Paul Kweton, Hidekazu Takahashi, Shawn Lutz SMLA
New Architecture Center Houston
The new AIA Architecture Center Houston has to function in multiple ways at once. The new space requires curatorial flexibility including exhibitions, lectures, meetings, social events as well as a functional and efficient office environment for various modes of work ranging from formal to casual. Giving the limited square footage and natural lighting conditions, the goal is to have spaces / rooms interact, allowing for simple spatial adaptations and offering a framework to expand in the future. Phase 1 of the project needs to offer the same spatial opportunities that the combination of Phase 1 and Phase 2 delivers. To accommodate this spatial range of possibilities within a limited square footage, we are proposing an highly orthogonal / efficient program layout and a mechanism of partially movable opaque and transparent partitions due to strategically placed tracks in ceiling and floor to offer various spatial scenarios. The purposely aseptic look of the floor, wall and ceilings puts emphasis on exhibited materials and social activities, highlighting the works of the Houston architectural community.
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