35 years of TBG: public
Public projects have the potential to reach large groups of people — millions, even. For this reason, among others, quality of design is a high priority. TBG has been tasked with the great responsibility and honor to design extremely impactful public projects, and below is a handful of examples.
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center Luci and Ian Family Garden — Austin, Texas
Designed by TBG and completed in 2014, the Wildflower Center was a SITES pilot project at the University of Texas. This project is symbolic because eight years later the City of Austin was the first city in the country to incorporate the SITES landscape performance rating system into local policy. The 4.5-acre garden has whimsical features like a walk-in grotto with waterfall, oversized bird nests woven from on-site grapevines, a walk-through Fibonacci spiral forged of mosaic-inlaid limestone walls, karstic limestone boulders with interactive watering holes, and a flowing creek with dinosaur footprints that enchant and educate children of all ages.
Hillcrest Village Green — Dallas, Texas
What used to be a lifeless shopping center in north Dallas is now a vibrant, pedestrian-oriented park. The two promenades flanking the park include restaurant and outdoor dining for patrons. At Hillcrest Village visitors can stroll around the site and shop, and families can play with their children at the 1.5-acre park. A food truck park is also part of the site’s revitalization. Public engagement meetings and forums led by the firm ensured local citizens were direct contributors to TBG’s newly envisioned Hillcrest Village Shopping Center design.
Q2 Stadium — Austin, Texas
The home of Austin’s first professional sports team deserves a stadium that lived up to the hype, and that’s exactly what it got. It’s more than a stadium; rather, a multifaceted civic destination. The design prioritizes green infrastructure with habitat creation, rainwater capture and reuse, pervious paving and drought-tolerant planting design. In fact, Q2 has received LEED Silver from the US Green Building Council. At the time of construction, it had the largest canopy structure of any MLS stadium. TBG worked closely with Gensler to achieve a vision featuring activation for vibrant daily use, special events and match days.
The Shops at Park Lane — Dallas, Texas
Another surface parking lot conversion, The Shops at Park Lane invites the people of Dallas to linger outside and relax. The multipurpose green shows movies and serves as a site for yoga and casual lounging. Rich materials and elegant details have breathed new life into the area. The shopping center has been very well-received by the city and was even selected as one of 13 landscape projects for the Landscape Architecture Foundation’s 2017 Case Study Investigation (CSI) program, which documents the benefits of exemplary landscape projects.
The Pitch — Austin, Texas
With its rapidly increasing population, north Austin was in need of an entertainment hub. The Pitch is a response to this, with connectivity to Parmer Pond business park as well as Austin FC’s training facility. It is immediately iconic, providing a collection of amenities and gathering space. TBG’s landscape architecture scope included picnic tables and fire pits, a rolling lawn with a stage for concerts and performances, a volleyball court and roof terraces. The design team also utilized the retention pond, an unsightly but necessary piece of drainage infrastructure and built a half mile walking trail around it, increasing connectivity for its neighbors and visitors. The Pitch is open to the public every day and is often utilized as a watch spot for Austin FC games as well as public and private events.
Highland ATX — Austin, Texas
Highland Mall was Austin’s first indoor shopping mall, opening in 1971 until its closure in April of 2015, having become derelict and bare. The 80-acre site, however, did have great redevelopment potential and has since experienced pedestrian-oriented conversion with progressive urban design guidelines. The mall portion became a new science and technology campus, surrounded by trendy residences, offices, retail and a hotel. The City of Austin Planning & Development Center consolidates multiple offices and is an Austin Energy Green Building 3-Star project. The TBG design also included the relocation of two large heritage trees, too.
Mayor Vera Calvin Plaza — Burleson, Texas
Home to about 50,000 residents, the City of Burleson converted the area fronting Burleson City Hall into a multipurpose civic plaza that has become central to the town community. The reimagined Mayor Vera Calvin Plaza pays homage to Burleson’s historical legacy, with design that integrates two trolley cars from the early 20th century when it was a prominent stop on the historic interurban railway system. The plaza received a CLIDE award in 2021 and Best Project award by ENR the same year.