The Midtown Collaborative Arts Yurt That Got Away

Here’s a scheme for the Independent Arts Collaborative building in Midtown that won’t get built. It’s one of at least 2 concepts developed for the block bounded by Main, Travis, Francis, and Holman streets by Morris Architects — the same firm that had earlier put together the first round of “initial concept drawings” for the IAC center, helping the fledgling arts organization sell the concept to city officials and local arts groups. What’s the big idea here? An inverted yurt. Filled with people and art. A garden and light on top. Like so:


Morris presented other concepts for the site as well, but lost out to a team quickly assembled from 2 other applicants: San Antonio’s Lake Flato Architects and Houston’s Studio Red. The IAC released early drawings documenting aspects of that team’s design last week.

Images: Morris Architects, via Swamplot inbox

10 Comment

  • I think that would add value to the Midtown area. We need to add some culture to the Midtown area. Midtown is a dead zone Monday thru Friday after 7pm. Even some of the restaurants will close after 5pm. Friday-Saturday we have some activity from the nightclubs and bars but mostly from people just looking to drink and party. Would be nice to have a spot where some adults can mingle.

  • @Texas,
    You need to explore our hood more. You’re sort of forgetting about The Ensemble Theatre, HCC, Julias, Luigis, Farragos, CoCos, Tafia, Continental Club, Mink, Breakfast Klub, Contemporary Craft, Lawndale, etc. This place is moving to Midtown because Midtown has matured to a point where artists and musicians are flocking to the neighborhood (I’m one of them).

  • Brb, gonna go google yurt

  • You really make a good point. I do need to explore the city more. Thanks so much for the places to go and visit. I really appreciate it.

  • Inverted yurt? More like a broken tent to me.

  • Brian,

    Glad to see Midtown on the rise. My wife and I moved there in 1999 and it was SKETCH! Glad we could lay the foundation.

    Contemporary Craft and Lawndale have been there for the long haul but don’t qualify as Midtown in my book.

  • Inverted yurt? Wouldn’t that be like a “bowl”?

  • texasrealitypro: Check out the galleries at Main and Isabella (Inman, Devin Borden, Art Palace, and Bryan Miller). They are mainly opening only during the day, but opening happen in the early evenings. And the openings are all about “adults mingling.”

    I think one reason the IAC was sited where it was is its proximity to already existing art and entertainment facilities, both commercial (the Isabella Court galleries, the Continental Club, etc.) and public (the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, Lawndale, The Ensemble Theater, etc.).

    The IAC will turn the whole stretch of Main from Rosedale to Francis into an Arts/Homeless Services district.

  • Robert thanks for the input… seriously I need to open up to this city. I always say im going to check something out then I don’t do it. This year its gotta change !! ahahahhaha… Thanks again. Add me on facebook my fellow art enthusiasts if you like. My name is Sonny Jimenez. Oh by the way check out my cousin Julie Zarate.. Tell me what you think about her art. I love it, but im NEW to art. Here is her link.