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horseshoe court in one of the many plazas reflects the casual atmosphere of the complex. Bottom The pond and gardens provide inviting spaces for walking, reading, and fishing.

exhibits and rotunda space on a recent summer day, it brings some focus to the broader meaning of public acceptance and accessibility for the Library and Museum. The complex is not architecturally flamboyant or cutting-edge. The design does, however, include thoughtful features and spaces where the Bushes can work and relax. An office and private apartment accommo-

The complex is not architecturally flamboyant or cutting-edge. The design does, however, include thoughtful features and spaces where the Bushes can work and relax. date their frequent visits; the ample grounds are often used for walking the family dog; and a horseshoe pit, a catch-and-release fishing pond, and their private cemetery are all included in the complex. These elements contribute to the sense of place at the Bush Library and Museum, leading visitors away from expectations of presidential grandeur. For instance, just beyond the fishing pond, a small rose and native plants garden was later added to the master-planned site. Created by local hands and sponsors, the garden sits in gentle contrast to the more rigid landscaping plan. Bush stated in his acceptance speech for the Republican Party’s nomination that he wanted to see a “kinder, gentler America,” and that spirit carries through the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum complex. The fishing pond is open to the public, and I wouldn’t be surprised if there were a place to check out horseshoes. Thomas Hayne Upchurch, AIA, is principal of Upchurch Architects in Brenham.

11/12 2013

Texas Architect 67

Texas Architect November/December 2013: Campus Architecture  

This issue explores the value of architectural diversity and creative responses to context. The discussion begins with a series on the three...

Texas Architect November/December 2013: Campus Architecture  

This issue explores the value of architectural diversity and creative responses to context. The discussion begins with a series on the three...