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Author: Cici Brown
Title: Beacon of Hope
Category: Zero-carbon & resiliency
Description: On September 8, 2020, towering flames led to a path of destruction, the irony in the devastating Almeda Fire was it served an artistic purpose that no one expected. Beautiful smoke and flame patterns and pre-historic looking pigments adorned the scorched walls and metal flashings at the Malmgren Garage, in Talent, Oregon.The shell of the 1924 concrete structure presented an opportunity for the community before its upcoming restoration; it has housed community events, art shows, and daily visits by artists and citizens wanting to photograph or sketch the burned but artistic structure. The Malmgren Garage lends a feeling of attachment when it’s standing tall or burned and battered. The 98 year old building, despite the damages as a result of the fire, retains sufficient integrity to reflect its historical place. It is the oldest building in Talent and will be placed on the National Register of Historical Places in 2024 when restored. When all funding is gathered, the team of architects, working with the City of Talent will restore the structure with historically appropriate roofing, windows and doors, including the large character-defining garage opening. Until the Malmgren Garage is fully reconstructed, the community and Mayor Darby Ayers-Flood think of it as a “Beacon of Hope,” for the rest of downtown Talent which was 60% destroyed by fire. It will be the first building to come back to life.