Luis Ayala of Gensler talks schematic design while walking us through the Administration Office for the Port of Corpus Christi.  While reviewing the site plan he will discuss views, parking considerations, and environmental concerns. He also will show the bubble diagram and building program for this project, as well as the multiple design iterations.

Practical Applications

Hello, I'm Luis Ayala, I'm an architect design director here in the Houston office for Gensler, and today I want to show you a very cool project that we're competing. This is a design competition. This is for the new administration office of the Port of Corpus Christi in Corpus Christi, Texas.

When we are in the building, also, it's important to understand the views that we're going to have. So, we have views to the sea, that the red arrows are showing. And the blue arrows are showing the views to the port.

It's a multi-billion dollar industry, and the CEO vision is that if we want to attract the most talented people, millennials, a building has to be able to sell your image. A building helps you to bring talented people to work for you, so that is the vision that we address and the client has. This is their actual building.

And this, because it's an intersection of a lot of cars coming and cars coming out of the parking garage, sometimes they are not looking at what is happening. So for that reason, we moved the pedestrian crossing that's here out of the intersection, so they are safer when they are crossing. People are looking at the street when they are pedestrians.

So we're trying to show that from second, and third, and fourth, the programs are different than what's happening on the first floor, so it looks like a series of sails. When i speak about the concept of the project. You'll be able to understand better what's happening here.

So when we go to the second and third floor, it's not a floor plan yet, it's just, we're bubbling, we're showing where the areas are going to be. And what we're trying to show here are the relationships of this program. So, we know the engineering, they work closely with coastal and bend bays and estuaries, so they need to be together.

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This bridge is going to be demolished a year after we build our building, and there is a new bridge coming here, a very big bridge. The problem with this bridge is that big ships are too big to go under the bridge so they have to take it down. When we were talking about the guiding principles that they send on their RFP, is short for request, for proposal, the first line item that they have is an iconic and flexy building, and so the design drivers are all of these, but what we thought is most important is what is the value of your brand, or the identity that a building can bring.

So when we were talking about this building being resilient, remember that we spoke about the first floor being sacrificial, so if there is a flood, the first floor can go away, but the second, third, fourth and fifth continue to operate non-stop. For that reason, we decided to put all the mechanical systems on the fifth floor. So all your air conditioning units are there and your pumps that are moving water are also there.

So it's glass, aluminum, that is basically maintenance free, it doesn't corrode, and concrete structures. So those are the most materials that we use. And on the West side we have brick, a brick wall.

In design-build, the owner gives you, they hire you and it's usually an architect and a construction company that team up and they have all the consultants, engineers and all the specialists working in the same team. And the client hires one team and they give the money, the whole money for the building to one team. So it's a turnkey operation.

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