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Houston Endowment Headquarters

United States


  • Deborah Berke Partners with David Rubin Land Collective and Atelier Ten
  • Winner Kevin Daly Architects with TLS Landscape Architecture, Productora and Transsolar
  • Honourable mention Olson Kundig with Surfacedesign, Inc
  • Schaum/Shieh Architects with HKS and Andrea Cochran Landscape Architecture

In 2019, Houston Endowment, a leading philanthropy based in Texas, launched a two-stage global search for an outstanding team of architects and landscape architects to design their new Headquarters.

The circa 40,000 sq ft centre will be the philanthropy’s new public face and will provide dedicated space for its team and community partners, including healthy workspaces, accessible and inspiring meeting spaces, and flexible and innovative engagement facilities.

The US$20 million initiative will strengthen the Endowment’s work bringing people together from public, private, non-profit and philanthropic sectors to best meet the needs of the community and achieve lasting positive change for the greater Houston region.

Over 120 integrated teams from around the world entered this open competition. No design was required at the first stage – rather, architects made submissions on approach, experience and relevant skills. Four teams were shortlisted at the second stage and asked to submit concept designs, receiving an honorarium of US$50,000 once the competition concluded.

The Jury was unanimous in selecting the team led by Kevin Daly Architects and PRODUCTORA as the winner. This design concept envisaged an airy, elegant superstructure generously shaded by a large canopy within a grove of oak trees. The proposal was praised as a dynamic response to Houston’s architectural and landscape tradition.

Ann Stern, President and CEO, Houston Endowment, said:

‘We wanted to bring outstanding architecture to Houston to complement Houston’s notable architectural wonders, and this design successfully communicates openness and transparency while also providing a tranquil and inviting presence.’