Baldridge Architects has had many homes since its beginnings in 2005. First it was rented space on South Lamar. It was a giant step when we renovated our prior office building at 1010 West Lynn (see Baldridge Architects). We enjoyed that space and it was gratifying to witness it receiving award from the Texas Society of Architects and AIA Austin.
But as our projects have grown in size and complexity, so has our number. In order to fuel our growth and to provide amenities lacking in our prior space (it was crisp but modest), we purchased property at 5120 Burnet to act as our new home.
The property comprises three discrete structures. The first phase of the renovations was the complete re-imaging of the 1961 cmu storefront structures that has housed a TV showroom, offices, a thrift store, a motorcycle dealership and even a vape lounge.
We worked again with a nuanced white exterior palette, connecting the project to our trade dress and our prior home while featuring the preexisting signature 1961 cmu work. Unlike our prior space, however, we had the luxury of working with a more robust material palette within, featuring warm residential scaled nests.
While Baldridge Architects jettisoned design-build as a business model in 2010, we opted to act as the general contractor on this special project but vowed to work only with the friends in the construction industry he had made over the last 19 years. We largely succeeded. Indeed the project was managed by Burton’s close friend Michael Sisson who worked with Burton at the Peter Gluck designed Floating Box House in 2005. The built result is a testament to both architectural rigor and to the talent embedded in Austin’s community:
- Engineering: Duffy Engineering
- Structural/decorative steel + windows: Drophouse
- Plaster: Sloan Montgomery
- Finish Carpentry: Enabler, LLC.
- Finish Carpentry: Nick Tragus
- Pavers: Arcon, Inc.
- Automation: Total Home Technology
- Painting: Kenny’s Painting
- Drywall: ZA Drywall
- Furniture and rug help from: Joel Mozersky Design
The specialty energy efficient glass punctuating the façade was provided by Panelite, whose founder is a close friend of Burton’s from his Columbia University days. And in a moment that seems almost poetic, Burton had the opportunity to obtain the Peter Gluck designed dining room table from the Floating Box House to serve as our conference table. He had managed its fabrication some 16 years ago.
While we have no intention of returning to our design/build roots, this was a truly amazing experience for us all, notwithstanding the surreal quality of completing it during the global pandemic.
At the end, we photographed with our close friend Casey Dunn, whose stunning photos will forever tie the completion of this project with its Covid 19 completion. With the waning of the pandemic, we have largely returned to work in our new office. But with a little more room to breathe.