July 14, 2015

Aerial view of concept for courthouse at west Hawthorne Bridgehead site.

Multnomah County has selected local contractor teams for the design and construction of the new downtown courthouse. A team led by SRG Partnership was selected for architecture and engineering services, while Hoffman Construction was selected for the Construction Manager/General Contractor (CMGC) contract.  Both firms are based in Portland.

The winning design and construction teams were selected from groups of finalists based upon a number of qualifications. Experience building in downtown Portland and experience designing and building courthouses were among the qualifications rated. Both SRG and Hoffman have experience on large public buildings in the Pacific Northwest.

SRG is designing the Knight Cancer Research Building for Oregon Health Sciences University at South Waterfront. The firm’s significant public projects include Bellevue City Hall and Portland State University’s Shattuck Hall renovation. For the county courthouse project, SRG will work with CGL-RicciGreene, a New York architecture firm that specializes in courthouses and other justice facilities. CGL-RicciGreene brings significant expertise with county courthouses of similar size, complexity and intensity of use to the Multnomah County courthouse.  

Hoffman Construction has built many of the Pacific Northwest’s major buildings. Examples in Portland include the Mark O. Hatfield Federal Courthouse, the First and Main office building (across the street from the new courthouse site), and the Multnomah County headquarters. Other major public buildings constructed by Hoffman include the Seattle Justice Center and Olympia City Hall.  

“We have selected two top tier firms from Portland that have great national reputations,” said County Chair Deborah Kafoury. “Selection of the contractor teams marks a major step in taking this long-awaited project from dream to reality.”

In the CMGC contracting model, the construction contractor joins the project team during design. The early involvement by the construction contractor is designed to reduce costs, risks and schedule time. The CMGC contract method was most recently used for the county’s Sellwood Bridge project. Hoffman has experience on more than 30 CMGC projects since CMGC legislation was approved in 1991.

SRG Partnership and Hoffman Construction have a long history of collaboration on projects including OHSU’s West Campus in 2001, the city of Hillsboro’s Hops baseball stadium, and the $300 million Oregon State Hospital Replacement Project in Salem.  

County Commissioner Judy Shiprack is impressed by the local experience of the architect and builder. “They know and respect one another's work,” she said. “I’m confident they will work closely with the owner -- Multnomah County -- to build a courthouse in a manner that reflects our values and that our community will be proud of.”

The county’s goals for the project include building the courthouse on schedule and on budget, maximizing diverse participation by subcontractors and workforce, and using effective sustainable practices for design and construction.

The proposals from SRG and Hoffman demonstrated a commitment to making diversity an integral part of their project approach. As the 2012 recipient of the National Association of Minority Contractors Oregon “champion award,” Hoffman is an industry leader in increasing diversity and social equity on large construction projects. SRG’s outreach and diversity program actively pursues minority and women-owned business enterprises and establishes scopes of work small enough to allow a broad spectrum of qualified firms to participate.

The downtown courthouse is Multnomah County’s largest single facility project and will provide a significant economic opportunity for local contractors and the workforce. The project is estimated to cost $250 million. The building will be built on county land at the west end of the Hawthorne Bridge. Design work will begin this year, with construction starting in 2017 and completion in 2020.

For information, visit /central-courthouse.