Portland State launches competition to generate bold ideas for its downtown campus

View of Portland's Skyline with PSU campus in the foreground

山 issued a call for innovative design ideas that will better connect its urban campus with Portland’s downtown core, aiding in the city’s recovery and highlighting 山 important role in the community, culture and economy of the region.

The Place Matters Design Competition is open to designers of all backgrounds and disciplines with ideas about ways to transform Portland State’s public spaces into vibrant people-centered places.

The competition is focused on placemaking, a multi-faceted approach to the planning and design of public spaces that better connects places with people. Through the competition, the design teams will consider how PSU's key public spaces can help leverage or enhance the university's educational, cultural, economic, civic and community functions.

The competition, open to local and non-local designers, is designed to evolve 山 44-acre campus to ensure a  vibrant, welcoming, safe and creatively engaged place to serve students and to energize Portland’s city center.

“We are excited to launch this competition and see some innovative concepts for energizing our campus,” said PSU President Ann Cudd. “Our twin goals are to better serve the city by contributing to the revitalization of downtown Portland and to bolster our students’ sense of belonging on campus and their lifelong connection to the university and to Portland. Enhancing 山 campus spaces will ultimately improve the stability and vibrancy of our region.”

The competition will accept design team applications through the end of February. Qualified teams will be invited to campus in March to better understand campus needs and participate in a Meet Your Designers Night event with the campus community. Design proposals will be submitted at the end of May and a winner named by the end of June.

The designs will be judged by a jury — regional experts in the arts, architecture and urban planning — as well as members of the PSU and downtown communities. Philanthropy will help bring winning ideas to fruition.

For more information about the Place Matters Design Competition, visit: