there are still other options to consider including a new facility on a different site. The biggest hurdle a Keller renovation faces is figuring out how to generate revenue and preserve jobs and economic benefits if the Keller were to close for two years during renovation. As such, the City is exploring potential sites for a new performing arts facility, which is currently underway. More information will be available about this parallel effort in the coming months.

Financial and Budgetary Impacts

Investment into this project totaled over $600,000:

  • The City of Portland invested $200,000 in special appropriations funds from the Mayor’s Office;
  • Metro invested $200,000; and
  • Halprin raised over $200,000 to meet the match obligations of this agreement and spent over this minimum requirement to complete the report.

Community Impacts and Community Involvement

The work led by Halprin has not involved the community at large. In their work, they met with current users of the building as they developed the renovation concept.

However, the report acknowledges the need to more broadly engage with key stakeholders and the greater community regarding the future of this important venue. Halprin identifies an equity strategy in their report, which breaks down a process to incorporate five steps: (1) inform (provide community with relevant information), (2) consult (gather input from the community), (3) involve (ensure community needs and assets are integrated into process and inform planning), (4) collaborate (ensure community capacity to play a leadership role in implementation of decisions) and (5) defer to (foster democratic participation and equity by bridging the divide between community and governance, through community decision-making).

Community engagement and equity-centered work will be undertaken prior to making any final decisions about the renovation.

100% Renewable Goal

The report details how the renovation concept would strive to meet both the City of Portland Green Building Policy and Metro’s Sustainable Building & Sites policy. Specifically for the City, it addresses what it would take to achieve LEED Gold and ILFI Core Certification, the potential for embodied carbon reduction and the opportunity for renewable energy generation through solar panels. The report states that by reusing the existing building foundations, 17,800 tons of carbon emissions can be avoided.

The report found that the renovation concept would not likely be able to support an ecoroof on top of the building due to a combination of the portions of the building that are unreinforced masonry dating back to the original 1917 construction, a large portion of the main roof level being supported by trusses over the auditorium space that are already loaded to near capacity and the fact that an ecoroof would locate substantial mass at the top of the building that would not be desirable from a seismic force perspective.

Budget Office Financial Impact Analysis

No fiscal impact to accept the report.  At this time, no decisions have been made on the future of the Keller Auditorium and no capital funding has been identified to pay for a major renovation or replacement. To complete the report, the City invested $200,000 in Special Appropriations funds while Metro also invested $200,000; and Halprin raised over $200,000 to meet the match obligations of this agreement and spent over this minimum requirement to complete the report. The report identified 3 options: 1) The construction cost for the Baseline option is roughly $174.9 million, with soft costs estimated at $61.2 million. 2) The construction cost of an Accelerated Schedule is $197.9 million, with soft costs estimated at $69.3 million. 3) The cost for a New Facility, not including land acquisition, is $517.4 million. 

Agenda Items

Accepted

Motion to accept the report: Moved by Ryan and seconded by Gonzalez.
  • Commissioner Rene Gonzalez Yea
  • Commissioner Mingus Mapps Absent
  • Commissioner Carmen Rubio Yea
  • Commissioner Dan Ryan Yea
  • Mayor Ted Wheeler Yea

Introduced by

Contact

Karl Lisle

Spectator Venues Program Manager

Lauren Broudy

Spectator Venues Program Coordinator

Requested Agenda Type

Time Certain

Date and Time Information

Requested Council Date
Requested Start Time
2:00 pm
Time Requested
1 hour
Confirmed Time Certain