A Conversation in Dallas
Roy is showing his new friend, Emily, around the city. They pause beneath a tree on Flora Street. It’s August and the shade offers them a bit of relief from the sun.
Roy is showing his new friend, Emily, around the city. They pause beneath a tree on Flora Street. It’s August and the shade offers them a bit of relief from the sun.
Founders Hall at the University of North Texas at Dallas campus is a multipurpose academic building that addresses current needs for the students, faculty, and staff, while allowing the campus to expand its curriculum and services. Designed by Overland Partners, the first floor of the 108,000-sf building contains public functions such as a library, open reading room, lecture theater, computer lab, large multipurpose spaces, and food service.
Forlorn and neglected, a romantic near-ruin, the former Parkland Hospital sat abandoned and unused for decades at the junction of the Dallas North Tollway and Oak Lawn Avenue. Passersby could glimpse the distinguished older structures (dating back to 1913) nestled under their sentinel oaks, and be curious about what the buildings’ fate might be.
Gateway Park, designed by Perkins+Will’s Dallas office for a site outside Jackson, Miss., is conceived as an emerging type of mixed-use development known as an “airport city.” The 4.45 million-sf project is located in Mississippi directly south of Jackson-Evers International Airport on 200 acres of woodland.
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.
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).
The 5.2-acre park currently under construction over Woodall Rodgers Freeway on the north side of downtown Dallas will feature a performance pavilion and an adjacent restaurant, both designed by Thomas Phifer and Partners of New York, along with other public amenities.
When Dee Mitchell first contacted Ron Wommack, FAIA, about the possibility of designing his new house, Mitchell said he intended to interview five architects and visit with each of them three times before deciding which one would get the commission. Later, when he called to tell Wommack he had the job, Mitchell offered that he so enjoyed visiting with him that he didn’t want the conversation to end.
Richardson, just northeast of Dallas, is representative of the typical American suburban landscape: it is dependent on a nearby metropolis and is connected to it via an expressway; it has decent public schools; it has a generally well educated workforce; it has an adequate supply of mostly single-family residences in attractive, stable neighborhoods. What is missing?
With the help of a local group of Latino architects, the west Dallas neighborhood known as La Bajada has organized to retain its cultural identity and single-family homes. The efforts are in response to plans by the City of Dallas to explore redevelopment scenarios that would transform an area along the Trinity River near the downtown into a high-density urban village. The area currently includes several small neighborhoods, one being La Bajada.
The $1.27 billion Parkland Health and Hospital System in Dallas is currently under construction to replace the existing 54-year-old Parkland Memorial Hospital. HDR Architecture partnering with Corgan Associates, both based in Dallas, was selected as the design team for the new 17-story, 862-bed hospital and master-planned campus, which includes expansion zones for future additions.
Wanting to update the look of its offices but remain in the same high-rise building in downtown Dallas, Energy Future Holdings hired lauckgroup to fulfill the vision of the utility company’s new leadership. The renovation project involved reshuffling operations on the seven floors of the existing 143,000-sf office space. The client requested an energy-efficient space that also reflected a “casual elegance.”
After the war, following his service with the U.S. Naval Engineers, Hal Box returned to Texas to restart his architecture career. Having shared an apartment while studying architect at the University of Texas, we were reunited in the early 1950s when we worked together for Don Nelson in Dallas.
Construction began in February on Belo Garden, one of several urban oases planned as part of the City of Dallas’ 2005 Downtown Parks Master Plan. Hargreaves Associates, the landscape design firm that developed the master plan with Carter & Burgess, designed the 1.8-acre Belo Garden that replaces a parking lot on the west side of downtown.
The City of Dallas’ new Fire Station No. 33, designed by Brown Reynolds Watford Architects, replaces a previously existing facility on the same site in an established urban neighborhood. The four-bay station houses 15 firefighters, including a lieutenant, captain, and battalion chief.
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.
There were some unusual sightings in Dallas in mid-July—pedestrians, lots of them, in spite of 101-degree heat. The occasion was the North Texas Sustainable Showcase 2011 that was staged at several venues within an easy walk from each other, giving reason for why many of the nearly 300 attendees were strolling along the sidewalks—a welcome site for the newly thriving Uptown neighborhood.
Every year since 1939, the statewide architecture community has gathered for professional development, fellowship, and the opportunity to see the best its host city has to offer. This year’s convention of the Texas Society of Architects builds on that long history.
The latest addition to the evolving Dallas Arts District is under construction on the block between the Nasher Sculpture Center and the Myerson Symphony Center. The 42-story Museum Tower is on track for owners to take occupancy of its 116 units (a total of 370,000 square feet) late next year.
More than 150 companies listed below are partnering with the Texas Society of Architects to produce a tradeshow experience that is valuable, diverse, and fun! Please join us in Hall C at the Dallas Convention Center October 27-28 to help drive the energy and success of this year’s Design Products & Ideas Expo.
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.
Still another few months away from completion, the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge already stands out from the other iconic profiles
that make up the skyline of Dallas. Designed by Spanish architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava, the bridge is the most conspicuous component of the ongoing improvements to the Trinity River.
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.
The results of the 35th Annual Ken Roberts Memorial Delineation Competition were announced on Nov. 19. Commonly known as “KRob,” the events was established by AIA Dallas in 1974 to recognize excellence in the art of architectural delineation (originally hand-rendered works but later expanded to include computer-assisted drawings).
Construction began in November on the Perot Museum of Nature and Science on a 4.7-acre site in the Victory development just north of downtown Dallas. Thom Mayne, FAIA, of Morphosis, designed the $185 million project as a mammoth cube that appears to float over a landscaped plinth.
With the opening of the spectacular AT &T Performing Arts Center still ringing in the air, the City of Dallas dedicated an urban park in November that is equally bold for different reasons. Known as the Main Street Garden, the 1.7-acre park did not emanate from a Pritzker Prize-winning architect, nor does it flaunt any enthusiasms for Pritzker Prize-like experimentation. Designed by Thomas Balsley and Associates of New York City, the park is intended to be a richly active urban space for downtown residents—a “setting for people,” in the words of its landscape architect.
For over 23 years , Oak Hill Academy in Dallas has helped students with learning differences achieve success not commonly seen in ordinary schools. Oak Hill’s unique approach to education integrates multidisciplinary studies with individualized multi-sensory teaching, permitting children to experience lessons in a meaningful way.
The reinvigorated Dallas Arts District provides a timely opportunity to feature performance venues around the state while highlighting the Winspear Opera House and the Wyly Theatre. Both are stunning additions to the downtown cultural enclave that has evolved over three decades through the roller coaster ride of the boom-bust economic cycle.
In the heart of the lively neighborhood called Uptown Dallas, the M-Line of the McKinney Avenue Transit Authority covers a 3.5-mile circuit with a fleet of preserved historic trolley cars. The vintage trolleys are an important link in an urban mass-transit system that connects Uptown Dallas with the downtown to the south, shuttling local residents and visitors to popular restaurants, shops, and night spots. At the upper reaches of Uptown is the live/work/play enclave known as West Village, located at the intersection of McKinney and Lemmon.
In premodern cities, the architecture of the public domain – the temples, cathedrals, monuments and the deliberately shaped spaces around them – conferred status to citizens and communicated authority to the outside world. Central Park and Bryant Park in New York City; Golden Gate Park, Market Street and the Embarcadero in San Francisco; and the venerated Emerald Necklace in Boston are public spaces in more recent cities. In the best examples of all worlds, cities are continuous networks of humanized space.
Rem Koolhaas (Pritzker honoree in 2000) and Joshua Prince-Ramus, enabled by enlightened patrons, designed the Wyly to function like no other traditional theater—vertically, with its main performance space at ground level and almost all support facilities placed at the building’s upper tiers. This daring experiment in the logistics of stagecraft exemplifies Koolhaas’s intellectual approach to re-interpreting an established building type from the ground up.
This refreshing urbanistic quality was introduced to the Dallas Arts District in 1989 by I.M. Pei with his Meyerson Symphony Center, followed in 2003 by Renzo Piano with the Nasher Sculpture Center. More recently, two additions to the Arts District – the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House and the Dee and Charles Wyly Theater – both have gone a step further by making it concrete and tangible.
In the fall of 2007, Watermark Community Church in Dallas completed phase two of a three-phase project that created an 11.5-acre campus master-planned and designed by Omniplan. First came the renovation of an eight-story office building to provide facilities for the church’s growing congregation, including spaces for adult education and children’s classes.
By broadening the theme for this edition to encompass wellness, TA’s staff expanded the range of feature projects beyond medical facilities. That allowed us to include The Bridge, a new homeless assistance center on the southern edge of downtown Dallas that addresses the well being of that community’s neediest residents. The Bridge, recognized for design excellence by the AIA and other national organizations, is a collaborative effort between CamargoCopeland Architects in Dallas and Overland Partners Architects in San Antonio.
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.
Also dotting the landscape are landmarks from a grander but almost forgotten earlier era—including the Masonic Temple (1941; Flint & Broad), the Weisfeld Center (1912; Hubbell & Greene; originally the First Church of Christ, Scientist), and the Scottish Rite Cathedral (1913; Hubbell & Greene). Dallas City Hall, designed in 1977 by I.M. Pei with the mission of awakening Dallas from its post- JFK assassination slump, mediates between this neglected corner of downtown and the inner city’s robust commercial district. There is hope, however, for this neighborhood’s renewal since the opening in 2008 of The Bridge, a homeless assistance center funded by the City of Dallas.
As designed by Good Fulton & Farrell, the new Dallas facility reflects the idea of working out as if it were fashion and lifestyle more than losing weight and staying fit. Despite the people exercising everywhere and the array of equipment, this is much more about creating a retreat than it is about pumping iron.
The 56,700-sf Department of Homeland Security U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS ) building in Dallas replaces two separate USCIS offices. Completed in 2008 and designed by 4240 Architecture of Chicago, the two-story building includes a waiting room, information counters, a processing office, and a ceremony room on the first floor.
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.
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.
Designed by Mell Lawrence Architects of Austin, the Cotillion Pavilion replaces an existing shade structure at Cotillion Park in northeast Dallas. Scheduled for completion later this year, the project is part of the City of Dallas Park and Recreation Department’s long-range strategic plan to restore or replace aging picnic pavilions throughout the city.
Texas St adium collapsed on April 11 in a well-executed implosion detonated at 7:08 a.m. that ended a storied 37-year career as the home of the Dallas Cowboys. In less than 30 seconds and before more than 20,000 witnesses, a spectacular series of blasts from 2,715 lbs. of explosives reduced the 65,675-seat arena to rubble.
Two recent events have raised the national stature of the AIA’s Texas component, the state with the third-largest membership in the American Institute of Architects. In June, during the AIA convention in Miami, delegates elected Jeff Potter, FAIA, of Dallas as the 2011 first vice president/president-elect, which will evolve into the 2012 AIA presidency.
The Collector, a conceptual project by Brendan O’Grady, AIA, of RTKL Associates in Dallas, is a mixed-use development imagined for construction in Shanghai. Planned to encompass more than 2.7 million square feet, the project is “designed to harness the energy of business, culture, and nature.”
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.
Buzz Lofts, a live/work residential building designed by t. howard + associates, is sited on an urban block near downtown Dallas. Sustainable, modern, and artistic describe the design concept for the three-story building that rests above ground-floor parking.
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.
Park Lane is not your typical New Urbanist enclave. There is no tinge of nostalgia to the buildings, no sense of a walk down memory lane, nor the feel of a backdrop to a 1920s movie. Instead, crisp lines, angular building shapes, and modernist glass cubes are gathered along the familiar form of a street. Taken together, it is a project that manifests an interest in distinguishing urban design concepts from building style.