2012 AIA Austin Design Awards
AIA Austin’s 2012 Design Awards competition resulted in recognition for 15 projects in three categories out of a total of 112 entries.
AIA Austin’s 2012 Design Awards competition resulted in recognition for 15 projects in three categories out of a total of 112 entries.
There is good architecture. And then there is good architecture … as in architecture for the public good. This year’s statewide design award winners — 13 projects from Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, and Austin — are a case in point. I was struck, during the awards jury process, by how intent the jurors were on recognizing certain entries, not only for their merit in terms of design (even design merit as broadly defined), but also for their capacity to fulfill client aspirations for the public good.
Our 2012 Design Awards jury met at the Texas Architects headquarters in Austin on June 7 and 8 to review the 227 entries submitted in this year’s program. As Chair of the 2012-2013 Design Committee, I enjoyed the privilege of being present during the deliberations of three distinguished and insightful jurors: Angie Brooks, AIA, of Brooks + Scarpa in LA; Eddie Jones, AIA, of Jones Studio in Phoenix; and James Timberlake, FAIA, of Kieran Timberlake in Philadelphia.
The pavilions at Brownwood Park in north Dallas seem deceptively simple. The three structures — conceived by architect Joe McCall, FAIA, as “The Huddle” —appear at first to be a lighthearted concoction of shapes, colors, and textures. Get closer, though, and a clear idea supported by design rigor becomes evident.
Cotillion Park is located in northeast Dallas, just south of Highway I-635, and is surrounded by single-family homes in a stable middleclass neighborhood. A baseball field and tennis courts occupy the majority of the park, but there is also a small playground and, adjacent to it, a new pavilion – Cotillion Park Pavilion.
As the dynamic second phase of an ambitious masterplan, the chapel resembles clumps of milk-white Jello that have been jiggled and huddled together on a bed of lettuce. A derivative of several previous projects, the IPC has three hierarchal components that lean into each other to form a step stool ascending from the vestibule to the chapel and its 40-ft-tall apse.
Finding the “Beautiful Truth” has long been the focus of TM Advertising in Dallas. It is a central notion that aims to capture the spirit and passion of their clients in a way that translates to the consumer audience. The firm of nearly 50 has been able to do so through a body of personnel that each bring their own sort of passion to the field but seamlessly come together to create a body of work that is immensely expressive and powerful. Recognizing the need for a space to define the future of the company, TM ultimately landed in one of the flanking arms of the Victory Park Plaza adjacent to the American Airlines Center
McGarrah Jessee’s relocation to larger quarters in downtown Austin neatly coincided with the home-grown creative agency’s bursting out of its regional sphere of influence. Affectionately known as McJ, the company has steadily ratcheted up its staffing level as its roster of clients has expanded and its recognition has gone national. Now, after having outgrown its former offices in a converted warehouse, McJ has re-established its base of operations in the Starr Building, a modernist landmark completed in 1954 and designed by local firm Kuehne, Brooks and Barr for the offices of American National Bank. The project achieved widespread acclaim at the time for its distinctively crisp interiors by Florence Knoll and a monumental mural created in situ by Seymour Fogel.
Downtown Austin’s east-west streets are sliced in half by the northsouth artery of IH-35. To the west, downtown rises, its sparkling towers radiating progress. To the east, the city of days past lingers, its
neighborhoods of humble homes and local businesses resolute. The freeway, elevated at the heart of the city, creates a physical and spiritual divide that has plagued Austin for decades.
As urban infill lots go, the roughly 12,000-sf triangular site that is now home to the Kimber Modern Bed & Breakfast presented Baldridge Architects with more than its fair share of challenges. For one, the rather
small plot rose 25 feet in elevation from the curb to the back lot line, a precipitous pitch. Furthermore, neighboring establishments created conditions that most would find undesirable for a boutique design hotel.
In the past there has been a sense of aloofness characterizing the Art Building on the UT Austin campus. Located on the northeast corner of San Jacinto and 23rd Street, across from Royal–Memorial Stadium, the two-story building has stood at a distance from the public. Although its main entry on the west side was connected to street level by a prominent exterior stair, the building’s solid volumes revealed little about its interior activities. Yet the south elevation of this mid-century modern building expressed a slight undulation in the soft orange brick veneer, rising to a cap of contrasting white concrete barrel vaults. These details created a bit of visual interest and a hint of greater possibilities within.
Hope. Simply stated, it is the message of a new facility, on a mission to ultimately end hunger. Nestled in a warehouse district outside of downtown, the Houston Food Bank (HFB) building gleams with its spirited green color and metal cladding. The new 308,000-sf facility is the nation’s largest Feeding America food bank and source of food for hunger relief charities in 18 southeast Texas counties. Beyond feeding the hungry, the Houston Food Bank provides community services and education programs aimed at promoting good nutrition, assistance with federal and state Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs, job training, and employment help — all in an effort to break the cycle of food insecurity.
At the intersection of Rice University’s historic and growth axes is the BioScience Research Collaborative, a ten-story 477,000-sf translational research facility designed to facilitate multi-institutional research collaboration between Rice and various institutes from Texas Medical Center. This interdisciplinary facility embraces a wide range of disciplines, from chemistry to bioengineering, from organizations supporting startup research companies to the National Space Biomedical Research Institute — all with emphasis on improving human wellness through research.
In 2008 the YMCA of Greater Houston announced the imminent replacement of Kenneth Franzheim’s Italian Renaissance-inspired ten-story edifice that had provided classrooms, exercise facilities, and 132 single-room residential units since 1941. Aspiring to move in a more “family-friendly” direction, the organization stated the primary goal of the new 115,000-sf facility would be to assume a stronger community presence in downtown Houston.
Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio has served the medical needs of men and women in uniform since the 1870s. During that time, the complex grew incrementally until 1995 when a new facility was built to consolidate the Fort’s hospital operations. Containing over a million square feet of space, the massive Brooke Army Medical Center (BAMC – pronounced “Bam-See”) was clad in heavy masonry that gave it a somewhat institutional quality. While BAMC was functional, the needs of contemporary combat medical practice are constantly evolving and when the decision was made to absorb most of the operations of a nearby Air Force medical facility into the complex, a significant expansion became necessary to create what would eventually be known as the San Antonio Military Medical Center.
Haven for Hope Homeless Transformational Center is a groundbreaking project aimed at ameliorating homelessness in San Antonio. It emerged from the shared vision of two philanthropists: business leader Bill Greehey, and Phil Hardberger, Mayor of San Antonio from 2005-2009. Since its first-phase completion in 2008, Haven for Hope’s operational model has inspired other American cities to reassess their approaches to addressing homelessness.
Preservation Texas recently announced its 2012 Honor Awards, which includes 10 awards and a special commendation recognizing the best of preservation in Texas. Individuals and projects in Austin, Dallas, Galveston, Houston, Marshall, San Antonio, and West Texas received awards.
A new entrance to the University of Dallas campus, designed by Page Southerland Page, has received a 2012 Metal Architecture Design Award for “Interiors.” The Visitor Center and University Bookstore was one of 10 projects recognized in various award categories. The awards highlight creativity in the metal construction industry and the use of steel in innovative design.
Temple Emanu-El in Dallas, one of the most distinguished works of contemporary architecture in Texas built during the 1950s, has been recognized by a jury to receive the Texas Society of Architects 25-Year Award for 2012.
During its 73rd Annual Convention in Austin, Texas Society of Architects recognized the following as this year’s Honor Awards recipients for significant contributions to the architectural profession and the quality of the built environment.
The Texas Society of Architects recently named Austin hotelier Liz Lambert as the recipient of its 2012 Cornerstone Award.
This fantastical concept emerged from the premise that government transforms the way we occupy and inhabit space. It was honored at the 2012 Texas Architects Studio Awards program, which annually recognizes excellence in unbuilt architectural design.
Conceived as a primary fire and rescue support for Galveston Island, this Fire and Rescue Station was honored at the 2012 Texas Architects Studio Awards program, which annually recognizes excellence in unbuilt architectural design.
I.o.W.H. proposes a quick, low-cost, sustainable, multifamily housing option for a better quality of living for oil-field workers in Encinal, Texas. This project was honored at the 2012 Texas Architects Studio Awards program, which annually recognizes excellence in unbuilt, often strictly conceptual, architectural design.
This bold idea for elevating the bicycle culture of Houston was one of five winners from the 2012 Texas Architects Studio Awards program, which annually recognizes excellence in unbuilt, often strictly conceptual, architectural design.
World Ward II began in the city of Gdansk, Poland on September 1, 1939, this concept for the museum commemorates the event. The proposal was one of the five winners of the 2012 Texas Architects Studio Awards program, which annually recognizes excellence in unbuilt, often strictly conceptual, architectural design.
After jurors evaluated 48 entries from 17 local architectural firms, the AIA’s San Antonio chapter announced the recipients of its 2010 Design Awards during a dinner and ceremony at the Pearl Stable on Oct. 27.
Four projects were recognized for excellence in design at the AIA Fort Worth’s 2010 Design Award Program held Oct. 5 at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth.
This year’s AIA El Paso Design Awards program was juried by eight steemed architectural educators from Universidad Autonoma de Ciudad Juarez, located just across the international border. The jury met for two days and reviewed a total of 34 entries, ultimately recognizing five projects with awards for design excellence in four categories.
As a juror for the 2010 Exhibit of School Architecture sponsored by the Texas Association of School Administrators and the Texas Association of School Boards (with support from the Texas Society of Architects), I spent the better part of a week in July studying the latest work of some of my fellow Texas architects. The experience renewed my appreciation of the range of educational design being built across our state and the lasting impact that educators, administrators, policymakers, and, of course, architects can have in shaping the spaces and places where we educate our children.
About a year ago, when the staff of Texas Architect decided that this edition would focus on workplace design, no one could have foreseen the coincidence that the Texas Society of Architects/AIA itself would be relocating offices as the issue went to press. In another remarkable concurrence, the move takes TSA to the former home of fd2s, which was featured on the cover of the July/August 2002 edition. That issue was also dedicated to the subject of workplace design.
For their deep involvement in community-based organizations promoting architecture, art, and education, the AIA this year confers honorary membership on Howard and Cindy Rachofsky of Dallas.
Lawrence Speck, FAIA, professor and former dean at the University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture and a principal of Page Southerland Page, has been awarded the American Institute of Architects’ 2011 Topaz Medallion for Excellence in Architecture Education.
Among the recipients of 2011 AIA Institute Honors are two projects with Texas connections and the Dallas Architecture Forum.
The results of the 2010 Ken Roberts Memorial Delineation Competition were announced in November at the Dallas Museum of Art. Commonly known as “KRob,” the contest was established 36 years earlier by AIA Dallas to recognize excellence in the art of architectural delineation (originally hand-rendered works but later expanded to include computer-assisted drawings).
Each year the Texas Historical Commission recognizes individuals, organizations, and programs that have achieved success in efforts to preserve the state’s architectural heritage. Included in the 2011 THC program are awards for The Shape of Texas radio program and the Austin architecture firm Clayton & Little Architects.
A diverse jury with a broad spectrum of interests and experience met at the Architecture Center Houston on Feb. 25 to evaluate a wide variety of submittals in this year’s AIA Houston Design Awards competition. Eligibility was limited to projects completed within the last five years and located in the Houston metropolitan area or designed by an architect working in the Houston metropolitan area.
The American Institute of Architects’ Committee on the Environment has included Lake/Flato Architect’s Livestrong Foundation’s headquarters among its 2011 Top Ten Green Projects, a national program that celebrates sustainable design excellence. Livestrong, located in Austin, was this year’s sole Texas honoree.
The American Institute of Architects and the American Library Association (ALA) recently bestowed the ALA Library Building Award to the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) in Thuwal, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Haven for Hope, a San Antonio homeless assistance center designed by Overland Partners, was recognized with two AIA Honor Awards during the AIA national convention in New Orleans. The project, completed last year, was the only one in Texas to receive either an AIA Housing Award or an AIA/HUD Secretary’s Award.
AIA Austin honored 10 projects in its 2011 Design Awards Celebration. From a total of 77 submittals, the distinguished jury of architects selected three for Honor Awards, six for Citations of Honor, and one unbuilt project for a Studio Award.
Lake/Flato Architects is well known for exemplary design. Every year the firm’s commitment to producing the highest quality work is rewarded by design juries. In this edition you’ll find features on five Lake/Flato projects selected for 2011 Design Awards out of a total of 12 winners in the Texas Society of Architects annual competition.
Since its completion in 1986, Fountain Place in downtown Dallas has been praised for both the geometrical precision of its 60-story tower clad in green glass and the extraordinary six-acre urban space that unfurls at its base.
On May 20, the 2011 design awards jury met to review the 257 entries submitted in this year’s program. The distinguished jury consisted of three exceptional professionals with diverse practice and professional experiences, along with a considerable love of architecture and design.
In adapting a century-old machine shop for use as commercial offices, Lake/Flato Architects has preserved the essence of the building’s brawny, tradesman-like character. Yes, the interior has been reconfigured as elegantly austere workspaces, but everywhere are relics of its industrial past.
While it is not unusual for a renovation project to transform an individual building, it is noteworthy when such a project begins to change how people relate to the city around them.
When building in the desert, landscape and climate dominate the discussion. This is the case for Lake/Flato Architects’ Arizona State University Polytechnic Campus where weathered steel screens, trellises covered with climbing vines, and a progression of courtyards create visual and experiential layers that respond to and reflect the colors and textures of its unique environment.
Kieran Timberlake has synthesized difficult technical requirements, environmental responsibility, and architectural craft in the new 110,000-sf Brockman Hall for Physics on the Rice University campus.
The Phoenix area is rich in the tradition of masterful architects weaving eloquent designs into the powerful desert landscape. Wright, Soleri, and others have produced spirited designs, engaging their buildings in a dialogue with their austere settings.
Projecting into the southern end of Flathead Lake in northwestern Montana is a small peninsula of scattered ponderosa pines, towering over a terrain of steep cliff, ridges, and ravines, sloping down to the water’s edge.
Cutting Horse Ranch, located on 175 acres in rural Parker county near Fort Worth, is dedicated to the breeding and training of competition cutting horses.
A visit to the Pearl development just North of downtown San Antonio underscores the promise of thoughtful, incremental urban placemaking. The 22-acre site was the home of Pearl Brewery until beer production ceased in 2001.
A game-changer in more ways than one, Rainwater Court inspires hope and creates new opportunities for more than 600 children and other residents of Mahiga, a rural Kenyan community.
Bridges are a cherished design problem. The clear span represents a common exercise for architecture students exploring essential concepts of structure, tension, and compression. Regrettably, architects are seldom commissioned to design a bridge project.
The term Max Levy, FAIA, uses to describe the weekend house he designed for Singing Bell Ranch is “ranch pragmatism.” The clients asked for a design that was functional and simple, which Levy provided in the form of an elongated rectangle oriented on an east-west axis to catch the prevailing breezes.“
Located on a semi-urban 7.5-acre lot more than a few miles West of Austin, Sisters’ Retreat encompasses a shared pool house and play area for the families of two siblings, set amongst their small compound of homes. The site, surrounded by tall grass and within walking distance of Lake Austin, is reached by a short meander from the residences.
The Texas Society of Architects announces its 2011 Honor Award recipients. The annual awards recognize significant contributions to the architectural profession and the quality of the built environment. Honor Awards were presented in October during the Texas Society of Architects’ 72nd Annual Convention.
Described as a “legend” by his peers, Tommy N. Cowan, FAIA, is a dedicated and lifelong leader. His interest in design and architecture began in the fifth grade when a teacher invited him to compete in Austin’s Wellesley Junior Art Show. Two of Cowan’s architectural drawings were submitted and both won top honors.
In spite of being based in out-of-the-way Corpus Christi, Richter Architects has consistently produced award-winning work over three decades while also striving for the betterment of the profession through influential participation in the American Institute of Architects. For its exemplary contributions at all levels of the AIA and within its local community, the Texas Society of Architects has recognized Richter Architects with its 2011 Firm Award.
A total of 13 projects were recently recognized with Design Awards by AIA Dallas. The chapter’s annual awards program celebrates the work of local architects, as well as the efforts of clients and consultants toward achieving design excellence. Three levels of awards – Honor, Merit, and Citation – were presented by two separate juries, one for built projects and a separate panel for unbuilt work, during different events.
Five projects were recognized in July with AIA Brazos Design Awards from a total of 16 entries. Jurors were Michael Malone, AIA, of Michael Malone Architects in Dallas; Emily Little, FAIA, of Clayton & Little Architects in Austin; and Mark T. Wellen, AIA, of Rhotenberry Wellen Architects in Midland.
This year’s jury met on June 29 in the studio of Marlon Blackwell Architect in Fayetteville, Ark., to assay 50 entries in the Texas Society of Architects’ Studio Awards program.
This edition covers a broad sweep of variations on the “Design for Education” theme, from new facilities for private and public schools to an award-winning architecture course at UT Arlington that is now improving the everyday experiences of Arlington residents. There’s also a news article about a green roof on the campus of UT El Paso, an unlikely – but so far successful – attempt at sustainable design in a desert climate.
On Oct. 30, AIA El Paso recognized seven projects at its 2009 Design Award Banquet held at the historic Camino Real Hotel in downtown El Paso. Four projects received a Design Award and two projects received an Honorable Mention.
During its annual award banquet on Dec. 12, AIA Lower Rio Grande Valley announced the results of its 2009 Design Awards program. The selections were made by a jury that met in Houston during the TSA convention in October.
AIA San Antonio announced the results of its 2009 Design Awards at a ceremony at Pearl Stable on Nov. 4. Eight projects from 49 entries were selected for Design Awards in three categories: Honor, Merit, and Citation. The Mayor’s Choice Award and the 25-Year Award were also announced at the event.
On Oct. 6, the jury for AIA Fort Worth’s 2009 Design Awards program convened at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. They viewed 40 projects submitted by local architects before deciding on the nine they selected for distinction.
One year after her course, The Everyday City, was recognized with an AIA Education Honor Award, University of Texas at Arlington Assistant Professor Wanda Dye has tasked her architecture students with improving the everyday life of all Arlington residents. Through collaboration with City of Arlington staff, their work is a natural extension of the investigations they undertook for The Everyday City. In that class, Dye asked them to re-imagine the most mundane and banal aspects of the suburban environment.
Fourteen Texans are among the 134 architects elevated by the AIA to its prestigious College of Fellows, an honor awarded to members who have made contributions of national significance to the profession.
For 60 years, the members of TSA have financially supported Texas Architect through their dues while also contributing in various ways toward making the magazine one of the best AIA component publications. That long-term collective effort is being recognized this year by the AIA with an Institute Honor for Collaborative Achievement bestowed as part of the 2010 AIA Honor Awards program.
One Texas project – the Brochstein Pavilion at Rice University by Thomas Phifer and Partners – is among 14 projects recognized with 2010 Institute Honor Awards for Architecture.
Brian Malarkey, AIA, of Kirksey in Houston is among nine honorees in this year’s list of AIA “Young Architects.” The Young Architects Award is given to individuals who have shown exceptional leadership and made significant contributions to the profession in an early stage of their architectural career.
The Corpus Christi chapter of the AIA announced its 2009 Design Award winners on Dec. 15. Nineteen entries were received with work completed between 2005 and 2009, and the submittals were judged by a distinguished jury of architectural peers from outside the area. Richter Architects was awarded all three honors.
Cynthia Woods Mitchell – like Ima Hogg, Dominique de Menil, and Jane Blaffer Owen – was an influential and discerning woman who changed the cultural and architectural landscape of the Houston area. Also like the others, Cynthia Mitchell had an eye for aesthetic perfection and a passion for beauty.
A team of students from the University of Texas at San Antonio has been recognized with the 2009 Kenneth Lanier Anderson Prize by the Texas Architectural Foundation (TAF) for measured drawings of the Spanish Governor’s Palace in San Antonio. The prize was presented in November in conjunction with the annual Charles E. Peterson Prize organized jointly by the National Park Service, the Athenaeum of Philadelphia, and the American Institute of Architects to highlight student work for the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS).
Thirteen projects were selected for 2010 AIA Houston Design Awards. The jury – Brian Johnsen of Johnsen Schmaling Architects in Milwaukee, Wis.; Juan Miró, AIA, of Miró Rivera Architects in Austin; and Amanda Kolson Hurley, executive editor of Washington, D.C.-based Architect magazine – met Feb. 26 at the Architecture Center Houston to review 132 entries from 59 local firms. Awards were presented March 25 at the Rice Hotel in Houston.
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has awarded honorary membership to Gail Thomas, Ph.D., president and CEO of the Trinity Trust Foundation. Honorary membership is one of the highest honors the AIA can bestow on any person outside the profession of architecture. Thomas, a Dallas resident, was recognized for her efforts to improve cities and for her support of the arts and architecture.
With the deadline having passed on April 23 for the 2010 TSA Design Awards, three jurors have been selected to review this year’s entries on May 21 at the TSA offices. The jurors are Adèle Naudé Santos, FAIA, dean of MIT’s School of Architecture and Planning and a principal of Santos Prescott and Associates in San Francisco; Tom Phifer, FAIA, of Thomas Phifer and Partners in New York; and Edward Bosley, director of the Gamble House in Pasadena, Calif., and an art historian on the faculty of the USC’s School of Architecture. They were chosen by the TSA Design Awards Committee, chaired by Michael Malone, AIA.
Congo Street Green Initiative in Dallas by Building Community Workshop recently received a 2010 American Institute of Architects/U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary’s Award in the category of community-informed design.
Fifteen projects were selected for the 2010 AIA Austin Design Awards in April. The jury was comprised of Merrill Elam, AIA, of Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects in Atlanta, Ga.; Marlon Blackwell, FAIA, of Marlon Blackwell Architect in Fayetteville, Ark.; and Michael Imber, FAIA, of Michael G. Imber Architects in San Antonio. The three jurors reviewed over 100 submittals at the AIA Austin Center for Architecture.
This year’s TSA Studio Awards will be judged by three Arizona architects, each respected for design work and commitment to sustainable architecture. Comprising the jury is Wendell Burnette, FAIA, of Wendell Burnette Architects in Phoenix; John Kane, FAIA, a founding principal of Architekton in Tempe: and Philip Weddle, AIA, of Weddle Gilmore Black Rock Studio in Scottsdale.
Casa Verde, a conceptual project by Houston’s Morris Architects, was one of three projects awarded an Honorable Mention in the 2009 Dallas Urban Re:Vision international design competition that challenged participants to transform a 2.5-acre downtown parking lot into an entirely self-sustaining mixed-use, mixed-income development.
The annual TSA Design Awards program provides an intriguing snapshot of the state of architectural design in Texas. While nowhere near comprehensive in depicting a multifaceted profession, each year’s collection of winners nonetheless offers a survey of contemporary trends and the occasional flash of creative brilliance. Beyond its beauty-contest aspects, the program may also reveal insights into current economic conditions through the level of participation.
During the 1960s, as several cities planned to build high-profile vertical symbols of their ambitions toward global prominence, San Antonio erected the Tower of the Americas as the theme structure for HemisFair ’68.
After seven hours of uninterrupted work on May 21, this year’s TSA Design Awards jury finalized its selections. The jury began with 200 entries, keeping 61 from that total in the first round, and finished a second round with 21 before ultimately choosing the 11 projects featured on the following pages.
When Malcolm McLean devised the now-ubiquitous metal shipping container in the 1950s, his idea transformed the cargo transport business. The movement of goods on a global scale was greatly facilitated by what became known as inter-modal steel building units.
In a famous Letter to the Editor in Architectural Record, architect Andres Duany labeled the four types of architectural consumers—patrons, clients, customers, and martyrs. Although he was writing in reference to housing, let’s (with apologies to Mr. Duany) apply the same categories to municipal architecture.
Entering the Lance Armstrong Foundation (Livestrong) headquarters is an exercise in transition—from busy streetscape through serene garden to an open, sunlit interior. Transition also characterizes the conversion of the 1950s-era warehouse into the Livestrong offices, considering that a wide variety of the project’s materials were salvaged from the original structure.
Upon hi s death in 1861, a French merchant from Reynosa named Rene Guyard, bequeathed a tract of land along the Rio Grande near present-day Mission to two Catholic priests “for the propagation of the faith among the barbarians.” Thus began the 150-year history of La Lomita Chapel as a rendezvous point for Oblate missionaries in their travels through the wild borderlands.
A view of the limitless horizon can have a transforming effect. Watching the landscape stretch out across miles can cast a spell over even the most world-weary, especially from a high point where one is transfixed by the subtly shifting light over a wide space, cloud shadows cast across the land, a wild storm approaching from afar.
Integrating architecture into any given context while maintaining design integrity is a fine art. Architects must constantly walk the line between over- or under-contextualizing a building to support its strength as a unique entity within its environment. Somewhere between total disregard to surroundings and cliché facsimiles of geologic or biologic imagery, a good architect can find a project’s meaning without being overt. Such sought-after balance has been gracefully achieved by Overland Partners with the firm’s new Overlook Pavilion at Penn State University.
Upon seeing the renovated Pearl Stable one can fully appreciate how past generations respected even the most prosaic of structures. The stable building was originally constructed in 1894 to house the horses that pulled the beer wagons of the Pearl Brewing Company. The elegance of the original two-story, elliptical structure derives from the simplicity of its plan – with horse stalls arranged on the ground floor around its perimeter and its core – and the richness of the corbelled and patterned brick on the exterior. The second floor served as the hay loft from which feed could be dropped through the chutes to the horses below. At the center of the roof was a handsome cupola that provided ventilation to the stables.
Fort Worth Country Day ha s the cache t of bei ng one of the premier college preparatory programs in North Texas. In existence since 1963, Fort Worth Country Day offers K-12 instruction on its campus in southwest Fort Worth. Students become accustomed to the feel of a college campus as they change classes and circulate among separate academic buildings throughout the school day. Covered walkways, an abundance of trees, and landscaping with mature plantings are evidence that the school’s leadership sees the importance of an appropriate setting in creating an environment for learning.
“Beauty alone doesn’t hold your interest for very long. You want things to be a little… scary. But the kind of awe that derives from nature is extraordinarily tranquil.” So muses Arthur Andersson, AIA, in the recently published Natural Houses that features several projects designed by Andersson-Wise Architects, the Austin firm led by him and Chris Wise, AIA. Prominently showcased in the book is Stone Creek Camp, a backwoods hideaway built on a ridge overlooking Flathead Lake in rural northwestern Montana. The elegantly rusticated encampment comprises eight small buildings strategically arrayed across the steeply sloping site, each positioned to foster an individual and collective sense of refuge.
Rising above congested freeways, oversized houses, and drab strip malls, a new architectural landmark has been added to Houston’s horizon. A product of the General Service Administration’s Design Excellence Program, the austere and impressive governmental GSA Regional Field Office emerges from the nondescript suburban landscape with its simple form and emerald skin.
According to Kevin Alter, the 4,200-sf, three -story East Windsor Residence is essentially a one-bedroom loft because the top floor “has all the pleasures and attributes of a penthouse and then it expands down to give you all this other stuff.” The project was designed by Alter, along with alterstudio architects co-principal Ernesto Cragnolino, AIA, with a focus on the third level, which boasts 270-degree views and contains the master suite, kitchen, and main living area. But the “other stuff” found on the remaining two levels completes this finely crafted house in dynamic and dramatic ways.
During its 71st annual convention in San Antonio, Oct. 14-16, the Texas Society of Architects recognized the following as this year’s Honor Award recipients for significant contributions to the architectural profession and the quality of the built environment.
In recognition of its distinguished architecture and significant contributions to the architectural profession and the community, Overland Partners Architects of San Antonio was presented with the 2010 TSA Architecture Firm Award on Oct. 15 during the Texas Society of Architects/AIA convention.
A project by architecture students at the University of Texas at San Antonio to document the Heermann Store, a single-story commercial building erected in 1892 in rural southwest Bexar County, has been recognized with a 2010 Charles E. Peterson Prize.
Two juries – one judging the built projects and another the unbuilt – for AIA Dallas’ 2010 Design Awards program presented 16 awards following deliberations in late September at the Dallas Center for Architecture. A total of 117 submittals, 74 built and 43 unbuilt, were entered by members of the local chapter.