Texas A&M Students Creating Designs for New Mavericks Facility

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban discusses student work – photo courtesy Texas A&M Bryan Trubey, FAIA, director of HKS’ sports and entertainment division (learn more in the March/April 2016 issue of Texas Architect) and a group of graduate students from the Texas A&M University College of Architecture are working with Mark Cuban to design a new practice facility for his team, the Dallas Mavericks. Cuban hopes to build the facility within the next two years at an as yet undetermined site in Dallas. In the meantime, the students are presenting their ideas, which will not be built, as an exercise in learning to work on high profile projects…

River Barge Design Competition Finalists Announced

Finalist Luna Architecture's proposed redesign of San Antonio's iconic river barge – rendering courtesy AIA San Antonio In honor of San Antonio’s upcoming 300th anniversary in 2018, AIA San Antonio has sponsored an international design competition to re-imagine the River Walk’s iconic river barge (see our earlier post about the competition here). The contest is seeking to discover a barge that is more sustainable, serving commuters as well as tourists. This includes making the fleet of barges entirely electric.  METALAB's proposed barge – rendering courtesy AIA San Antonio On February 22, the City of San Antonio and AIA San Antonio announced the contest’s three…

Everything Old is New Again

Construction progresses under the beamed ceiling at 500 Chicon – photo by Elizabeth Hackler 500 Chicon, with its exposed brick, soaring roof beams, and center atrium, is already beautiful. But the things that we love most about the building are also the things that cause challenges when attempting a renovation. In order to improve its functionality, changes to the HVAC system and acoustics needed to be made. The exposed brick walls lend character, but they lack insulation completely. The open nature of the space allows light to reach deeper into the basement, but it also allows sound to travel without impediment.…

Elizabeth Danze, FAIA, Named Interim Dean at UTSOA

Elizabeth Danze, FAIA – photo courtesy danzeblood.com The University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture (UTSOA) has named Elizabeth Danze, FAIA, interim dean effective July 1. A graduate of UTSOA and the Yale School of Architecture, Danze is a principal at Austin-based Danze Blood Architects and the current associate dean for graduate programs at the UT Austin.  A contributor to numerous publications, Danze is the co-editor of "Architecture and Feminism" and author of "CENTER 9: Regarding the Proper and Psychoanalysis and Architecture-The Annual of Psychoanalysis," Volume 33, and "CENTER 17: Space and Psyche."   Danze was elected an AIA Fellow in 2009 and awarded…

Intersecting Interests

In 1971, the Los Angeles-based artist Robert Irwin embarked on a solitary driving tour of the country’s perimeter. A year earlier, he had completed an installation at the Museum of Modern Art that — while unnoted by the art world — had led to an important personal breakthrough, leading him to leave his studio for good and embark on a new phase of a career in which he has routinely questioned and shed the inessential. The MOMA installation transformed a small, squat room through three site-specific interventions indicated by the title of the work: ”Fractured Light” — “Partial Scrim Ceiling”…

Healthcare International

The winning scheme for a new hospital in Denmark by WHR Architects, in association with KHR Arkitekter and Arup International, reflects a respect for its 100-year-old historical context in Copenhagen while offering Danish health care an infusion of American healthcare design.   Anthony Haas, WHR principal, said the Danish government launched a healthcare campaign years ago to bring high quality care to their citizens. They sought international best practices for new methods to deliver health care and wanted to apply those lessons for a blended solution. The capital region of Denmark’s vision to provide world-class health care included a 2020…

For Humanity

What better product of Architecture than a smile on the face of a child?  Following the earthquake that added insult to the injury already consuming the people of Haiti, there came a call from Architecture for Humanity for architects to help. As third responders, our efforts would focus on stabilization first and only later on reconstruction. In my 12 or so trips to Haiti over four and a half years, I watched this process and how our architectural training and use of design added value to the recovery and to the lives of the Haitian people. Answering that call was…

Campsite Rules

For several years now, real estate developers out for a quick buck have been buying up single-family and duplex homes in central Austin, demolishing them, and erecting code-compliant structures on the lots that look like big houses from the outside but are in fact apartment buildings housing as many as six un-related adults. Rooms in these cheaply made and unattractive structures go for around $1,000 per month, which, when all is tallied, amounts to a tidy profit for the slumlord. For neighbors, however, these Trojan Horses are real nuisances, creating parking, trash, and noise issues, not to mention corrupting the…

Behind the Scenes

If God is in the details, Kendall/Heaton Associates is a prophet. Since 1978, this discreet Houston firm has been the hidden wizard behind many noteworthy buildings in Texas and beyond — designed by such internationally famous architects as Tadao Ando (Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth), Norman Foster (Winspear Opera House in Dallas), REX Architecture and OMA (Wyly Theatre in Dallas and Milstein Hall at Cornell University), Rafael Moneo (Audrey Jones Beck Building for the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston), Renzo Piano (Kimbell Art Museum expansion in Fort Worth), Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, SANAA (Toledo Museum of Art Glass…

2016 Design Awards Jurors Announced

The Texas Society of Architects is proud to announce the jurors for our 2016 Design Awards competition. We look forward to their presence in Austin on May 5–6, when they convene to decide our winners. As a reminder, Design Award entries can be submitted here and will be accepted until March 31.  The work of Thomas Hacker, FAIA, has largely dealt with public institutions: libraries, schools, museums, theaters, and places of public assembly. To them he has brought both artistic skill and a keen sensitivity to the nature of public use. His buildings have an understated dignity based on the beauty of…