Trinity River Audubon Center
Brown Reynolds Watford Architects
3535 Travis Street, #250, Dallas, TX 75204
Hill International, Inc.
5307 East Mockingbird Lane, #700, Dallas, TX 75206
Date Bid: Feb 2007 Construction Period: Apr 2007 to Sep
Total Square Feet: 20,791 Site: 120 acres.
Number of Buildings: One.
Building Size: First floor, 20,336; mezzanine, 455; total, 20,791
Building Height: Varies.
Basic Construction Type: New/Steel Frame.
Foundation: Cast-in-place, pier & grade beam, slab-on-grade,
elevated deck over crawl space. Exterior Walls: Curtainwall, wood
siding, metal panel. Roof: Membrane, garden. Floors:
Concrete. Interior Walls: Metal stud drywall.
Projected and/or Modeled Energy Usuage KBTU/SF/yr: 867.
Cost Estimator: Hill International, Inc. - 5307 East Mockingbird
Lane, #700, Dallas, TX 75206
Design Architect: Antoine Predock Architect PC - 300 12th Street
NW, Albuquerque, NM 87102
Structural Engineer: Jaster-Quintanilla/Dallas - 2105 Commerce
St. #300, Dallas, TX 75201
MEP Engineer: Lopez Garcia Group - 1950 North Stemmons Freeway,
#6000, Dallas, TX 75207
Exhibit Designer: Lyons/Zaremba Inc. - 4 Faneuil Hall
Marketplace, 5th Floor, Boston, MA 02109
The Trinity River Audubon Center resides within the largest urban
hardwood forest in the United States within a few miles of the nearby
urban downtown environment. At this intersection of city and nature, the
Center is sculpted by elements of the natural world - earth, water, and
air. This site, previously overlooked for decades, was improperly used
as a waste landfill while coexisting with century old native trees and
serpentine, deeply cut riverbanks. The closed landfill is a visionary
restoration project, reclaiming 120 acres of the Great Trinity River
Corridor for the use of future generations. The Center was conceived as
a teaching tool, promoting both a greater appreciation of surrounding
ecosystems and an understanding of man"s impact on the environment.
Additionally, the Center allows visitors to appreciate the uniqueness of
this forgotten place, while understanding the evolution of the land
caused by man's impact through domestic development. The facility
distills the energy of this restored place through exhibits, classrooms,
and research laboratories that celebrate the land.
The Center is not only part of the landscape, carefully placed within,
but also a reflection of its surroundings. Each wing reflects a
different biome of the Great Trinity Forest. The dichotomy of concrete
feather walls softens the envelope while reminding visitors of Audubon"s
focus. The spaces are flexible and energy efficient. An outdoor corridor
to classrooms reduces the need for conditioned space. Partitioned rooms
are used as small classrooms or opened for large meeting areas. The
great hall and cafe are also open to house various types of events and
provide visitors a comfortable space to appreciate nature from the
indoors. Perhaps more significant however, is the dedication shown in
restoring this expansive site. Following the state"s criteria and with
the goal of returning the land to its natural state for use with future
generations, the plan consolidated the waste into capped hills replanted
with prairie grass and native trees. At the base of the hills, a series
of cascading wetland marshes and ponds captures and polishes runoff from
adjoining neighborhoods and prairies before returning the cleansed water
to the river.
As one of the first of the Trinity River Corridor projects to be
completed, the Center is a true testament to designing within the
context of the natural environment. Perhaps greater than what the
building represents - a sustainable model that responds to the specific
conditions of its site - is what this building actually brings to the
Southeast Dallas community; namely, an educational, and community shared
space that is a catalyst and true example of change and hope within a
community that has long needed both. With a living laboratory that will
host thousands of school children a year and a gathering space for a
variety of community events throughout the year, the new Trinity River
Audubon Center has already succeeded in bringing together the urban
community with the green environment virtually at their doorstep that
most never realized existed.
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