Over the past week, a miniature Portland was built in Denver. When it was finished on Tuesday, over 500 people came to spend an evening sipping drinks and eating appetizers in the mini-city while learning about the sustainable industry Portland offers.
The City of Portland collaborated with over 30 Portland-based sustainable industry companies to create the model, called PDX Lounge, for the International Greenbuild conference. The exhibit was meant to demonstrate just how great Portland's sustainable technologies are to green building industry professionals from across the country.
Instead of physically representing Portland's geography—which might have been really cool—the exhibit “conceptually displayed Portland neighborhoods,” according to Stephanie Swanson, the coordinator of the project and communications manager for the City of Portland Office of Sustainable Development. Swanson and two other City of Portland employees created representations of these concepts in the exhibit space using Miller Paint and ReForm Furnishings furniture, both sustainable industry companies.
Here's what they felt represented Portland best: Live, demonstrated through a kitchen and living room area; Think, shown as a whiteboard and office furniture; Move, illustrated with long planks painted to look like bike lanes; Build, represented by a wall-length slideshow with images of Portland including community gardens and the light rail; and Connect, demonstrated aptly enough with a bar.
Although it may not seem like these concepts relate directly to Portland, Swanson said that the overall effect recreated our city perfectly.
“It was so classically Portland the way the business owners were so generous and giving throughout the evening,” she said. “Everything about it smelled, felt and tasted like Portland.”
More information about the exhibit and the conference can be found on www.pdxlounge.com.