Portland State University (PSU) held its grand opening for a new Viking Pavilion on April 9. It will house athletic events, concerts, gala dinners, and conferences, as well as athletic offices and classrooms. It’s located on the southern tip of the city’s South Park Blocks at the Peter W. Stott Center, PSU’s home for athletics and physical education.
Funding for the $51 million dollar project began in August 2013 and came primarily from private state bonds and student fees. However, the project was also done in partnership with the Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU), who provided $7.5 million in funding. In addition to the multi-event arena, the renovation has created student lounges, five general access classrooms, an OHSU Sports Medicine Center, administrative offices, and a weight room.
The whole structure covers 141,700 square feet. The arena will hold 3,400 seats and will host athletic events such as volleyball and basketball games. “I think the new pavilion is an awesome addition to the Portland State University campus,” said Hanan Margoles, a freshman at PSU. “I think it will add more possibilities for students to mingle, meet, and make connections,” said Margoles. “I am excited for it to be completed because it will be an awesome place to see games and events.” In an interview with Oregon Live, Barret Peery, head coach of PSU’s men’s basketball team, stated that the pavilion is “a game changer.” “We’ve never had anything like this at Portland State.”
The new structure is also extremely sustainable. It is designed to achieve LEED Gold certification. Food waste is tracked and composted, the water fixtures are efficient, and extensive use of reclaimed wood was utilized in the building process. The building is also pedestrian friendly and well connected to public transit, as well as equipped with a bicycle storage room.
One of the first events to be held in the new space was Techfest NW, a global technology conference held in the northwest region of the United States every year, which focuses on four tracks of content: food tech, health tech, inclusivity in tech culture, and smart cities and transit. Although the Viking Pavilion did not hold its grand opening until April 9, the arena was open for Techfest NW, which lasted from April 5 to April 6.
Upcoming events include future gala dinners, concerts, and a wellness fair and commencement exercises for PSU’s Graduate School of Education and The School of Business.
Many current PSU students are excited about this new, modernized facility and they hope incoming students will be as well.