Texas Tech University

UrbanTech to Facilitate the American Institute of Architects' Sustainable Design Assessment Team

Amanda Bowman

September 24, 2018

The team will hold discussions, a town hall meeting and a public presentation to understand the economic and development potential of the Buddy Holly Hall for the Performing Arts and Sciences on downtown Lubbock.

Texas Tech University's UrbanTech Design Center, part of the College of Architecture (CoA), is facilitating the American Institute of Architects' (AIA) Sustainable Design Assessment Team (SDAT) Oct. 1-3.


SDAT is a community assistance program that focuses on the principles of sustainability. It brings teams of volunteer professionals together with community decision makers and stakeholders to help them develop a vision and framework for a sustainable future.

UrbanTech applied for and received the SDAT grant, which will focus on downtown Lubbock and the Buddy Holly Hall.

“SDAT will study the economic and developmental impact of the Buddy Holly Hall on the Cultural Arts District and downtown Lubbock,” said David Driskill, director of UrbanTech and an associate professor in the CoA. “Downtown Lubbock is the heart of the city. It is just big enough to where there could, and should, be more diverse living opportunities as well as shopping.”

SDAT will hold three community events during its three-day visit. On Monday (Oct. 1), there will be discussions from 12:30-2:45 p.m. at the Christine DeVitt Icehouse on the Louise Hopkins Underwood Center for the Arts' (LHUCA) campus at 511 Ave. K. The discussions will cover the following topics:

  • Market analysis/housing analysis and governance
  • Urban design, public realm and space, connectivity
  • Creative placemaking, cultural arts and identity

There also will be a town hall meeting from 6-7:30 p.m. at the Firehouse Theatre on the LHUCA campus, 511 Ave. K.

On Wednesday (Oct. 3), SDAT will hold a public presentation from 6-8 p.m. at the Firehouse Theatre on the LHUCA campus based on the feedback and information they receive from Monday's events.

All events are free and open to the public and media. If interested in attending one of the discussions on Monday, email Driskill at david.driskill@ttu.edu and include which topic you'd like to attend.

Visiting SDAT members are:

  • Michael Cheney, director of urban design for Groundswell Design Group, from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Abe Farkas, president of The Farkas Group, from Portland, Oregon
  • Mia Lehrer, founding principal of MLA Design, from Los Angeles, California
  • Cheryl Morgan, professor emerita of architecture in the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture at Auburn University
  • Michael Reed, founder of Mayer/Reed, from Portland
  • Rick Reinhard, chief administrative officer at General Board of Church and Society, from Washington, D.C.

The SDAT project was made possible by support from AIA Lubbock, the Lubbock Entertainment/Performing Arts Association, LHUCA, the city of Lubbock, UrbanTech and Texas Tech's CoA.

Sponsors include United Market Street, Alderson Cadillac, McPherson Cellars, Platform Restaurant, Prosperity Bank, D. Williams & Co. P.C., Williams & Co. Real Estate, Jane Henry Design, Tornado Gallery, Charles Adams Gallery and the Lubbock Economic Development Alliance.