Web design firm ISITE Design christened its new Northwest Portland office last week with a party, showing off a spiffy new space replete with bike racks, reclaimed wood details and a gas fireplace.
The build out of the office, completed by Portland-based design-build firm Siteworks, also features some futuristic sustainability features worthy of note.
ISITE, which has just over 40 employees in Portland, purchased the 18,000-square-foot building near Northwest Pettygrove and 20th and overhauled it with financing help from the Portland Development Commission.
Jean-Pierre Veillet, the principal of Siteworks and the brains behind EcoFlats, a net-zero apartment complex that opened last year, took photographer Cathy Cheney and I on a tour of ISITE's new digs.
Reclaimed shipping containers house an airy conference room. ISITE Creative Director Patrick Craig said the rusty finish was inspired by the patina of a fire-damaged shipping container.
ISITE Design worked with Siteworks to create an office space that is homey and conducive to collaboration. Reclaimed wood from Viridian Wood Products provides accents throughout the space.
Daylight and ventilation is a key attribute of the office. Cubicle walls are covered with natural felt — "That's what goes under saddles," says Siteworks' Jean-Pierre Viellet — a sound absorber. The soft floor was installed by the gym that used the space before ISITE moved in.
The fireplace is especially attractive on a chilly January afternoon.
Interior offices feature their own skylights to let in more natural light. The custom-built LED light fixtures above each desk are wired so that the light level can be adjusted with the click of a mouse.
A bright hallway leads from ISITE's offices to a cafe space and additional office space on the south side of the building.
Siteworks' Jean-Pierre Viellet shows off the doors from the shipping container which lead into the Brainstorm Room where 14-foot ceilings and a magnetized white board facilitate big ideas.
Jean Pierre Veillet is a Portland-based artist, designer, and builder. Trained as a sculptor, Veillet takes a spatially informed, socially conscious, and aesthetically thoughtful approach to projects from tiny retail renovations to ground-up eco-developments. With his firm, Siteworks, Veillet has taken his background in site-specific art and mixed it with a serious shot of writing, poetry, and experience to produce spaces that communicate with people through objects, design, and elegance. Veillet is intrigued by the intimacy that can be created between people and their environments, and by the possibilities of social engineering on a much larger scale. As a developer, Veillet is working on Ecoflats, a green project that incorporates environmentally sensitive elements from a standard curbside recycling program to a reward-based integration of the building’s social scene with its energy credits. He has completed warm interiors for restaurants like Genoa, historically referential interiors for Pearl District clothing stores like Lizard Lounge, and dramatic exterior renovations, and is currently pushing Sitework’s development projects side by side with his own creative passions.