Memorial to a Memorial in Downtown Tallahassee

June 14, 2018 by: Ben Heimsath

Visitors today should note a rather unusual plaque just to the left of the hotel’s front door. The memorial indirectly notes the historic Hotel Floridan, was the premier location for legislators and leaders. Tallahassee Magazine shared an unattributed quote: “(W)hat bills weren’t passed at the Capitol were passed at The Floridan.” When the Floridan was in its prime, a family shared a long goodbye ... Read More

Memorial

Restored Chapel in Clear Lake - Update

June 07, 2018 by: Ben Heimsath

A family trip to Clear Lake Park was a good excuse to revisit the Bay Area Museum. This facility is housed in a repurposed church that was saved from demolition in the late 1970’s. I blogged about this facility in 2016 but had not been able to see the interior. As luck would have it, this time the museum was open! The interior has been restored faithfully with much of the original layout intact. ... Read More

Worship Space / Preservation / Adaptive Reuse / Chapels / Church Adaptive Reuse

A Street Art Classic in Los Feliz - Make Art Not War

May 31, 2018 by: Ben Heimsath

We expect street artists to highlight their newest or cutting edge images to grab our attention. During a recent trip to Los Angeles, however, I was drawn to this street art for the opposite reason. Driving down Hillhust Avenue in Los Feliz, what I saw was instantly familiar and recognizable - a Shepherd Fairy classic, “Make Art, Not War.” Shepard Fairey is one of the artists who have elevated ... Read More

Draylen Mason Tribute in Lovingly Rendered Street Art

May 24, 2018 by: Ben Heimsath

We look the arts to express things we can’t otherwise describe. In recent weeks, the Austin community has experienced feelings of horror, vulnerability, loss, and betrayal associated with the recent bombing event. One Austin street artist has been able to create a remarkable piece that captures our feelings while paying a loving tribute to one of the victims, Draylen Mason. On the side of an ... Read More

Suddenly Sacred / East Austin / Street Art

Church Planning and Transportation Technology

February 01, 2018 by: Ben Heimsath

Modern churches have consistently been planned to accommodate transportation based on the personal car. Church promoters have advised congregations to provide an abundance of parking spaces, as many as one space per two seats in the assembly. This has resulted in most new churches filling their properties with oceans of asphalt. I've blogged before about innovative transportation but things are ... Read More

Transportation / Master Planning / Church Site Development / Church Change

Church Design and Transportation Technology - Some Not so Obvious Impacts

January 21, 2018 by: Ben Heimsath

For churches, radical transportation changes are realistically a long-term concern, However, as churches make long-term decisions, it is not too soon to think about the consequences of at least some of these trends. News out of the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show is all about transportation. Self-driving cars are no longer experimental and dozens of companies are promoting alternatives to taxis, ... Read More

Transportation / Master Planning / Church Change

Churches and Natural Disasters -Trends With Not so Obvious Impacts on Church Design

January 05, 2018 by: Ben Heimsath

Considering so many events last year were so unprecedented I’ve been thinking about the effects of all these changes. A number of not so obvious trends are poised to have big impacts on the built environment. What's more, these trends may change the way we understand spiritual places and worship environments. Salem Lutheran Church in Houston - Rising waters spared the new sactuary, but old ... Read More

Church Design & Construction

Shephard Fairey Was Here

May 23, 2017 by: Ben Heimsath

It may not be a celebrity sighting, but for the contemporary art world, may as well be! World renown muralist, activist, and street artist, Shephard Fairey left his signature mark on a few left-over buildings in Austin not too long ago. These images are two variations of Fairey’s iconic graphic, OBEY GIANT which has appeared on posters, stickers, murals, and in art galleries all over the world.   ... Read More

Austin / Street Art

Street Art Homage to Pop Art and Austin

February 26, 2017 by: Ben Heimsath

A new street art piece appeared this weekend at one of the main intersections in the Mueller development. Local street artists have been officially and unofficially using anonymous utility boxes as canvases for some wonderful images. This new offering is from celebrated local artist, Truth. My wife and I noticed this striking image and had to stop for a closer look. The composition is a direct ... Read More

East Austin / Street Art

Mid Century Modern Church for Sale

February 21, 2017 by: Ben Heimsath

Full disclosure, our firm was involved in moving St. Boniface to a new facility, leaving a Mid Century Modern church vacant and ready for a new use. The congregation built a distinctive stone edifice in 1960 close to the active creek that runs along the edge of the unincorporated town of Comfort, Texas. That creek is the reason for the church’s relocation in 2006. On two separate occasions, major ... Read More

Adaptive Re-use / Church Adaptive Reuse