A music venue becomes a veterans village

Pickathon into HomesThis past summer's Pickathon music festival featured a breathtaking new Treeline Stage, designed and built by PSU School of Architecture students and faculty, from nearly 700 wooden trusses handmade with meticulous care by the student designers. When the festival ended, the students disassembled the stage, leaving the trusses intact. Now, students are helping to transform those same trusses into their next incarnation — a village of sleeping pods for homeless Clackamas County veterans, who will find much-needed sanctuary in these small dwellings as they plan their transition to permanent housing.

Joining dozens of architecture alumni, military veterans, community volunteers, Clackamas County employees and commissioners, and housing advocates, students have devoted time and effort to framing the sleeping pod walls, placing the roof trusses and adding the sidewall sheathing. The first phase of the project involves building 10 of the tiny dwellings, with the ultimate goal of creating 30 sleeping pods in total. The dwellings are being built on a site near the Clackamas County offices and will be moved to the village site nearby, ready for veterans to move in just in time for the winter.

Building Veterans PodPSU Architecture and Public Interest Design students, with faculty Todd Ferry and Sergio Palleroni, are leading the design of the residential portion of the village, as well as coordinating the overall efforts of the many organizational partners, including Clackamas County, the City of Portland, Communitecture, Born and Raised Construction, Catholic Charities, the Village Coalition and City Repair. Architecture firm SRG Partnership designed the prototype for the sleeping pods, the original version of which is currently a transitional residence for formerly homeless women in the Kenton Women's Village.

With assistant professor Travis Bell, School of Architecture Director Clive Knights taught the architectural design studio course that resulted in the creation of the Treeline Stage.

“It's a remarkable experience for our students to collaborate in the shared ambitions of so many community players and to learn how significant the creative contribution of design can become in the pursuit of the common good,” said Professor Knights.

Karen O’Donnell Stein, PSU School of Architecture



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