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d e s i g n

United Way Center architect

Gensler

contractor

Tellepsen Builders, LP

consultants

IA Naman & Associates (MEP); Haynes Whaley &

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Associates (structural); RG Miller (civil); Camden Builders (con-

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struction manager); Office of James Burnett (landscaping); HFP

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Acoustical Consultants, Inc. (A/V, acoustical); Datasors Consulting LLC (information technology) photographer

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Joe Aker, Aker/Zvonkovic

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In contrast to its previous ‘anonymous’ office building,

vides shade on the south and captures light on the north,

United Way’s new campus near downtown Houston

letting natural light complement the interior’s bright, airy

establishes a highly visible presence for the nonprofit

feel. Next door, the Community Resource Center continues

organization that is also an asset to the surrounding

the open design with its own angled roof, glass exterior,

community. Composed of two brick-and-glass buildings,

and bright yellow interior wall spanning the length of the

a parking garage, and gardens, the 90,000-sf complex

building. With residential development increasing in the

designed by Gensler was completed in March 2005. The

surrounding Houston Heights neighborhood, a direct con-

larger administration building’s glass exterior encloses

nection to the parking garage affords access to community

four parallel interior walls, each painted a bold color,

spaces in the Center on evenings and weekends.

either yellow, red, green, or blue. Within each segment is

riv e

United Way of the Texas Gulf Coast

5 ground Floor plan 1 Entry 2 pre-function gallery 3 reception 4 campaign hall 5 meeting room 6 board room 7 office area

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client

United Way Center, Houston

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project

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jeanette wiemers

a large, open hall that becomes a hub for volunteers and loaned executives during the annual campaign, meeting United Way’s need for versatile as well as regular office

r e s o u r c e s transluscent panel :

spaces. Each segment also holds meeting rooms, offices,

acoustical ceilings : Clunn Acoustical Systems; precast concrete : East

and other flexible workspaces to meet the organization’s

Texas Precast; terrazzo and ceramic tile : Southern Tile & Terrazzo Co.,

seasonal needs. The distinctive roof of each segment pro-

Inc.; masonry units : Acme; roofing membrane : Firestone

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American Mainline Products, Inc.;

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Texas Architect May/June 2007: San Antonio