News

Meet PIVOT Architecture’s 2023 Fellows

Here comes double trouble! This summer, PIVOT has selected two students for the PIVOT Architecture Fellowship which is designed to let University of Oregon students explore a research project of their choosing and work within our project teams.

Josh Garhofer’s project focuses on the study of mobile home parks and manufactured housing looking at how their stigma influences neighborhoods. This stigma can lead to reduced property values, increased traffic, additional public infrastructure, increased risk of fire danger, and other issues. With affordable housing a pressing issue, his proposal aims to address this concern by understanding the viability of manufactured housing for creating sustainable, affordable housing developments that provide residents with safe and comfortable living conditions while changing the stigma of these types of housing.

Josh is from Seaside, OR and owns a home in Springfield, OR near a proposed manufactured housing community. He has a bachelor of arts in media communications with a minor in liberal studies from Oregon State University and is pursuing a master of architecture at the UO.

Willy Benjamin’s project looks at the feasibility of incorporating biogenic materials into conventional construction to sequester carbon and reduce the embodied energy of the built environment. With buildings contributing to nearly 40 percent of global energy-related CO2 emissions, regenerative buildings have the potential to significantly reduce the negative impact on the environment. His project aims to explore the barriers to and opportunities for the implementation of proven, yet alternative building materials.

Willy is originally from Hotchkiss, CO and served in the Peace Corps in Senegal. He has a bachelor of arts in international studies with minors in French, writing, and rhetoric from Trinity College and is pursuing a master of architecture at the UO.

About the PIVOT Fellowship

The PIVOT Fellowship is a means of fostering original thought about issues outside the daily routine or obvious future trajectory of our firm’s thought process. PIVOT selects fellows based on the nature of their project proposal and other factors. It is a paid position and the term runs from June until September. The fellowship is open to students for the summer preceding their final year of study at the University of Oregon. The fellows’ projects constitute half of the candidates’ responsibilities. Fellows will also be incorporated into PIVOT project teams for the duration of their term.

News

MEET PIVOT ARCHITECTURE’S 2024 FELLOW

With multifaceted affordable housing solutions an ever-growing need in the region, PIVOT’s 2024 Fellow will study the roles intentional community models can play in finding solutions for the housing and loneliness crises.

Abby Brown will investigate intentional communities as housing models in urban settings that offer holistic solutions while addressing the needs of individuals, local communities, and urban centers. Intentional communities are groups of people who choose to live collaboratively and strive to create a lifestyle that reflects their shared values. Housing models like cooperatives, co-housing, housing collectives, and eco-villages fall under the intentional community umbrella.

Abby believes that intentional communities foster social belonging, instill a sense of ownership in residents, reduce individual economic burdens, support urban density, and prioritize collective well-being. She became interested in exploring the potential that intentional community housing models have in creating more socially sustainable associations after a recent studio project at the UO.

Abby just completed her fourth year in the five-year Bachelor or Architecture program at the University of Oregon College of Design. She moved to Eugene from Magnolia, Texas, and spent time studying in Stuttgart, Germany. When she’s not working or studying, she likes cooking, photography, sewing, paddleboarding, camping, and anything that gets her outdoors

About the PIVOT Fellowship

The PIVOT Fellowship is a means of fostering original thought about issues outside the daily routine or obvious future trajectory of our firm’s thought process. PIVOT selects fellows based on the nature of their project proposal and other factors. It is a paid position and the term runs from June until September. The fellowship is open to students for the summer preceding their final year of study at the University of Oregon. The fellows’ projects constitute half of the candidates’ responsibilities. Fellows are also incorporated into PIVOT project teams for the duration of their term gaining real-world experience working side-by-side with our design teams.

News

It’s Been a Great 28 – Kari G. Turner Retiring from PIVOT Architecture

Kari G. Turner, who has infused PIVOT Architecture with true collaboration, creative design, caring mentorship, and deep thoughtfulness for 28 years, will “sparkle” in retirement.

Nicknamed “Sparkles” for her enthusiasm, sense of humor, and ability to connect with others, Kari has inspired her PIVOT colleagues and clients for nearly 30 years. Now she’s ready to find a new spark.

“Over the last three decades of working with Kari I have learned that she loves working with people almost as much as she loves 80’s pop music,” said Principal Toby Barwood. “Her ability to connect with people has allowed her to build strong teams that function well. Her work has earned the trust of one agency after another, leading to an expansion of PIVOT’s involvement in communities across the West.

“She taught me the value of focusing on the people in every project… and to sing along with Madonna,” Toby said.

Kari has spent her entire 28-year career at PIVOT Architecture. She began as an administrative assistant in 1995 while attending architecture school at the University of Oregon and was hired as a full-time designer in 1997. She received her license to practice architecture in Oregon in 2002 and became an associate at PIVOT in 2007. In 2015, Kari became a principal, leading many of PIVOT’s projects with transit agencies.

A succession plan has been developed over the last six months and Kari’s tasks have been transitioned to the other principals and PIVOT’s robust staff, ensuring that all our clients’ needs are being met. Her last day at PIVOT is April 12.

“Just like no piece of glitter is the same, Kari is a one-of-a-kind,” said Principal John Stapleton. “From her architectural chops to her sense of humor, she has mentored so many people in our firm and taught us all well – we’ll be able to ‘carry’ on,” he said.

“OK, maybe I could use a few more lessons on humor,” he said laughing. “But she’s done a great job of bringing up our staff to fill her role.”

Kari’s projects have been endowed with a sense of purpose and fun and reflect her thoughtfulness, compassion, and competence. Some of the most notable projects that she’s been involved with are Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) and transit center projects throughout the west including multiple projects in Utah and Washington, TriMet’s FX—the first BRT in Portland, Keizer Transit Center, Springfield Station, and the iconic EmX—one of the nation’s first BRT systems. Additional community projects include The Eugene Family YMCA, Roseburg Public Safety Center, and multiple facilities for the City of Eugene.

“When I started my career, I had no idea how big of a role transit would play in my life and career,” Kari said. “I love the connections that transit provides for communities. I love the collaboration with other talented designers, and I love the passion of the people who work every day to make our communities welcoming places for everyone.”

Transportation has always been something close to Kari’s heart. She is a frequent bus ride, a former board member for Better Eugene-Springfield Transportation, and a regular attendee and occasional presenter at MPact Transit + Community Conference (formerly Rail~Volution).

Kari believes establishing connections with people is critical in making projects a success. She’s been an advocate for universal design, the practice of creating facilities that are accessible to all users no matter their ability.

“Kari has been a strident advocate for public transportation and accessible design and she used that passion to make gorgeous architecture that worked for everyone,” Toby said. “She’s been a joyful mentor of young designers, always willing to pass on the lessons her career has taught her.”

Kari’s not quite sure what her next steps will be, but it’s a safe bet that they’ll lead to a fair amount of backpacking trips in the wilds of Oregon with her husband Garrett. Happy hiking, Kari!

 

Project

The New Eugene Family YMCA

Thousands of people rely on the Eugene Family YMCA each day. Whether it’s for fitness, healthy living, child care, youth development, or a social meeting place, the Y really is a center of the community. Inside and out, the contemporary, 75,000-SF multi-purpose facility enables the nonprofit to grow and diversify how it serves the community in creating a brighter future.

Read more about the project.