Contemporary Arts Museum Renovation | Houston, Texas
Originally designed by Gunnar Birkerts and Associates in 1972, the Contemporary Arts Museum has a defining presence in Houston’s Museum District and is one of the city’s modern landmarks. Stern and Bucek embarked on the renovation of the 16,000 square foot facility with the intention of preserving and enhancing its architectural expression. The renovations moved offices to an adjacent frame house, opening below-grade first floor space for a gallery more than twice the size of the original. The architects also added an education room, new gift shop, expanded the art preparation area, and installed a new mechanical system. Additional alterations were made to meet current building codes and ADA requirements.
A series of carefully planned interventions by the professional team – which included landscape architects The Olin Partnership—addressed the building's exterior identity, accessibility, and landscaped environment. An existing grass terrace was opened along the street to form a vest-pocket park with a circular fountain basin at its center. A low concrete seating wall better defines the approach ramp, and on the street side a brightly painted steel and cable handrail replaced a deteriorating pipe rail. A white projecting aluminum canopy wedged into the difficult-to-find entry slot, now clearly marks the building entrance.
- Honor Award, Renovation/Restoration, Texas Society of Architects, 1998
Honor Award, Renovation/Restoration, Houston Chapter AIA, 1998
- Featured In:
Houston Chronicle, May 4, 1997
Texas Architect, September/October, 1998