Here’s Dallas’ plan to build tiny homes for the homeless to save lives and money

Architecture, Development, Southwest
Wednesday, September 2, 2015
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(Courtesy bcWORKSHOP)

(Courtesy bcWORKSHOP)

Taking a cue from a program in Houston, Dallas has decided to house 50 homeless people using low-cost cottages designed by bcWORKSHOP, short for Building Community Workshop.

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Master adobe architects are looking for volunteers interested in building with little more than the earth around them

(Courtesy Adobe Alliance)

(Courtesy Adobe Alliance)

Simone Swan is perhaps this country’s most important advocate for adobe or mud brick architecture.  In 1997, Swan left her New York home and moved to “500 acres of scenic fringe of the Chihuahuan desert near Presidio, Texas. There she founded the Adobe Alliance to teach the earth building techniques she had learned from the great Egyptian architect Hassan Fathy.

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Muñoz & Company Quilt with Glass and Masonry

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Multicolored glass curtain walls embody the quilt metaphor at the heart of Muñoz & Company's Billy Dade Middle School. (Courtesy Muñoz & Company)

Multicolored glass curtain walls embody the quilt metaphor at the heart of Muñoz & Company’s Billy Dade Middle School. (Courtesy Muñoz & Company)

Envelope inspired by history of Dallas’ African-American community.

For the past 20 years, San Antonio–based Muñoz & Company (formerly Kell Muñoz Architects) has focused primarily on what president and CEO Henry Muñoz III calls “the architecture of identity.” The bulk of that work, in turn, has been concentrated on the United States–Mexico border, where the architects collaborated with clients in majority-Latino communities. Read More

On View> The Menil Collection presents “Barnett Newman: The Late Collection”

Art, Design, On View, Southwest
Wednesday, June 10, 2015
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(Courtesy Menil Collection)

(Courtesy Menil Collection)

Barnett Newman: The Late Collection
The Menil Collection
1533 Sul Ross Street, Houston, Texas
Through August 2

The Late Collection pays homage to Barnett Newman, an artist who came to define the spiritual aspirations of American painting in the mid-20th century by deviating from traditional concepts of figure and foreground in search of an experience of the sublime. The exhibition charts the technical and material transformations of the twilight period of Newman’s career, including his transition from oil to acrylic paint.

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Kirksey’s Julie Hendricks on closing the gap between designed, actual performance

Kirksey's Memorial Hermann Medical Plaza. (Jilleann77 via Wikipedia)

Kirksey’s Memorial Hermann Medical Plaza. (Jilleann77 via Wikipedia)

As EcoServices team leader for Kirksey Architecture, Julie Hendricks spends her days thinking about how to build sustainably without busting a project’s budget.

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High performance facade design is on the rise in Houston, says Jorge Muñoz

HOK's Sysco headquarters building in Houston. (Hequals2henry / Wikimedia Commons)

HOK’s Sysco headquarters building in Houston. (Whisper To Me / Wikimedia Commons)

As founding principal of Muñoz Albin, Jorge Muñoz has a unique global perspective on high performance facade design. Based in Houston, the firm’s earliest projects were located overseas. “In the last 20 plus years, we have worked and continue to work on projects in Western Europe, where there is a tradition of more generous budgets on building envelopes as well as more flexible user and developer demands on efficiency,” said Muñoz.

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Sanjeev Tankha explains the intracacies of engineering facades for hot, humid Houston

Houston's sunny climate presents a special set of challenges to facade designers and fabricators. (Theodore Scott / Flickr)

Houston’s sunny climate presents a special set of challenges to facade designers and fabricators. (Theodore Scott / Flickr)

Thanks to the city’s humid subtropical climate, facade designers and fabricators face a special set of challenges in Houston. Unchecked, steady sunshine and high temperatures can permeate the building envelope, leading to a heavy reliance on mechanical cooling systems. Meanwhile, Houston’s Gulf Coast location makes it vulnerable to tropical storms.

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Gensler’s Kristopher Stuart on Houston’s Facades Scene

Facades+AM makes its Houston debut June 18. (Katie Haugland / Flickr)

Facades+AM makes its Houston debut June 18. (Katie Haugland / Flickr)

For Kristopher Stuart, design director and principal at Gensler, Houston‘s rapid evolution is exactly what makes practicing architecture there exciting. Read More

Save the Date! Facades+AM heads to Houston this June

Facades+AM is coming to Houston June 18. (Sarath Kutchi / Flickr)

Facades+AM is coming to Houston June 18. (Sarath Kuchi / Flickr)

They say “everything is bigger in Texas.” So it goes for Houston‘s skyline, the fourth largest in the United States. Big, too, are the names behind Space City’s most iconic skyscrapers. The city’s tallest, the 75-story JPMorgan Chasetower, was designed by I.M. Pei in 1981.

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SoftLAB 3D prints a kaleidoscopic pavilion for 3M at SXSW 2015 that showcases colorful dichroic film

(Courtesy SXSW 2015)

(Courtesy SXSW 2015)

A household name in resilient scotch tape and self-adhesive velcro, 3M wowed the crowd at  South by Southwest 2015 (SXSW) with a 3D-printed pavilion awash in kaleidoscopic colors, with every inch of the structure designed to showcase a 3M product at work.

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Notes from the 2015 Texas Society of Architects Design Conference in Denton

(Brantley Hightower)

O’Neil Ford’s Little Chapel. (Mia Frietze)

This year’s Texas Society of Architects Design Conference focused on the topic of craft and was framed by a discussion of noted regional modernist O’Neil Ford. It was held in the north Texas town of Denton where Ford began his professional career and executed several important early projects.

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Eavesdrop> Ski Bummer: Proposed enormous indoor ski slope resort in Texas calls it quits

Eavesdroplet, Southwest
Monday, March 23, 2015
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The Grand Alps Resort. (Courtesy Grand Alps Group)

The Grand Alps Resort. (Courtesy Grand Alps Group)

Grand Prairie, Texas, has been spared what could have been the nation’s first indoor ski resort and Hard Rock Hotel. The project’s developer, The Grand Alps Group, pulled the $215 million proposal after a meeting with Grand Prairie’s mayor and city manager. They were not happy about losing the big fish. “We were a little surprised,” City Manager Tom Hart told the Dallas Morning News. “We thought we had a pretty good meeting.”

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