2 3 live&learn&rejoice: austin city hall

February 11, 2011

austin city hall

though i've worked down the street from city hall for years, only recently did i venture inside and wow, what a building it is. limestone on the outside (516 tons worth) and designed to capture the spirit of the hill country, ultra-cool on the inside with something like 66,000 square feet of copper lining the ceilings. things are done at slants and angles to minimize right angles and the theme throughout is transparency in government so lots of windows and glass walls. architect was antoine predock, http://www.predock.com/.

on fridays from spring through fall, live music plays during lunchtime and the stairway doubles as seating across from the built-in outdoor stage. inside yearround is "the people's gallery" -- a selection of 100 pieces of art from central texas artists on display throughout the building and members of the public are welcome to wander through offices discovering each piece. this collection rotates each january so worth repeat visits. lots of other nice finishes touches, just very nicely done.

and if that is not enough, this building is a role model of sustainability and won a gold rating for leadership in energy and environmental design.

please note previous blog and know that it has a distinctive "cantilevered" point that extends almost 50 feet from the building over second street -- meant to be ? an armadillo tail? a point north? a stinger? i'm not sure i understand or appreciate this feature of the building quite yet, but one day perhaps it will inspire me.

austinites should be very proud.