Posts tagged with "Dallas":
A star is on the horizon: Situated roughly 30 miles north of Dallas, Frisco Independent School District (ISD), one of the fastest growing school districts in the U.S., is home to more than 54,000 students across 68 schools, with eight more schools planned to open before 2019.
To accommodate this rapid growth, Gensler designed a 25-acre complex comprising a 300,000-square-foot office building, 300-room hotel, and a 12,000-seat indoor stadium known as the Ford Center. Totaling $1.5 billion, the project is known officially as “The Star in Frisco” and is part of the area’s larger 91-acre mixed-use development.
Gensler’s scheme has been hotly anticipated by the local community. The Ford Center’s inaugural event, which saw four football games between teams from Frisco’s ISD on August 27, was sold out a week in advance.
Emblazoned with the Dallas Cowboys’ signature blue—conveniently similar to that of Ford’s—the indoor athletic facility will be used by the NFL team, the City of Frisco, and Frisco ISD’s eight high schools. With a clearance of 94 feet and offering football-shaped locker rooms to be used by both high schoolers and professional football players, it is the only NFL training facility in the country that is shared with the public.
Project architect and Gensler associate Scott Armstrong said that the venue was “always going to be indoors in order to provide flexibility,” and to create a “multi-use event space.” As a result, visitors can expect a vibrant atmosphere at events as sound reverberates around the space. Given the stadium’s parabolic roof, Armstrong also highlighted the extensive gutter system that spans the perimeter to capture water runoff.
Unlike most NFL and high school sports arenas, fans can enter the venue through the same side. “Everybody’s a home team here at this stadium,” principal at Gensler Ted Kollaja told the Dallas News. “We wanted to ceremonially bring them all through the front door together.”
Sitting in the middle of the 25-acre area, the Ford Center will be joined by offices and a “War Room” (a space for football tactics to be discussed) to its right, and an Omni Hotel, retail, and restaurant space to its left. Directly in front of the arena will be a public plaza, complete with a football field (one of three outdoor fields in the complex), which will bridge the surrounding typologies at a pedestrian level.
Present throughout Gensler’s project is the theme of openness. In the office complex, a five-story atrium connects the main lobby and entrance to the football field on the opposite side. Aligned with the 50-yard line, the feature provides what Armstrong described as the “wow factor” for the site while also emphasizing the notion of “walkability” within the general area.
The hotel, known as the “Omni Frisco Hotel” will boast a 13,000-square-foot ballroom, as well as 24,000 square feet of meeting and event space. The luxury hotel will also offer a rooftop pool deck with a bar and grill overlooking the open plaza and main entrance to the Ford Center.
The 25-acre development is due to be complete in fall 2017, though the Ford Center is currently up and running. As for the overall 91-acre scheme, Armstrong said that this “will phase into competition at various times throughout the next few years.”
Of 40 submissions from 14 Dallas firms, the Dallas Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) has selected four designs to receive its 2016 AIA Dallas Unbuilt Design Awards. This year’s recipients were selected by a jury composed of world-renowned architects, including Jacob Brillhart, founder of Brillhart Architecture; Mary-Ann Ray, a principal of Studio Works Architects and cofounder and co-director of the experimental laboratory for urban and rural research and design at BASE Beijing; and Adam Marcus, AIA, director for Variable Projects and partner in Futures North.
Dallas Arboretum Perkins + Will
The Garden Education Center at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens acts as a gateway for visitors—an experience that is equal parts display, science, and education outreach. Inspired by the concept of “cycles” the arboretum is a figure-eight loop form. The design burrows into the ground and then curves up into the air with the loop offering 360 degree views of the garden. The jurors praised the way the project creates an experiential procession into the park.
Jiefangbei Tower CallisonRTKL
Set within densely populated Chongqing, China, the project creates a city within a city, rendering the tower as a contributing part of the urban fabric both in plan and volume. Articulation of form and spatial experience speaks to the characteristic mist that envelops Chongqing down to the flow of the pedestrian life at street level. Spaces cascade throughout the project to form volumetric interaction and connect to the city at every level. The jurors commended the project’s ability to weave public space into a building experience that is generally only reserved for a few.
Hillen Residence NIMMO
The Hillen Residence connects the homeowners to their surroundings by weaving into the landscape and then graciously opening toward expansive views of native Texan flora. A site-specific project, the form, both in plan and volume, is driven by natural connections stitched together with facets of the family’s daily life. The jurors appreciated the project’s ability to manifest a complex plan and idea into a simple gesture that allows the homeowner to experience the architecture and local environment from every vantage point.
Oak Cliff Brewing Company Munn Harris Architects
With a reclaimed industrial warehouse and minimal budget—a result of high equipment cost—the proposal for Oak Cliff Brewing Company aims to create a welcoming place for the public through minimal design costs. Using a large pecan tree on-site as inspiration, reclaimed wood elements act as a unifying palette and define the character of both indoor and outdoor spaces. The jurors were impressed by the modest proposal and its ability to do a lot with a little.
Fed Scraper – Juror Citation HKS, Inc.
The FED Scraper proposes a physical constraint to the U.S. Government’s ever-expanding spatial capacity. The proposal sinks the federal government building into a sub-grade metropolis where the terrain creates a physical limitation on growth. In turn, the ground place is activated for public programming, thus giving back large swaths of D.C. to the people. The jurors praised the project’s utopian ambition and visionary scale, as well as the use of humor and irony as a means of pushing the outcome outside of the comfort zone.
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.The commission to design Billy Dade Middle School (in a joint venture with KAI Texas) represented a departure from the firm's usual context. "It struck us that this particular campus had such a rich history and location—in the urban core of the city, and an area where the African-American community has been so important, historically," recalled Muñoz. "It was a great opportunity to explore what that means in the 21st century." Working closely with local residents, Muñoz & Company settled on the metaphor of a quilt, announcing the school's commitment to culturally attuned education with a translucent facade in multicolored glass and illuminated brick. Much of the preparation for the project took place outside the studio. "We approached it not just as designers, but in a more scholarly fashion," said Muñoz. The architects researched the school's namesake—educator, parent, and activist Dr. Billy Earl Dade—through interviews with family members and colleagues as well as archival materials found in a local museum. The linchpin of the design, however, fell into place at a dinner event Muñoz attended. There he asked Claudine Brown, assistant secretary for education and access at the Smithsonian Institution, to help him brainstorm a symbol of cultural identity in the African-American community, one that could help inspire young minds. "Immediately, with no hesitation, she said, 'I think you should look at quilts,'" said Muñoz. As the conversation and further research progressed, he learned that quilts have been used to tell stories, as visual signposts for safety, and as subtle acts of resistance—as well as to meet a basic need for warmth. In addition, said Muñoz, "We found superb artistry, [including] quilting collectives that keep the tradition alive." On the school's exterior, the architects expressed the quilt metaphor with multicolored glass walls fronting diagonal bays. Beyond the reference to quilts as cultural artifacts, the pattern projects a belief in the community's resilience. "That glass wall is an important way of expressing how anything can be woven together," said Muñoz. A patchwork rhythm recurs more subtly in the facade's brick walls, where transparent glass elements preserve a sense of openness. "At night, when the glass curtain wall is so transparent—like a lantern—you also get a sense of that in the brick wall," he explained. The entrance canopy, clad primarily in metal, deepens the material diversity of the building envelope, underlining the design's focus on inclusiveness. "You should be able to be yourself as you walk under it," said Muñoz. The quilt theme continues throughout the interior, notably in the tiled floors (inspired by the work of quilting cooperative Gee's Bend), displays of text from Dade's writings, quilts commissioned for the library, and a collection of salvaged doors lining the lobby walls. "Dade was a really strong mentor in an intergenerational fashion," explained Muñoz. We looked at a speech he made about opportunity and thought, 'What if we harvested doors from the neighborhood?' So in the lobby you see this patchwork of doors, meant to be doors of opportunity." Built to meet Dallas Independent School District's stringent environmental standards, Billy Dade "combined [environmental] sustainability with the idea of cultural sustainability," explained Muñoz. Though in keeping with the firm's track record of community-based design, the project was nonetheless a learning opportunity for the architects. "This was the first time that we've [designed] a school that is multicultural in a different way than what we've been used to working with," he said. "While the population was different, I hope people found something that they can see themselves in."