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Real Estate and Construction


Developers, contractors, owners, and investors are a driving force in the region’s economic success. Their transformation of communities and commerce has set new standards. But excellence comes with risk: rising costs, and mandates for sustainability, affordability, and labor, to name a few.

From bare land to a finished project, we help industry players achieve their vision. Schwabe’s decades of experience in Pacific Northwest real estate and construction tames uncertainty and positions clients competitively for opportunities.

Counsel to landmark (and future landmark) projects

Our clients have been involved in some of the most high-profile mixed-use and broad scale residential developments in Oregon and Washington. Their signature projects cover suburban, exurban, industrial, public works, and marine construction properties.

One call, one firm, one answer

In hot markets, there’s no time to waste. Real-time advice delivered by multidisciplinary teams helps clients meet tight deadlines. Our industry focus creates pragmatic solutions that anticipate worst-case scenarios and prevent problems.

A full-service team with attorneys specializing in real estate, land use, construction, tax, employment, financing, litigation, and intellectual property is more than a nice convenience—it protects investments, reduces project friction, and saves time.

In front of industry trends

If it involves land in the Pacific Northwest, chances are we know about it. From guidance on the use of cross-laminated timber or modular steel to financing to public works projects, we immerse ourselves in the commercial realities and future of construction and real estate. Like our clients and neighbors, we are committed to our communities and the people shaping them.

Schwabe’s industry relationships help position clients for success. We lead and participate in influential groups, including:

  • American Planning Association of Oregon (OAPA)
  • Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC)
  • Associated General Contractors, Oregon-Columbia Chapter (AGC)
  • Daily Journal of Commerce (DJC) Builder Breakfasts
  • Downtown Seattle Association (DSA)
  • International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)
  • National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP)
  • National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC)
  • Urban Land Institute (ULI)
  • Acquisitions and dispositions
  • Bid protests
  • Condemnation
  • Condominiums and homeowners associations (HOA)
  • Construction
  • Contract drafting, negotiation, administration, and disputes
  • Corporate formation and governance
  • Dispute resolution
  • Employment and organized labor
  • Environmental compliance
  • Finance
  • Government regulations
  • Housing affordability
  • Joint ventures and M&A
  • Land use (entitlements, permits, and zoning)
  • Leasing
  • Lien recording and resolution
  • Litigation
  • OSHA and safety
  • Payment enforcement
  • Public works
  • Succession and business planning
  • Tax incentives


  • Represent one of the largest banks in the world in its leasing and real estate transactions in the Pacific Northwest.
  • Represent numerous Fortune 500 companies that own and lease Class A office space in the Pacific Northwest.
  • Represented the purchase of a six-building portfolio in downtown Portland. We then assisted in the management and leasing of these buildings, and then handled the resale of the portfolio to two separate institutional purchasers.
  • Obtained a six-figure recovery for a specialty marine construction client after dangerous flood conditions disrupted a major Portland bridge construction project necessitating emergency disaster mitigation and marine salvage procedures.
  • Assist with the acquisition, development, and disposition of multi-family projects ranging in size from 10 to 1,000 units.
  • Assist clients with the acquisition and development of, and investment in, projects eligible for low-income housing tax credits.
  • Representation of various municipalities and governmental agencies in the acquisition and development of industrial properties.
  • Development and leasing work for shopping center developers and retail clients.
  • Successfully defended civil engineers before a jury in a landslide liability case on the Oregon coast.
  • Effectively navigated a procurement protest for an architectural firm regarding a contract with Portland Public Schools.
  • Assisted with lengthy contract negotiations for tenant improvements in a new Pearl District complex on behalf of an architectural firm.
  • Succeeded before the trial court and the Oregon Court of Appeals in the defense of a surveying firm in a real estate title defect case. 
  • Served as lead trial counsel in a successful $375 million fraudulent transfer and ‎equitable subordination ‎action, proving that a global ‎financial institution engaged in predatory lending in the context of the ‎development of the Yellowstone Club.‎

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Chambers USA


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Real Estate
Chambers USA


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17 women attorneys

2 chapters, 2 states, 1 mission.

Schwabe client AGC rallies to reopen construction during COVID.

Lease Crutcher Lewis has deep Pacific Northwest roots. Learn how our region’s culture shaped their business.