Portland, Oregon — Ecotrust has taken ownership of a former machine stamping building and warehouse at 831 SE Salmon Street in Portland’s Central Eastside industrial district, with the intention of restoring the existing structure to build out a manufacturing and production space and commercial hub. A core focus of the project will be to connect regional producers with the growing set of innovative food enterprises centered in Portland.
“We hope to more deeply connect local businesses in Portland with the abundance of resources in the region,” said Spencer B. Beebe, Ecotrust founder and chairman. He continued: “One area we will be actively focused on is scaling a robust regional food system. To that end, we will be looking to the wider food community and to Ecotrust’s unique expertise in food systems and ecology to guide the ultimate direction of the building.”
To carry out its vision, Ecotrust tapped the expertise of Redside, a boutique real estate investment and services firm that acquires, develops and manages commercial and multi-family assets with specific expertise in high-performance, energy-efficient green buildings.
Intrigued by this mission-based project, which reflects Redside’s longstanding commitment to projects that have a restorative effect on the environment and enhance quality of life, Redside secured the property and will provide development.
“We’re excited to help Ecotrust deliver on the mission of this project,” says Danny McGinley, Redside’s co-founder and principal. “The Redd perfectly matches our company purpose and uniquely plays to our development expertise and strengths. Our buildings have often served as a catalyst for transformation. As for the Redd, businesses will thrive here. Innovation will happen here. Community will gather here.”
Redside specializes in transforming buildings into superior quality commercial and multifamily assets. Its multidisciplinary team of architects, developers, and sustainability experts all work together to eliminate unnecessary expense, maximize energy performance, optimize market appeal, and preserve the integrity of existing structures.
Walsh Construction, OPSIS, and Green Gables architects have committed to the project.
Acquisition financing for the building comes from several mission-aligned investors, including the Bill Healy Foundation.
The Redd, named after the nest of gravel where salmon eggs are fertilized, nurtured by cold water, and hatched, aims to nurture a range of growing tenants. The principals are working closely on redesigning the existing 16,000-square-foot industrial building, constructed in 1918, to accommodate production, office, and event space for small and scaling local enterprise.
The Redd is not Ecotrust’s first redevelopment project focused on economic growth. Ecotrust’s headquarters in the Pearl District is a restored warehouse dating to 1895. After a century as a hub for the goods of the industrial economy, the building was reimagined as a center for a new economy in which “nature capital” – the flow of goods and services from nature – is the measure of prosperity and resilience. The renovation used native timber, energy-efficient design, and innovative daylighting to achieve LEED Gold status, a first for historic renovations in the nation. The Jean Vollum Natural Capital Center now hosts more than 500 events a year, and has had 5 million visitors since opening. Over a dozen diverse organizations and social enterprises and more than 200 people work in the building – from asset managers to pizzaiolos: all share Ecotrust’s goal to build a new economy that restores nature and invests in local communities.
Ecotrust’s food and farms work has always focused on connecting local producers and buyers, dating back to the first Farmer-Chef Connection convened by the organization in 2001. Today, the organization’s work centers on building the supporting infrastructure—including the hardware—to help small- and mid-size regional food producers get their product to market.
“Our hope is to use the Redd to vault the regional food system forward by providing mixed-use space to producers, particularly from the richly contoured rural areas of our region,” said Amanda Oborne, VP of Food and Farms at Ecotrust. “For our food system to nourish us and our economy to sustain us, we need good producers to make real money, and to do that, many of them need to grow. We want the Redd to help them do that.”
Ecotrust’s goal is to foster a natural model of development that creates more resilient communities, economies and ecosystems here and around the world. Ecotrust’s many innovations include co-founding an environmental bank, starting the world’s first ecosystem investment fund, creating a range of programs in fisheries, forestry, food, farms and indigenous affairs, and developing new scientific and information tools to improve social, economic and environmental decision making. Ecotrust works locally in ways that promise hope abroad, and it takes inspiration from the wisdom of Native and First Nation leadership. Learn more atwww.ecotrust.org @ecotrust
Redside is a real estate investment and services firm best known for its environmental stewardship, innovative abilities and agile services. Redside acquires, develops and manages commercial and multi-family assets with specific expertise in high-performance, energy-efficient green buildings.
Values-driven since the firm’s launch in 2002, Redside has consistently proven its ability to renovate, manage and transform properties to standards that are ecologically responsible, energy efficient and economically profitable. Redside has more than 1.3 million square feet under management and has developed more than 400,000 square feet. Redside views each project the firm takes on as an opportunity to demonstrate how buildings can have a restorative effect on the environment and enhance our quality of life.
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Gina Binole @ GBM Communications