Texas Architect November/December 2009

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.

Industrial Strength

by: Stephen Sharpe

Modernists are drawn to pure expressions of function, form that instantly communicates the essence of a building’s use. The Texas landscape is rich in examples, oftentimes overlooked because they are straightforward, generic, inconspicuous—precisely the qualities that make them worth our attention. J. Brantley Hightower, AIA , in a short essay “The Lure of the Industrial” on page 44, opens the feature section with musings on his and his fellow architects’ fascination with buildings “that reflect the most direct solutions to complex problems.”

Courtesy of Pearl Brewery
Page 5

RDA Civic Forum’s Post-Ike Forecast Calls for Improved Coastal Safeguards

by: Thomas M. Colbert, A IA

While Hurricane Ike may have roared through Texas over a year ago, public interest remains high in planning efforts to protect the Houston-Galveston region against such violent storms. In response to that interest, the Rice Design Alliance sponsored a three-part civic forum during the summer.

Page 19

Studio Awards 2009

Since 2004, the Texas Society of Architects has sponsored the TSA Studio Awards to recognize the best in unbuilt work by architectural students and faculty, as well as by architects practicing in the state. Prior to this year, submittals were reviewed by the same jurors who judged the TSA Design Awards.

Page 30

Studio Awards 2009


Architect: Brave /Architecture

Where the historical covered bridge protected the structure from the elements, this reinterpretation permits the elements to pass through the structure. Located in the Texas Hill Country, the Sorensen Bridge is the addition of a structure to an existing bridge spanning 50 feet across Sandy Creek near New Ulm. The creek divides 220 acres of private property that belongs to an entrepreneur whose business is selling tube steel.

Page 30

The Lure of the Industrial

by: J. Brantley Hightower

At least two things bind all architects together: our vacation photos tend to include more buildings than people and at some point we read Le Corbusier’s Towards a New Architecture. While it has since been revealed that the title and other portions of the book were initially translated poorly, the book remains arguably the most influential manifesto of the early modernist period. Although Corbusier’s grand pronouncements are at times both endearingly naïve and annoyingly heavy handed, his general thesis was certainly revolutionary for its day and prophetic given all that came later.

Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Control Tower 19, Santa Fe Railway Milepost 51, Dallas; image courtesy Library of Congress, Prints &
Photographs Division, HAER , Reproduction number HAER TEX, 57-DAL, 5-5; Photos at far right by J. Brantley Hightower, AIA
Page 44

Place-Making in Progress

by: Vincent Canizaro, PhD
Architect: Lake/Flato Architects (design); Durand-Hollis Rupe Architects (architect of record)

A visit to the Pearl Development today is one of promise and potential. Still less than 50 percent complete, it is already contributing to life in San Antonio and has become a destination for an increasing and devoted following. How it has done so is based in a rare instance in which the interests of its developers, the local design community, and the public have coincided. Why this has occurred is due in large part to the unique makeup of the members of the project team, their shared goal to create a “transformational” and “authentic” place, and the cost-effective, socially engaging, and incremental process they have followed.

Casey Dunn, Greg Harrison
Page 46

Bullish on Materials

by: Malcolm Holzman, FAIA

Architecture for me is not about concealment but rather about divulging its very nature to the widest possible audience. Materials are not a mystery; they are an essential building ingredient, our heritage, and part of our everyday lives.

Photos by Tom Kessler
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