Friday, May 18, 2007

Tram Snags National Design Award

OK, it was expensive. But more people are riding it than expected, and now the Portland aerial tram has won a prestigious national design award:
The Portland aerial tram has won of one of the nation's most prestigious design awards, the American Institute of Steel Construction's Presidential Award of Excellence for 2007.

The award recognizes innovative use of steel from both an architectural and structural perspective. The tram was one of 65 projects judged by a panel of design and construction industry professionals. The Denver Art Museum was chosen as co-winner.
Of course, that innovation was only necessary because at some point folks realized that you couldn't have a tram terminal shaking the bejeezus out of the MRI machines in the hospital building it's attached to, and so they had to figure out a way to self-anchor the thing on the side of a big hill--but hey, that's the can-do Portland spirit at work! Ten years from now, the City's money will look like a bargain for the return.