Public & Cultural

Visitors at Texas Library 'Sitting in Tree House'

When the City of Seguin, Texas, decided to tear down its old library and build a new one, the priority was to leverage the natural beauty of its site along the banks of Walnut Creek. In Nov. 2017, the Seguin Public Library earned LEED Gold certification through the U.S. Green Building Council. Bringing the outdoors inside of this two-story facility, a curtainwall frames these natural views and leverages natural light. In addition, cantilevered decks overlook the creek and a popular walking and biking trail. Designed by PGAL of Los Angeles and 720 Design of Dallas, the 43,000-sq.-ft. library is three times the size of the original building, providing more area for books, technology and spaces

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Channel Glass Shines at New D.C. Museum

The Museum of the Bible features channel glass, which not only defines the museum’s entrance, but also brings daylight in and establishes a sense of privacy. Washington, D.C.’s new Museum of the Bible features a brilliant, 22.5-ft. towering channel glass wall-cladding, which defines the museum’s entrance and Arcade. The glass conveys a crystalline appearance, symbolic of the original building’s function as a cold storage warehouse. In other areas throughout the museum, translucent channel glass façade elements bring daylight in, while establishing a sense of privacy. Channel glass creates virtually uninterrupted walls of glass, limitless in length and up to 23-ft

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Aquarium 'Sheds' Water Usage

With nearly two million guests each year, the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago needed a commercial restroom upgrade to match its water efficiency objectives. challenge: Welcoming nearly two million guests each year, Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium is not only home to 32,000 animals, but also a popular location for local business meetings and events. So when the Chicago institution required an upgrade to its commercial restrooms, its goal of water efficiency and saving were top of mind. Devoted to its vision of a world thriving with aquatic life, sustained by people who love, understand and protect it, Shedd is a leader in the rescue and rehabilitation of aquatic wildlife across the world. Not o

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Theater Achieves Open and Unique Aesthetic

The new Writers Theater, located in Glencoe, Ill., designed by Studio Gang Architects, creates a space that brings energy to the town while maintaining an essence of transparency and fluidity. In 2016, Writers Theater packed up and moved to a new location in Glencoe, Ill., in order to perform in a larger space and attract additional followers.  Decked with floor-length windows and open social spaces, collaboration is encouraged with the hope of better uniting people through theater. Located in the downtown area, the building reflects the theater company’s objective to maintain intimacy and audience involvement. The main theater seats 250 patrons with a second performance venu

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Pavers Add Distinction to Boston Project

Boston’s 101 Seaport is a project unique in concept and installation. Functionality, performance and aesthetics were all taken into consideration when selecting paving materials. Creating projects of true distinction takes the collaboration of an entire team. 101 Seaport is a project unique in concept and installation. The designers at Copley-Wolff Design Group were challenged with a project that would ultimately become a mixed-use facility to accommodate both commercial and residential concerns, in on-grade and elevated areas. Functionality, performance and aesthetics were all taken into consideration when selecting paving materials.

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From Past to Present

Once a metaphor for economic and political turmoil in the area, the venerable “Unfinished Theatre” in Lublin, Poland, needed to bring itself into the 21st century. Two rooms especially benefited from a seating upgrade that leaves visitors in step with modern aesthetics and comfort. The “Unfinished Theatre” is the name that the inhabitants of Lublin nicknamed the old building that has occupied the city center for more than 40 years. With construction starting in 1960, it was set to be Europe’s largest opera palace. Funding problems at the start, together with the economic crisis of the 1980s and political changes at the end, left the unfinished building as a metaphor for a society that went d

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Power on the Fly

Legrand’s Plugmold Multioutlet Systems are compatible with airport furnishings and its Vista Point5 USB Pedestal easily integrates with terminal architecture; both provide commuters with power on the go. Passengers can get a full charge, download in-flight entertainment and contact loved ones and business associates while they wait in the boarding area.

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Tree Pose

Burkina Faso-born Francis Kéré was selected to design the Serpentine Pavilion, a temporary installation at the Serpentine Gallery, Kensington Garden, London. His Berlin-based practice has designed everything from schools to retail environments. Kéré’s installation addresses how people move through the gardens while they interact with one another. “I was interested in how my contribution to this Royal Park could not only enhance the visitors’ experience of nature, but also provoke a new way for people to connect with each other,” says Kéré. Kéré’s pavilion speaks to the ecological and social value of trees. “It is a micro cosmos that fuses cultural references from my home country of Burkina F

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Monument Showcases High Heritage

The Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture on D.C.’s National Mall relied on a bronze wash which was a monumental component of the design, and its longevity. Built on the last available spot on the National Mall in Washington D.C., the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) included many partners that worked collaboratively during the design and construction phases. Three American architecture firms, The Freelon Group, architect of record and design team leader—and now part of global design firm Perkins+Will; Davis Brody Bond, with extensive experience in museum projects; and the local D.C.- based firm SmithGroup, joined forc

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College Hits High Note with Acoustics

Mesa Community College’s re-dedication to music and the arts gave birth to a new performing arts center, acoustically fine-tuned with an inner and outer shell of sound-reflective masonry. The transformation of the Mesa Community College (MCC) Performing Arts Center began when the college purchased the Harkins Movie Theatre, a vacant movie house built in 1979, to drive student interest in the arts and offer a broad range of musical, dance and theatrical performances. Designed by Jones Studio of Phoenix, the $10.3 million, multi-purpose facility, opened as the MCC Performing Arts Center in 2014. This rebirth and rededication into the arts found the center in need of some acoustic fine-tuning,

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