Portland 2016 Countdown Clock To Be Unveiled

What’s 19 feet tall, weighs 3,945 pounds, keeps accurate time down to the second and will soon be unveiled at Pioneer Courthouse Square in downtown Portland as the promotional centerpiece for a world-class sporting event?


Allow us to introduce the Portland 2016 Countdown Clock.


Locally designed and built, this iconic clock features multiple digital display modes that speak to the city’s energy, innovation and technology. It will be officially unwrapped during the Portland 2016 Countdown Celebration at Pioneer Courthouse Square on Wednesday, May 27 from 3-7 p.m.


On that day, the clock will begin to count down the days, hours, minutes, and yes, even seconds, until the starter’s gun is raised for the opening event of the 2016 IAAF World Indoor Track & Field Championships, March 17-20. For the record, that’s 295 days away.


“The countdown clock in Pioneer Courthouse Square will build excitement for our Portland event the same way the Olympic countdown clocks have – installed in London’s Trafalgar Square in 2012, and across nine of Russia’s major cities in 2014,” Portland Mayor Charlie Hales said. “It’s a reminder that we are hosting a world event. A number of local firms have worked together to produce a beautiful clock that, like the Olympic countdown clocks, will serve as a legacy of the 2016 IAAF World Indoor Championships. We hope everyone will come down to Pioneer Courthouse Square and help us celebrate the countdown to this historic event.”


When the idea for the clock was first set in motion, 34 firms within the greater Portland area were contacted and presented with the opportunity to design and fabricate the Portland 2016 Countdown Clock. Fourteen of those companies expressed interest, six submitted detailed proposals, three were chosen for interviews and the final bid was awarded to Downstream, a global creative agency based in Portland. Three other local businesses were involved in this ambitious project – Ramsay Signs of Clackamas, Miller Consulting Engineers of Portland and Infinity Images of Portland.


The clock, with accents of wood, aluminum and steel, was designed to fit around an existing brick bench at Pioneer Courthouse Square. Besides a digital countdown to the championships, it will be programmed to provide meet information, competition schedules, race results, medal counts and more. 


The public unveiling of the Countdown Clock is one of the many highlights of the Portland 2016 Countdown Celebration. There also will be live music, food, beverages, youth activities and photo opportunities; appearances by Olympic medalists, world record-holders and local dignitaries; plus a chance to purchase all-session tickets one day in advance of the public ticket launch on May 28.


So, don’t delay. Mark your calendar to be at Pioneer Courthouse Square in Portland on Wednesday, May 27 from 3-7 p.m. to witness the unveiling of the Portland 2016 Countdown Clock, to buy your tickets for this historic event and take part in a celebration of the sport of track and field.