This week our own Kapil Upadhyaya and Jody Henry spoke at the USGBC’s GREENNC 2013 Symposium on the topic of post occupancy evaluations of sports and education spaces. Their presentation, “Connecting Clo and Flow – You won’t believe what was accomplished!” detailed what a “clo” factor is and how to convince a school district to accept a passively ventilated athletic space. They presented Kirksey’s recently completed Fort Bend Aquatic Practice Facility as an example of a successful passively ventilated space. The facility uses garage doors that double as shading devices and focus the path of air through the structure. The results of the Post Occupancy Evaluation performed on the space confirm that the unique passive ventilation techniques utilized throughout the building were successful.
Kapil and Jody focused their presentation into several learning objectives that are detailed below.
Objective #1: Identify six parameters that affect human thermal comfort.
Objective #2: Discuss specific application and variation of ‘clo’ value and air flow in school environments.
Objective #3: Analyze problems associated with closed and conditioned pool buildings: ventilation, thermal distribution, condensation and energy wastage.
Objective #4: Identify Inter-dependent design solutions for aquatic facilities that avoid the above problems and their dependence on climate.
Here at Kirksey we are all about healthy buildings, healthy people, and a healthy planet. We want to share a few tips we’ll be using to ensure we have an enjoyable, energy-efficient Thanksgiving.
Tip #1: Use the correct size pan for your stove burner. This keeps extra heat from escaping.
Tip #2: If you are hosting a large gathering this Thanksgiving use a cooler stocked with ice to hold drinks. You’ll free up space in your refrigerator and prevent cold air from escaping from frequent door openings.
Tip #3: The more freely the air moves in your oven the more efficiently it operates, so don’t cover your oven racks with foil. This saves you roasting time.
Tip #4: Every time you open the oven door while roasting your turkey you lost up to 25 degree of heat. So, use the light and a timer to check on the progress of your dinner.
Source: Alliance to Save Energy
Yesterday our design team had the privilege of attending the Grand Opening of Houston Area Safety Council’s new training campus in Pasadena, Texas. Located at the corner of Center Street and Spencer Highway at 5213 Center Street the campus represents a two-year initiative to expand safety training capabilities to meet the growing needs of the petrochemical, space and food industries in Houston and beyond.
The new state-of-the-art campus features 65,000 square feet of comfortable training space situated on 34 acres of land, with room to grow. To better serve the membership, the new campus includes a 220-seat auditorium with stadium seating, meeting spaces, computer labs with 650 workstations, multiple classrooms, distinct study areas and parking for over 1,000 vehicles.
On average the Houston Area Safety Council currently serves 1,600 people each day and training units are projected to reach over 700,000 for 2013. The new campus allows HASC to continue to meet the growing demand for safe workplaces and a quality workforce.
Minsuk Cho of Korean firm Mass Studies recently gave a thought-provoking lecture at Rice University and our own Alfonso Hernandez provided commentary featured on OffCite. According to Hernandez, Cho emphasized the idea of “working from seemingly binary oppositions that do not always seem binary – old vs. ephemeral, simple vs. complex, etc.” To read more about Cho’s design principles and body of work see the complete article here: http://offcite.org/2013/11/11/binary-oppositions-minsuk-cho-seoul-and-ephemerality-come-to-houston
Earlier this morning our design team attended Sylvan Beach Pavilion’s Grand Opening in La Porte, Texas and what an event it was. As attendees opened the double doors and entered the main ballroom they reminisced about prom, homecoming, and their favorite concerts held at the pavilion. Several couples even danced around the restored ballroom, humming classic tunes and enjoying the view. Renovating Sylvan Beach Pavilion preserved more than just the historical elements of the building; it preserved the memories of an entire community.
Sylvan Beach Pavilion has been serving the La Porte community since its opening in 1893. Hurricanes destroyed the original open-air pavilion, paving the way for the current midcentury modern gem that opened its doors in 1956. Over the years, the pavilion hosted numerous community-wide gatherings and musical guests such as Manny Green, Mickey Gilley, Ray McKinley and the Houston Orchestra. Unfortunately, due to its coastal location, the building was damaged by Hurricane Carla in 1961, Hurricane Alicia in 1983, and Hurricane Ike in 2008, ultimately causing its closure.
In 2011, newly elected Commissioner Jack Morman made it a priority to start restoring Sylvan Beach Pavilion. The Commissioner was aided by a local non-profit organization, Friends of Sylvan Beach Park & Pavilion, who secured three separate historic designations for the building. The design team worked tirelessly to preserve the historical elements of the building and ensure the renovated pavilion meets current coastal windstorm requirements. Several classic structural elements of the building were reconstructed such as the floor-to-ceiling window wall, circular bar, and deck among others. The transformation is substantial and the restored Sylvan Beach Pavilion will serve the community for years to come.
The people of Kirksey are made up of more than just architects, designers, marketers, etc. We have a strong sense of community involvement and a drive to give back to the community that serves us every day. For this reason and many others is why Kirksey participates in Tour de Pink, the first Texas bike ride solely benefiting breast cancer. This year was Tour de Pink’s 9th anniversary and Kirksey’s 9th year to participate. The folks of Kirksey provided volunteer services at a pit stop equipped with beverages, food, goodwill, cheering, and all around support for the riders.
Tour de Pink is a wonderful organization that helps by providing mobile mammography units for the community as a way to connect with patients. Funds also provide mammograms and further diagnostic testing and improved equipment and processes. In 2012, Pink Ribbons Project produced $470,000 that went to programs for breast health screening, treatment, education, and support services. The bonus is there is still time to donate! You have till October 15th to make a donation and be the change you want to see in the world.
Kirksey will continue our involvement and hopes you are inspired to give back as well – whether it’s Tour de Pink or any other organization that benefits the people of our community.
Here are some photos from the inspiring and fun-filled day!
First place in what, you ask? Good question!
Sherwin Williams (yeah, the paint people!) recently announced the winners of their third annual Student Design Contest – STIR and our very own, Aqueel Suleimanji, won first place in the Residential category!
Contest judge and Director of Color Marketing, Jackie Jordan, said “overall the quality of student work was spectacular. The competition was tight all around.” Entries came from all over the country including Arizona State University, New York School of Interior Design, and of course, Houston Community College.
The concept for Aqueel’s design was to create a functional and fluid space for the Moore family who needed an open plan for their active lifestyle. This was done through separate wings with entertainment and living zones, the master suite, office space, and guest space. The space gives an overall spa feel by using fluidity and water as the main themes throughout the house. Evoking a sense of calm was achieved through color, texture, organization, and furniture selection.
Color played an important role in Aqueel’s design as it provided a backdrop for all the natural stone and wood used in the residence thus inspiring a sense of Old World aging. Aqueel chose colors you would see in antiques – natural tones with pops of color using calm blues and warm neutrals.
Given Aqueel is humble and modest, we’re here to brag for him and boast about this huge honor. The Kirksey family is full of talented individuals and it’s always a pleasure to give them a virtual round of applause as well as a real life thumbs up/pat on the back/handshake/bear hug, etc.
Congratulations, Bravo, Hoorah, Aqueel! You did an outstanding job and we’re so happy your work was recognized!
The Kirksey + Lake Flato team are very excited to announce their UTSA San Saba Hall project welcomed its new residents yesterday!
The project includes a 182,000 gsf, 616-bed student dormitory complete with community rooms, kitchen, lounges, laundries, and meeting/seminar/study rooms. I don’t know about you, but these sound better than most apartment complexes!
We hope the students enjoy and take advantage of their new home and wish them all the best in this new school year. Go Roadrunners!
Here are some photos from yesterday’s GRAND OPENING!
As architects and designers, the end goal is not to acquire awards but to meet and exceed the end user’s goals and expectations and create architecture that benefits the community and environment. Awards are simply the tasty icing on the cake and who doesn’t like icing?!?
Kirksey was extremely fortunate and honored as two of our project submissions won 2013 AIA Houston Design Awards: Downtown Houston Childcare Center, which is a quiet and playful oasis for children to learn and play, and Baylor College of Medicine NSBRI, which conducts biomedical research to support the long-term human presence and the development and exploration of space and develops countermeasures and technologies that substantially reduce biomedical risks associated with human space travel. Phew, that was a mouthful! These projects won in the Under 50,000 sf and Interior Architecture categories, respectively.
Kirksey is extremely proud of these projects and would also like to thank the clients for the collaborative effort put forth on these projects. We see our projects as a team effort that includes all parties. Without everyone’s hard work, creativity, and dedication, our jobs wouldn’t be possible.
Thank you to all of our clients for the opportunities that allow us to do what we love.
Kirksey is pleased to announce that Gary Machicek, AIA, LEED AP, has been promoted to Vice President. Equipped with a vision for each project he undertakes, Gary believes that good design should be effortlessly functional and beautiful, innovative and sustainable, and most importantly client-focused.
In addition to his Vice Presidency, he is also a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Houston and a recipient of the Houston Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 award.
Kirksey is also proud to announce the following promotions:
Emily Winters, AIA, LEED AP
Carrie Lust, LEED AP
Skye Smith, LEED AP BD+C