Photo of Harder Mechanical
Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Casey Braunger

Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Casey Braunger

Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Casey Braunger

Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Casey Braunger

Photo of Harder Mechanical

Harder Mechanical

History for A New Generation

A fifth-generation Portland family business, Harder Mechanical needed a new, modern headquarters to last them for another 80 years. Because reinvention tends to be part of their business—they gain expertise in the newest processes, be it mill work or high-tech manufacturing, and periodically transform themselves along the way—they were looking explicitly for an innovative showcase office. After learning who they are, how they view their work, and what they needed in a collaborative working session, our design encompasses a beautiful, durable brick building using renewable cross-laminated timber (CLT). The new Harder Mechanical building will last for decades, aligning with and improving the Elliott neighborhood in a way that’s both timeless and exceedingly modern.

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Portland, Oregon
COMPLETED IN 2021
  • 2 stories
  • 25,000 sq. ft.
MARKET

Office

DISCIPLINES

Architecture , Interiors , Brand

PROJECT TYPE

Workplace Interiors , Corporate

PROJECT CONTACT

officemsc@ankrommoisan.com


Architecture Story

Timelessly Modern

Architecture Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Casey Braunger

Architecture Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Casey Braunger

Architecture Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Casey Braunger

Architecture Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Ankrom Moisan Architects

Architecture Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Ankrom Moisan Architects

Located along Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in Portland’s historic Elliott neighborhood, with its brick buildings and early 20th Century residences, the new Harder Mechanical building needed to stay rooted in the past while being built for the future. Because the owner is a mechanical and plumbing subcontractor and will self perform their own scope, the Harder team became an integral part of the design process. Their desire for an innovative approach—to not only the design but also the design process—led to an adapted integrated project delivery method. This allowed for close collaboration with Harder, the General Contractor, Swinerton, and their trade partners to achieve efficiencies and innovative construction methods that meet both design and construction goals. The desire to showcase Harder's own work and innovation led to exposed ceilings and exposed structure and mechanical systems. It is here where the Cross Laminated Timber structural system becomes a central design element. The CLT simultaneously provides environmental benefits both to the occupants and in broader terms, along with time and cost saving installation. The team leveraging Swinerton's expertise in this area. Externally, the company's rich history combined with the historic neighborhood led to the selection of a both durable and beautiful dark brick facade reminiscent of the surrounding context. This traditional material combined with a contemporary aesthetic allows the building to become part of MLK's future whilst respecting it's past.

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Interior Story

Where Work Gets Done

Architecture Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Casey Braunger

Architecture Photo of Harder Mechanical

Ⓒ Casey Braunger

The Interior Design for Harder Mechanical Contractor's new Headquarters focuses on daylighting, efficient space planning and greater opportunity of chance employee interactions. Upon walking into this space, one is greeted immediately with a reception desk along with a robust metal and concrete staircase that leads to the center of the second level and opens up into a two-story space with skylights. The Interior design emphasizes the modern concept of open floor plans and combines it with the more traditional concept of private offices and conference rooms around the perimeter of the building. This design can only be successful in maintaining good daylighting throughout, with the addition of skylights throughout, the central atrium and interior glazing this natural light can reach into the center of the building for the benefit of all employees. The industrial aesthetic of the interior, balances raw with refined elements, warm with cool color pallets and exposed yet precise details throughout the interior construction. This speaks to Harder Mechanical Contractor's persistence, success and longevity over decades of success within their industry and dare we say a timeless design for years to come.

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Brand Story

Cutting-Edge, Yet Classic

Harder Mechanical, located in Portland’s historic Elliott neighborhood, with its brick buildings and traditional 20th Century homes, has a five-generation legacy to uphold. They’ve passed down the business for eight decades, and they plan to continue. Our brand design for the company centers on this idea of longevity, history, and simple, classic aesthetics. While they’re cutting edge in their approach to construction, they’re old-fashioned in their commitment to quality, durable materials. Every decade, they reinvent how they work. They once did millwork. Today, they use high-tech process manufacturing across a range of materials. To honor Harder’s constant reinvention and lineage, we incorporate historic photos that showcase their long-standing tradition of expert craftsmanship. Outside, subtle yet robust, an illuminated metal sign lights with the name “Harder.” Our interior and exterior graphic expressions and materials are strong and traditionally masculine; our entire design language speaks to longevity, built with durable, timeless materials for people who know what they’re doing and where they’re going.

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