There’s a new spot for your architecture and design fix in downtown Dallas from a source you’ll recognize. The AD EX — formerly the Dallas Center for Architecture and short for The Architecture and Design Exchange — had its official launch on Saturday, Dec. 8. The organization held the celebration with Downtown Dallas Inc. and the Better Block Foundation in its new digs located at Republic Center, which is near Thanks-Giving Square. Even with the new name and location, the Ad Ex will have the same great programming, including diverse exhibits, weekly free Lunch Learning Sessions, and guided architecture tours.
If you’re already intrigued, you can stop by between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, with late and weekend hours of 8 p.m. Thursdays and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays.
Children and those who never grew up (you know who you are) are going to love one of the first exhibits: “Building Toys and Toy Buildings: Architecture Through a Child’s Eyes.” You can scope vintage building toys such as blocks with their modern counterpart — the omnipresent LEGO — getting a cameo. Of course, you have to keep your mitts to yourselves in the exhibit, but you can design and build your own structure in the “Construction Zone.”
The second exhibit, “A Window into the Architect’s Mind: 44th Annual AIA Dallas Ken Roberts (KRob) Memorial Delineation Competition,” is a Dallas classic that honors hand-drawn and digital architectural drawings by both seasoned professionals and students throughout the world. According to the AD EX, it’s the longest-running exhibition of its kind in operation.
And while the exhibits are great, most people will love the street presence the AD EX has at the base of Republic Center. It’s by design, as one of the aims of the center’s new look and location is to create a physical starting point for a citywide conversation on huge issues we now face, including: walkability, mobility, historic preservation, affordable housing, economic development, and more.
Lofty goals, but we’re confident the AD EX has gotten off to a good start.