VISITING 5MLK: CROSSROADS, TERRACES, TRANSPARENCY
The Burnside Bridge's east end has become a kind of architectural laboratory over the past four years, with a succession of tall, eye-catching buildings.
That started with the 21-story Yard and the 10-story Slate in 2016, each fusing dark metal and glass in a sleek contemporary language you might call Darth Vader chic. Then came 2017's Fair-Haired Dumbell, not nearly as tall yet standing out even more thanks to a colorful mural-like artist-painted facade.
5 MLK is not officially part of the city-developed Burnside Bridgehead like the other three. However, standing directly across Burnside at 17 stories, the building joins them to bookend the bridge with height. Yet 5 MLK is different in another way. Height notwithstanding, its design seems less about calling attention to itself and more about the experience inside.