The Springs at Happy Valley, Happy Valley, Oregon: EFA 2024 Design Showcase Honorable Mention

Initial plans for The Springs at Happy Valley involved a traditional, remote site for the new independent living, assisted living, and memory care community in Happy Valley, Ore.

But when the opportunity to integrate with a new mixed-use lifestyle center presented itself, the project shifted gears to join the development, delivering a fresh approach to senior living.

Opened in January 2023, Happy Valley’s indoor and outdoor amenities offer options for entertainment, wellness, and social activities, including a pool and spa, movie theater, chapel, and makerspace. Dining options include a dining hall, cafés, pub, and teahouse.

LRS Architects helps prioritize connections

Jurors appreciated the unconventional approach by the project team, including submitting firm LRS Architects (Portland, Ore.), to locate amenities and communal spaces, such as pedestrian pathways and park-like courtyards, along major thoroughfares on the ground floor. The solution reinforces natural connections while encouraging residents to join in.

Happy Valley pays homage to area’s agricultural history

Drawing inspiration from the agricultural history of the area, the project incorporates a mix of regional materials to create a warm, bright “modern farmhouse” aesthetic designed to resonate with residents as well as locals.

For example, gabled rooftops recall the familiar shape of nearby barns and farmhouses, and brick and stone accents deliver a residential feel while tying in with the design of the lifestyle center. A “deconstructed barn” amenity space with a glass roof at the center of the community was a jury favorite.

Additionally, the project earned praise as one of the first senior living communities in the U.S. to earn FitWel Certification, underscoring the client’s commitment to health and wellness.

For more on this year’s Design Showcase winners, go here.

Anne DiNardo is editor-in-chief of Environments for Aging and can be reached at