Fall 2015 | University of Texas at Austin
In conjunction with the City of Leander, TX
Partner: William McCommon | Instructor: Matt Fajkus
See Also: Fulcrum - Built Mockup
Currently, the City of Leander hosts one of the most problematic urban conditions found in US cities, a high speed, high traffic corridor dividing its heart in two. With a rapidly expanding population, Leander is seeking a model for smart growth that takes alternative forms of transportation into consideration.
Vehicular infrastructure has long been the defining characteristic of the American landscape. Supported financially and culturally after WWII, it is fast falling into disrepair and out of favor.
As our relationship to this landscape changes, how does our architecture?
Leander is already host to multiple areas of burgeoning character, with the risk of each developing separately, unevenly and becoming isolated from one another. This current preference for a singular mode of transportation should be reversed, with multiple forms equitably woven together. By introducing civic program and pedestrian/vehicular infrastructure as a connection between east and west Leander, government and economic activity creates the fulcrum between old and new development.
Our proposal is a two-part system.
1. A canopy/infrastructural element that includes pedestrians into Leander.
2. A mixed-use building of city hall, offices, and retail to grow and sustain an urban presence.
In a city identified with and dominated by its infrastructure, engaging the rail and highway with public architecture is necessary in constructing a civic presence to the city. As a node between existing and new modes of transit, the city hall supports and incubates the life of the city in its new central role.