Greater Texas Foundation Headquarters
Bryan, TX United States
The Greater Texas Foundation was cognizant of the need to develop a headquarters that embodied the core values of their organization. The Foundation owned an early 1900s lumber warehouse on a lush lot with views of nature but needed a new facility that offered different functionality. Page Principal Wendy Dunnam Tita partnered with Furman + Keil Architects and, as the design team, they successfully identified an opportunity to refurbish and reuse wood from the original structure, meeting the client's workplace objectives and upholding their principles.
Key to this effort were the strategic planning and programming sessions with the Board members, Building Committee and staff that the project team led prior to beginning design. The resulting facility is a LEED Gold certified building that provides a home for monthly board meetings, a healthy, collaborative work environment for staff and a place to host work sessions with partner organizations.
The pre-design sessions that set the stage for this successful project explored overall core values, organizational character and uniqueness, project goals, facts about the site dynamics and constraints as well as concepts from everyone’s perspective. The full project team, including the client, jointly developed a common vocabulary, such as “regional character,” “timeless,” “sustainable” and “100 year-old building” so that all could speak the same language when discussing design.
The final design solution was a park-like campus that transitions from the surrounding rural setting to the building through orchestrated landscape moves such as changes in topography, the addition of several trees, a large retention pond at the approach and a restored prairie which provides a new context for the building.
Imperative in the layout are the visual connections to the exterior and full integration of architecture and interior spaces. Also important to the project is an art program curated by the design team, including six commissioned pieces.