Posts

A Language of Movement

The environment exists for the purpose of movement. —Lawrence Halprin, in Progressive Architecture 46 (July 1965) On a bluff overlooking the Trinity River, just on the north edge of downtown Fort Worth, Lawrence Halprin’s Heritage Park Plaza sits vacant. Closed to the public since 2007 due to structural and safety concerns, Halprin’s urban park and water garden — the only one of the public spaces he designed for Texas that remains intact — is gradually sliding into ruin after years of neglect. (Aside: Halprin also designed the original landscaping of NorthPark Center in Dallas; however, after several expansions of the…

Small is Beautiful

Upon arriving in Marfa from the east on Route 90, turn left at the Dollar General onto Spring Street and left again across Alamito Creek, onto Dallas Street. This will bring you to the Marfa 10 x 10 Lightbox, a minimal dwelling of 320 sf by San Antonio-based architect Candid Rogers, AIA. This outpost is an exercise in restraint: Two 10-by-16-ft volumes, a 5:8 proportion, are stacked and offset by 8 ft, creating a double-height interior space and a cantilevered upper room. (For reference, the units of Donald Judd’s nearby concrete works are 1:2 in proportion, measuring about 8 ft,…

Bit by Bit

To tackle what has become an almost 15-year master plan for the National Butterfly Center in the Lower Rio Grande Valley, Wendy Evans Joseph, FAIA, started off by dividing the 100-acre site into 22-sf parcels. This inclination toward modular design has informed everything about the site. “It’s almost a mini-Jeffersonian plan,” said Joseph, “except instead of six miles it’s 22 ft.” The pixelized landscape, she explained, has enabled the North American Butterfly Association to “conquer the site over time in bite-sized pieces as they raise money.” New York-based Joseph began working with Jeffrey Glassberg, founder of the Association, on the…

El Paso Knothole

Southwest University Park is home to the El Paso Chihuahuas, a Triple-A baseball team affiliated with the San Diego Padres. The newest and, some say, the finest ballpark in the minor leagues, it opened this April after a breakneck 11-month construction phase. In addition to designing a top-notch baseball facility, the park’s architect, the Kansas City-based Populous, as well as the city of El Paso itself, wanted the building to reach out and engage the community, both to draw fans to the game and to spur the revitalization of El Paso’s downtown. This is most notably achieved at the ballpark’s northernmost point,…

2013 Design Expo: Exhibitor Information

DESIGN EXPO SCHEDULE Texas Society of Architects 74th Annual Convention and Design Expo November 7-8, 2013 Fort Worth Convention Center – Exhibit Halls A&B Exhibitor Move-In Wednesday, November 06, 2013, 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm Thursday, November 07, 2013, 8:00 am – 2:30 pm Expo Exhibit Hours Thursday, November 07, 2013, 4:00 pm – 7:30 pm (Exhibit Hall Opens and a Texas-sized Happy Hour)   Friday, November 08, 2013, 11:00 am – 5:30 pm (Lunch in Expo Hall, Continuing Education sessions and Ice Cream Breaks on the show floor) Exhibitor Move-Out Friday, November 08, 2013, 5:45 pm – 10:00 pm   EXHIBITOR OPPORTUNITIES…

Department of State Overseas Buildings Operations Announces Two IDIQ Design Services Solicitations

This is a great opportunity for design firms to work on significant new embassy construction and major renovation/rehabilitation projects. New construction and renovation/rehabilitation work has been separated to better select a short list of firms that excel in each specific area.  Firms that have experience with both new construction and renovations/rehabilitations should pursue both solicitations. Please note that having an existing or previous Department of State contract is not required. Any questions related to the solicitations should be directed to the contracting officer. For more specific information on new construction opportunities click here and to learn about opportunities for rehabilitation…