* leftbank spaces

Follow this link to see a slideshow of some of the incredible spaces that add up to Leftbank.  The building is nearly full and the community nearly complete.  To learn about workspaces that are still available or to join the wait list, email us – or click the ‘leasing’ tag to the left for more information… more

suite 115

suite 115 is home to GamePlan and Oregon Wave Energy Trust.

GamePlan is a consulting firm specializing in management and growth strategy, and marketing communications for mission-driven organizations.

Oregon Wave Energy Trust (OWET) is a nonprofit, public-private partnership that is helping to responsibly develop ocean energy by connecting stakeholders, supporting research and development, and engaging in public outreach and policy work.

streetside bike parking!

just yesterday the city installed fourteen — count ‘em, 14! — staple racks around the perimeter of the building.      more

coffee break idea

a great way to casually and organically discover more about Leftbank is to check out the new Points of Interests signs hanging around the building.

these signs were developed by Leftbank’s own andy powell of gallopowell studio to highlight several particularly sign-worthy spots around the building. they will most likely become a permanent installation (after tweaks to make them more permanent).

for guidance, you can go to the Directional Signage – the floor plan signs that are mounted on pieces of wood (from the Leftbank renovation!) and hanging in front of the tile walls on each floor (see pic above). the Points of Interest are marked by asterisks on these signs.

and, if you want more of the jazz history of the building, check this out.

enjoy the tour!

Leftbank Café Takes Shape

Leftbank’s Project Manager Brian Keicher, and Site Superintendent Hans Arenz are swinging hammers.  Not that those guys don’t regularly do whatever it takes to get the job done, but it’s fun to have photo documentation.

hans-cafe worker-in-cafe

The long-awaited, eagerly anticipated Leftbank Café is nearly complete!  Feels like I’ve been asked about it by nearly everybody who lives or works within a 2 mile radius of Leftbank in the last month.  With construction wrapping up this week, the café is right on schedule to move in as we close out the month of May, and they’ll be open for business on Monday, June 1st.  Our hungry neighborhood is about to have a friendly spot with Stumptown Coffee and brewed-in-the-building Upright Beer on tap.  The menu offerings include organic, locally sourced ingredients and regional wines, too.

I’m about to have something besides a cheese sandwich in a brown bag for lunch, and I couldn’t be happier about it.

steel never tasted so good

I recently talked to Hans, Leftbank’s superintendent, and he told me a fabulous story of steel recycling that i want to share…

All of the steel removed from Leftbank during the renovation – all 6-8 tons of it – was recycled by D&R Salvage, a husband and wife team. The husband – Ronny – is a recovering drug addict, which no doubt affects the way he lives and works.

Dring their time with Leftbank, Ronny and his wife would pull up to the building in their truck and load it up with steel to sell. They kept only as much money from the steel as they needed to live, using the rest of the money to make meals that they drove around in their truck and handed out to Portland’s homeless.

Hans told me that they recycled every possible piece of steel from the building, right down to the wire backing of the lathe and plaster that they would beat until all the plaster was removed.

This is another example of how present and thoughtful the people working here have been during the process of creating Leftbank. At the risk of sounding sugary, it’s really an honor to be here. This experience has reminded me several times to stop for a minute, take a breath, and figure out the best way to get something done that puts people first…

tropical salvage

I found my way to joining this Leftbank team by accident, or maybe fate – a story too long for a blog post.  Never before had my work world been about property development.  And no one was more surprised than I was to find myself here.  What I have always done is work with a deep sense of purpose, and that’s why this surprising position ended up feeling like the perfect fit.

People don’t typically think of commercial property as a mission-driven thing.  Caring about sustainability, positive change and real relationship is unexpected coming from a development team.  But beyond the thrill of being part of a team that does focus on all these things, working to build community around Leftbank introduces me time and again to people doing the most innovative and inspiring work in our fair city.

Leftbank led me to cross paths with Tim O’Brien and Kevin Havice of Tropical Salvage recently.  After 20 minutes of talking with them, I knew that I wanted to have some of their incredible furniture at Leftbank, and that everyone should hear their story.  From an unassuming shop in SE Portland, these folks do work that is sustainable, ethical, and real.  I urge you to explore it for yourself.  The wood they salvage has such spirit, that you must see and touch it to understand.

Look for their work in the common areas at Leftbank.  The Hive will be filled with fine desks that they’ve crafted.  Below is a bit about them in their own words.  Go to the website, go visit their shop.

“Old Wood. New Use. Positive Change. We salvage tropical hardwoods in Indonesia and use them to build quality, hand-made, solid wood furniture. The salvaged wood beautifully expresses its history. The effects of nails, seasoning cracks, bore holes, wild-growth grain figure and mineral accumulation are evident in many products. They are a wonderful testament to the wood’s historical richness and new eco-positive life. And it comes at an exceptional value; you may not find a better price on solid wood furniture, anywhere.

“100 percent of our wood is salvaged; none of it comes from standing trees. We are a Fair Trade company. Tropical Salvage brings good, steady jobs to an area in North Central Java where unemployment and underemployment affects nearly half of the population who is eligible to work. Part of our mission is to demonstrate to people that industry and markets can provide equivalent (or superior) goods and services, at comparable (or lower) prices, while having a positive social and environmental impact; and, therefore, to have people demand this in the market. Tropical Salvage is a partner in, and contributes funds to, the Jepara Forest Conservancy (JFC), a non-profit organization in North Central Java. The JFC is restoring natural tropical forest ecosystems; creating sustainable livelihoods in organic agriculture; and educating people about primary tropical forests.”

hive talk

Leftbank is about work and about community.  Bees do that like nobody’s business.  Taking a cue from the bee, we’re building a hive.  The Leftbank vision relies on thoughtful, practical work spaces.  For many businesses and groups, ideal workspace is a rentable private office.  For others, a place to land, reliable office amenities, and the inspiring buzz of collective work is a better fit.  This is the model for the hive.

The hive is at the heart of Leftbank, a few steps from the lobby and the café, but contained soundly as its own place.  Hive membership begins with a 6 month agreement and includes a desk, a lockable filing cabinet, a coat locker, and access to the kitchenette, the copy/print room, and 2 reservable private conference rooms.  Membership will cost less than $500 per month.

The hive, like all of Leftbank, will ultimately become what the community in it creates.  Its current trajectory and early momentum are due in large part to a handful of people we want to thank here.  You who shared your time and insight with us in the last couple of months, thank you!  You know who you are, and we hope to bump into you in the hive soon.

but is it ‘green’?


At the request of some friends, we’ve put together a list of reasons why people might call this ‘green’… more

Mezzanine

The mezz is the super dynamic extra layer between the ground and upper floors… it involves a loading dock, a catwalk, a triangle shaped room and some of the most visible space in the entire building. It spans from the northern corner of the old Hazelwood building to the far end of the storage building, connected by a new catwalk through the lobby. more