OMSI Announces Master Developer
Jul 20, 2018
PORTLAND, Ore. (July 20, 2018) – The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) announced today it has selected the master developer with whom it will partner on the development of its 18-acre riverfront campus. Gerding Edlen, a Portland, Oregon-based real estate investment and development firm, will provide strategic support and guidance for the OMSI team, working with them and other firms on a long-term vision for the development of the site.
“We were fortunate to have had so many qualified firms express interest in this project are delighted to partner with Gerding Edlen,” said OMSI President and CEO Nancy Stueber. “I was impressed by their demonstrated expertise in developing transformative urban neighborhoods like the Brewery Blocks and South Waterfront, and their ability to work with the City of Portland and other public agencies in securing public funds for public / private partnerships.”
Multiple firms, including many local entities, will be part of the development team led by Gerding Edlen and will play important roles in the development of the OMSI property:
- SERA Architects: Urban Design & Planning
- The Farkas Group: Infrastructure Financing & Development Agreement Advisor
- URBAN.SYSTEMS: Smart City Technology Advisor
- Long Haul Capital: Impact Capital Advisor
“We are very excited to begin this partnership with OMSI,” said Jill Sherman, partner at Gerding Edlen. “Our team has been truly energized by OMSI’s vision and the opportunity to participate in the creation of a new, innovative and sustainable district that will benefit the wider community and enhance OMSI’s mission.”
Over the past two decades, Gerding Edlen has been committed to owning and developing mixed-use, urban-infill sustainable properties that strengthen communities and neighborhoods in major cities across the United States. As early proponents of sustainable development, the firm has more than 75 LEED certified or certified pending properties in its portfolio and is committed to integrating leading-edge sustainability innovations into its properties.
Here in Portland, the firm’s projects include the Brewery Blocks, Wieden + Kennedy, OHSU Center for Health and Healing, along with multiple buildings in the South Waterfront, Vestas’ North American Headquarters, Indigo @ Twelve | West, Pacific Northwest College of Art’s Main Campus building, multiple buildings on the PSU Campus, Central City Concern Old Town Recovery Center, and numerous affordable housing projects.
“I am thrilled this Oregon icon is building on its strengths and unlocking the potential for such exciting development on the east side of Portland,” said Sen. Ron Wyden. “Today’s news marks a great step forward for OMSI, which enjoys a well-earned reputation as a go-to place for science education and so much more for our community.”
Next steps for OMSI and the Gerding Edlen team include a planning process, which will lead to an application for a Central City Master Plan and a Development Agreement with the City of Portland for public infrastructure. Gerding Edlen will also begin to work with its team to develop innovative infrastructure solutions that they hope to implement as part of the redevelopment.
“Today marks an important inflection point for the thriving Central Eastside district,” said Rep. Earl Blumenauer. “We are grateful for OMSI’s leadership, not only as an anchor institution for the state and region, but for its commitment to building community and harnessing innovation.”
In addition to creating a center of excellence and sustainability for the region, the OMSI district will also serve as a hub for the city’s Innovation Quadrant and feature a mix of uses and jobs, including growing creative industries, education facilities, research opportunities and visitor attractions such as open space and improved access to the river.
“I’m excited to see that OMSI has chosen a proven local development partner to help realize the OMSI Master Plan vision,” said Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler. “The OMSI District has long been a priority development opportunity for the City on the east bank of the river. The City of Portland is committed to being a strong public partner to OMSI and Gerding Edlen and I will provide the direct access and leadership needed to move the project forward. Portland’s future is intimately linked to education and innovation and the OMSI campus development within the Innovation Quadrant is a tremendous opportunity to establish a dynamic and thriving district that is accessible, provides equitable opportunities and is a place where people can gather, learn, work and live.”
The property development will also leverage the major investment in mass transportation by TriMet through the OMSI/SE Water Ave station and Tilikum Crossing Bridge, which have connected the district to the greater Portland Metro Area like never before.
The land where OMSI is located and its surrounding areas were donated by Portland General Electric in 1993. PGE continues to support OMSI and the central east side as a big part of the region’s economic future.
“We are pleased to see the OMSI District continue to build momentum as a showplace for sustainability and innovation,” said Dave Robertson, PGE’s vice president of public policy. “We look forward to working with OMSI and other property owners in the area to envision and eventually implement the kind of smart energy systems that will be a cornerstone for our clean energy future.”
Founded in 1944, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) is one of the nation’s leading science museums, a world-class tourist attraction, and an award-winning educational resource for the kid in each of us. OMSI operates the largest museum-based outdoor science education program in the country and provides traveling and community outreach programs that bring science learning opportunities to schools and community organizations in nearly every county in Oregon. OMSI is located at 1945 SE Water Avenue, Portland, OR 97214. For general information, call 503.797.4000 or visit omsi.edu. Connect with the museum on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Gerding Edlen is a leading real estate investment, development and asset and property management firm recognized for its expertise in creating and owning highly sustainable, urban infill, office, residential and mixed-use properties. Founded in 1996, the firm engages a socially responsible approach to real estate by cultivating properties that strengthen communities, minimize impact on the environment and add profound value to residents and tenants. Gerding Edlen’s efforts are guided by a set of criteria, known as the Principles of Place, where community plays a pivotal role alongside design, technology and sustainability in the success of their properties. Gerding Edlen’s development entity is a recognized national leader of sustainable development, which includes more than 75 LEED certified or certified pending properties.