Austin has recently been described as a “turbo-charged tech megapolis.” No doubt, the growth of Austin is being determined by industry newcomers, but can this development also be transformative without losing Touch with the environmental services that give Austin its character? Often termed as Green Growth, architecture can take part in the aim to foster economic development while ensuring that natural assets continue to provide the resources on which our well-being relies. This of course can come from making our buildings more energy efficient, but might we also be considerate of ecology over form-making, impactful social activities, and/or driving growth in the digital world? Our robust, well-functioning society must accommodate and facilitate the wellness of all its citizens and ALL its living beings. The social infrastructure of Austin’s Lady Bird Lake, greenery, parks, and ecology tend to the public welfare of the society which cannot be overlooked and this will be the focus of our semester.

Networks for beehives, plazas, and services could be the best architectural interventions to protect and foster stewardship of the natural world. Supporting those who steward our environment is also to be considered for design. This studio will also engage other stakeholders in this conversation of transformation. We will collaborate with agencies within the City of Austin, such as the Bee City Initiative, the Trail Conservancy, and Parks and Recreation Rangers. We will join forces with dedicated ecological advocates, like the Healthy Hive Foundation of Austin. Bottom-up strategy coupled with top-down considerations.




Fall 2023