Sustainable, By Design
By Casey Harwood, Brand Writer at Drawn | Photos courtesy of Drawn
Drawn is a boutique design and brand development agency based, here, in Eugene. While you may not be familiar with the agency, you’ve definitely seen its work: Rexius trucks, Opus Grows ads on city buses, Eugene Rec’s brand identity, ColdFire Brewing’s taproom on Mill Street.
The agency’s headquarters used to be on the third floor of Fifth Street Public Market, surrounded by plenty of aesthetic goodness and quality coffee to fuel creativity, but not a ton of space to grow. When Drawn Founder and Creative Director Bryan Taylor decided that it was time to seek out a new work space, he wanted it to have just as much character and even more of an emphasis on sustainability.
When he found the former home of Bourland Printing at 545 Monroe Street, the historic building felt dark and cramped, with low ceilings and narrow corridors, but Taylor saw potential in the 5,000-square-foot space. The significant renovation became a pilot project with BRING’s Construction Materials Recovery and Reuse Program.
Taylor estimates that 90 percent of the goods used in the remodel were salvaged, either from 545 Monroe itself or from other evolving spaces: All of Bourland’s doors were removed, rebuilt, and reused throughout the building, along with their metal desks and a beloved unicorn clock. A former school’s gym bleachers became Drawn’s steps, and seating was built from wood that had been abandoned at a lumberyard. All of the building’s light fixtures are re-purposed and have been retrofitted for energy-efficient LEDs. Sinks were procured from Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore, hardware from BRING Recycling, couches were bought from St. Vincent de Paul, and an entire wall was saved before a restaurant remodel and put to work at Drawn’s new office.
Of course, much of the material that Drawn removed from the building was also redistributed and put to use elsewhere, like the concrete slabs that were cut out to build a conference room and re-purposed as outdoor benches at the new Mahonia Building (another BRING CMRRP project).
“Everything we put into this building has a story that is helping to maintain its character, rather than making everything feel too new and sterile,” Taylor says. “And together, it’s all helping to write the next chapter at this building — from a feed store for 40 years to a printer for almost 40 more, and now, Drawn for the foreseeable future.”
The Bard Building, as Drawn now calls 545 Monroe Street, was named after Gaelic and Celtic storytellers—because that is essentially what Drawn does—and the collective and dynamic work space that helps facilitate that—a dream of Taylor’s, 15 years in the making — has finally come to fruition.
To learn more about Drawn and see their work, visit www.drawn.com
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