Lake|Flato Settles Into East Austin Office

Lake|Flato, a fixture of San Antonio for 30 years, has recently opened an Austin outpost. The team, which has been working in the city since March, moved into a new space on the East Side in October. The firm has signed a five-year lease for the space and has plans to grow. At the moment, the office houses seven employees plus David Lake, FAIA, founding partner of the firm. A native of Austin, Lake has been interested for years in opening an outpost in the city in order to take a more active role in facilitating sustainable growth while maintaining its…

McAllen: An Architectural Panorama

Participants in the 24th Annual Building Communities Conference of the Lower Río Grande Valley Chapter of the American Institute of Architects began a two-day conference at South Padre Island with a daylong, preconference tour on September 29 that focused on domestic architecture in the border city of McAllen. Kevin Graham was instrumental in organizing this tour of eight of McAllen’s most outstanding works of residential architecture. These were visited by the more than 60 tour participants. The oldest house on the tour was a compact, two-story Spanish style house on N. 15th Street in McAllen’s Las Palmas Landmark District. Built in 1933,…

Holiday Gift Guide: For the Architect Who Has Everything

Marmol Radziner Mezuzah http://www.marmolradzinerjewelry.com/home-goods/marmol-radziner-mezuzah The Los Angeles-based design-build firm Marmol Radziner has added a mezuzah to its collection of home accessories that includes a handcrafted menorah and dreidel in solid walnut and brass. Made by master craftsmen in the firm’s in-house metal and wood fabrication shop, the mezuzah is available in solid walnut, dark patinated metal, and cast brass. It has a removable brass back and is available with an optional Kosher Ashkenazi “Beis Yosef” parchment scroll. $200 Brillante Pencils www.papress.com New from Princeton Architectural Press, the Brillante pencil set was designed by the legendary graphic designer Louise Fili. This set…

TxA Responds to AIA Post-Election Letter

In the wake of the response by AIA members to AIA CEO Robert Ivy’s post-election statement, the Texas Society of Architects (TxA) would like to reaffirm our core values. Above all, TxA is committed to being the voice for Texas architecture, supporting the creation of safe, beautiful, and sustainable environments. Furthermore, TxA stands behind AIA’s stated Diversity and Inclusion Goals (see below). TxA acknowledges that  much of the presidential campaign rhetoric, prior actions, and statements of the president-elect seem to be in contradiction to our core values and those of the AIA. We anticipate learning more about the intentions of the new administration…

Blast from the Past

Recently, TxA received a postcard from Robert Bumann of Florida. A piece of architectural history, the card depicts a building at The University of Texas at Austin that no longer exists. The Old Main building, originally the first permanent structure on the campus, was completed in 1899, 16 years after classes first began. A Victorian Gothic masterpiece of yellow brick, the building housed several different academic facilities. The first subject to be moved out of the palatial Old Main was chemistry, as the fumes from the labs and dangerous chemicals were a cause for concern. A chemistry building was built…

Architects Talking to Architects: Alan G. Roberts, AIA

Alan G. Roberts, AIA, is the founder of “So You Want to Be an Architect,” a Facebook page dedicated to exploring the realities of a career in architecture. Roberts received his bachelor’s degree in architecture from the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa in 1982. An American citizen since 2002, he has worked on many projects in Northeast Texas, specializing in educational, religious, medical, and commercial work. He is now semi-retired. Where did you grow up? I was born in Africa in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, and, depending upon how old you are, you may remember the name “Rhodesia” as well. My earliest…

Becoming an Architect: MFx Participants Gain Career Experience

MFx participants collaborate. – photo courtesy Matt Fajkus Architecture Last week, the Intern Development Program transitioned into the AXP, the Architectural Experience Program. With the structure of student career development programs changing, we will be highlighting a variety of student experiences, from applying to architecture school to available experience programs for licensure. First up is a look inside MFx, a new summer program for students created by Matt Fajkus Architecture (MF Architecture) "to explore unknown variables in the field of architecture and beyond, with the intention of adding a new dynamic to the Austin creative scene." Hard at work – photo courtesy Matt Fajkus Architecture While…

Convergence: Keynote Speakers

We are excited to introduce the keynote speakers for "Convergence," our 77th Annual Convention and Design Expo. Marion Weiss, FAIA, and Michael Manfredi, FAIA, Eric J. Cesal, Assoc. AIA, and Debbie Millman will be joining us in San Antonio this November. For the first time, this year we will be hosting four general sessions— two on Friday and two on Saturday. Debbie Millman will speak at the first session on Friday, and Weiss/Manfredi will speak at the second. The Saturday program will feature a session by Eric J. Cesal, as well as the convention's final general session, a panel discussion between all four speakers moderated…

The Grit and the Grandeur

Since purchasing the Pearl Brewery in 2002, private equity firm Sliver Ventures has transformed the 23-acre site just north of downtown San Antonio into a mixed-use, urban-scaled neighborhood. Based on a master plan by Lake|Flato, the district has been filled in with an eclectic assortment of buildings — some new constructions, others adaptations of old brewery facilities — designed by a variety of architects and occupied by apartments, offices, shops, and restaurants.  The centerpiece of the bustling development is Hotel Emma, a 146-room luxury hotel named after Emma Koehler, who survived her husband, brewery president Otto Koehler, to run the…

2016 Prosperity Conference

Registration Deadline: August 11 TxA PROSPERITY CONFERENCE The word on the street is that our economy is booming and all is well in our industry. But maybe there are still questions to be asked and ways to improve your business. What is the Texas economy looking like now — what is ahead? Are we changing the way our firms operate to take advantage of the highs and protect the company when the inevitable lows return? What best practices can be shared to strategize our growth? How do we “get what we want” for the firm? For our clients? For our staff?  Explore these questions and more…