PUARL - Portland Urban Architecture Research Laboratory

Photo of the PUARL interior

2009 - 2010

University of Oregon
PUARL Research Class
Dr. Hajo Neis

ARCH 601 Ė Spring 2009

PUARL (Portland Urban Architecture Research Laboratory)


The Portland Urban Architecture Research Lab (PUARL) is part of the architecture department at the University of Oregon in Eugene and Portland. The main purpose of PUARL is to conduct and promote activities in urban architecture research and urban design research: We integrate sustainability into the architectural and urban design process by conducting basic and applied research throughout the Portland region (and also other parts of the nation and world) in urban morphology, urban building typologies and urban and architectural processes, for civic groups, public agencies, professional firms, and development interests. The PUARL is a Portland-based research laboratory asking questions about Portland’s urban environment and urbanism globally. The entity is growing and looking outward for further opportunities and requests for research about past and contemporary architecture and urban environments, and urban sustainability. Students are encouraged to participate in active research projects and to generate their own research. Previous work can be viewed on our website: puarl.uoregon.edu Professor Howard Davis will teach the PUARL Research Seminar Arch 607 in the Winter of 2010, and Professor Hajo Neis will continue to provide independent PUARL research studies during his sabbatical leave all of 2010.

Areas of Research and Study:

Tigard Urban Corridor
Students have been working along with Prof. James Pettinari, Prof. Dr. Hajo Neis, private consulting firms and the City of Tigard to imagine an alternative future for the urban corridor development in Tigard.

Portland Urban Grid Atlas
Past research has focused on the existing three phases of Portlandís evolving urban morphology- the square, rectangular, and irregular blocks. Current work will include compilation of the atlas project as a whole and comparative grid studies in West Coast cities.

Bibliographical Research
A research opportunity is available for a student interested in generating a bibliography of books on feeling, wellness, and happiness as it relates to urban design and architecture.

Qualitative Research on the Environment: Wholeness and Sustainability
A research opportunity to explore qualitative aspects of the built environment is available for students, interested in the quality of the environment. Previous research has focused on health, wellness, and feeling as it relates to urban design and architecture. New: Urban sustainability and the quality of urban structure. (base research)

PUARL Symposium Proceedings Publication
In this project we are looking a for a student who can help with the preparation of the Proceedings publication of the International PUARL Symposium from fall of 2009. (applied research)

For other PUARL research projects a more detailed list will be made available at the beginning of the spring quarter 2009.

Meeting: Monday 5-6PM and by appointment.
Credit: 1-6 credits

Previous work can be viewed on experimental PUARL website (puarl.uoregon.edu)

Prof. Dr. Hajo Neis, February 2009

List of Additional Projects for Research Study:

  1. Preparation of PUARL SYMPOSIUM on Urban Corridors for February of 2010.
  2. Morphology, Typology and Sustainability: Study of the concepts of pattern language and sustainability.
  3. Projects on qualitative aspects in urban architecture and urban sustainability.
  4. Process and Generative Process
  5. Self-initiated thesis research and how your thesis project can contribute to the PUARL research.
  6. Portland Urban Plan – City of Portland: Eco-Pattern Districts and Neighborhoods.
  7. Bibliography on Architectural Research

Need for Practical Activities

  1. Grant writing
  2. New Forms of Publishing


  1. Linda Groat and Dvid Wang. Architecture Research Methods. John Wiley, New York 2002.
  2. ACSA President Tanzer on Research

PUARL Research Class lists
ARCH 601/ Spring 2008
Ellen Lind - Urban Sustainability

ARCH 601/Fall 2008
Sheena Shook Sustainability / Atlas
Courtney Nunez - Atlas/ Laddís Additon
Michael Harmon - Atlas / Kingís Hill
Erin Reschke - Atlas / Rose City Park
Morgan McIntosh - Sustainable Bibliography

Jenny Cestnik - Atlas / Laurelhurst
Trevor Jones - Atlas / Mt. Tabror

Winter 2009/ARCH 601
Kelsey Jensen - Sustainability / Atlas
Sheena Shook - Sustainability / Atlas
Lauren Joyner - Sustainability / Atlas
Gloria Sham - Sustainability / Atlas
Andres Seminario - Atlas
Justin Cloyd - Atlas / Tigard
Jenny Cestnik - Atlas

Justin Cloyd - Atlas / Tigard/Symposium/ACSA
Rebecca Littman Smith - Altas / Symposium