Texas Architect November/December 2008
Published by the Texas Society of Architects since 1950, the magazine has consistently showcased outstanding architectural design from around the state and chronicled significant events relevant to the profession.
Regulating High-Performance Design
While Texas’ five largest cities have adopted policies mandating sustainable design standards for their new public buildings, the Texas Legislature has yet to pass any similar laws governing state-owned facilities.
Gulf Coast Slowly Recovers After Ike
In early October, residents of the Texas Gulf Coast were still cleaning up debris left behind by Hurricane Ike. When the hurricane slammed into Galveston Island as a Category 2 storm on Sept. 13, homes and businesses along the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast were destroyed, and millions of people were left without power.
Open Window to History
Almost 20 years ago, an infamous building in downtown Dallas reopened as a museum dedicated to the history of events surrounding the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza replicates the time and place where a sniper took aim at half-past noon on Nov. 22, 1963. Through the combined efforts of architects, civic leaders, preservation historians, and many volunteers, the museum allows 325,000 visitors annually to experience the building as it existed when JFK’s motorcade passed by 45 years ago.
t a time when our nation’s financial system seems to be imploding, it’s sometimes distressing to ponder what the future holds for the architectural profession. Our livelihoods are inextricably tied to the fortunes of the building industry, which quickly reacts to any economic downturn and in turn affects our work accordingly. Troubling, too, is the issue of global warming because our profession has an immediate and direct impact on the environment. And considering that buildings in the U.S. consume about 70 percent of the nation’s total electricity output and 12 percent of its water, it is evident that what we do as designers and builders in the future must be increasingly responsive to such grave issues.
Audubon Takes Flight
Architect: BRW Architects in association with Antoine Predock Architect
Just eight miles southeast of downtown Dallas, another world exists far removed from the city’s shimmering high-rises and labyrinthine expressways. This world is known as the Great Trinity Forest, the largest urban bottomland hardwood forest in North America. Its 6,000 acres support a widely diverse community of plants and animals that thrives in this unique ecosystem where three distinct biomes – timberland, wetlands, and prairie – converge.