with HKS and Andrea Cochran Landscape Architecture
We think of the Houston Endowment Headquarters as a small hub within the larger natural and urban ecology of Houston. The building is sited at the edge of Spotts Park, a shared front yard for the Endowment and the greater community. Each side of the building invites people in—by car from Willia Street to the North or on foot or by bike from the park and terraces at the other three sides. Textures in the landscape and the façade weave building and nature together with paved gardens at the ground level that extend the main engagement spaces of the Endowment into the outdoors. The terracotta screen façade turns the building into a shimmering image that shifts with the weather and time of day. The screen, along with a ventilating atrium and geothermal well layer as softening devices to mediate the Houston climate while staying connected to the outside.