The Oregon Symphony is relocating its administrative and ticket offices to a new rental space in closer proximity to its main performance venue, the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. Starting from September 1, the Symphony will embark on a seven-year lease for a third-floor office at Pacific Center, located at 851 S.W. Sixth Ave. in Portland. Janice Romano, the vice president of finance and administration for the nonprofit music organization, confirmed this information. Currently, the Symphony operates from Pittock Block at 921 S.W. Washington St.
The new location is conveniently situated near the Judy Kafoury Center for Youth Arts, indicating a potential expansion of the city’s cultural district. As part of the agreement, the Symphony will also have access to the former Men’s Wearhouse space on the street level, which could serve as a rehearsal or community area. The Symphony will have use of the ground-floor space for a minimum of two years, after which the landlord, Schnitzer Properties, may seek another tenant, leading to the Symphony relinquishing it, according to a report in the Portland Business Journal.
The Symphony’s recent developments indicate that renovation work is now underway inside the former Men’s Wearhouse. Romano shared additional lease details on Monday.
The Symphony will occupy approximately 10,000 square feet on the third floor. The decision to eliminate the walk-up ticket office, since it received minimal foot traffic on a weekly basis, means that ticket sales will also be conducted within the office space. The landlord will cover the cost of tenant improvements in the office as part of the lease agreement. Romano mentioned that the Symphony would save around 20 percent on rent compared to its previous location at Pittock Block, where it had been situated for the past 25 years.
Regarding the separate former Men’s Wearhouse area, which spans about 4,800 square feet, its specific use has yet to be determined. Romano suggested that it could serve as a rehearsal and community space. The landlord has committed to installing new carpeting and paint.
After issuing a request for proposals, the Symphony considered approximately 15 other locations before finalizing its decision. The nonprofit was represented by Robert Greenfield, an associate vice president at the real estate brokerage firm Colliers, which conveniently has its office within Pacific Center. Schnitzer Properties owns the building, and Jordan Schnitzer, the president of the company, is a well-known arts patron. Arlene Schnitzer, the Hall’s namesake, was Jordan Schnitzer’s mother.
Pacific Center is just a three-minute walk away from the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, providing a close and convenient location for the Symphony’s team to work together. Romano expressed her satisfaction with the proximity, stating, “It’s nice to be together as a team, close to the Hall.”