A playground in the middle of a pedestrian street in Historic Downtown Boulder, Colorado, is only this desolate at 8 a.m. on a Sunday. Photo by Staff

The recent D Magazine special edition on Walkable New Urbanism has us all thinking about how Dallas could, or will game this trend. As real estate and design professionals, we all have an opinion, and likely some education we paid good money on for this topic. It’s not, however, easy to see where our skills translate to “making a difference.”

Cue the American Institute for Architecture and their “Architecture On Tap” series. Last month’s event focused on how we can go about impacting our communities, with a panel of experts to discuss: Zaida Basora, VP of Huitt Zollar and former Assistant Director of Public Works at the City of Dallas; John Hetzel, real estate broker with Madison Partners and Deep Ellum Foundation Board Member; and Evan Sheets, Senior Planner with the City of Dallas Design Studio.

From this diverse group of professionals we heard one rallying call: Show up.

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When you design a building, what’s the first thing you think about? Is it scale? Is it use? Is it presence? 

What about how the building and the way it is designed is part of a larger goal of engaging a community? All of these questions and more can be discussed at the next AIA Dallas summer happy hour panel, “Designing in Active Voice: Avenues for Professional Advocacy.”

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Architecture on Tap

The Dallas chapter of the American Institute of Architects sponsors a lively series, Architecture on Tap, which is having its final event this week.

How big is your digital footprint?” will explore four perspectives on the use of technology and social media within the practice of architecture.

The three panelists will be Bob Borson, AIA, of Malone Maxwell Borson ArchitectsRick del Monte, FAIA, of Beck Group; and Eddie Fortuna, AIA, of Omniplan.

Discussion topics include:

  • What effect does the use of social media have on the studio environment?
  • How has the increased ease to connect with content from across the world affect the way we view the built environment?
  • ​At what point is our use of digital interaction within the work place too much?

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