I believe architecture is all about building. Talking and drawing is cheap. The proof is in the built product and in its interaction with the people who inhabit it. I practiced architecture from 1982 to 1999 under my own firm, Lawrence W. Speck Associates. During the last ten years of that period, I did many projects in association with the much larger firm, PageSoutherlandPage. In 1999 I joined PageSoutherlandPage as a principal and have practiced architecture with them since then.

Austin Bergstrom International Airport in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Austin Bergstrom International Airport

Local materials and iconography, a sense of openness, and a relaxed, informal character embrace Austin’s unique culture and heritage at the Barbara Jordan Passenger Terminal. The crescent-shaped terminal organization is simple and direct, providing easy orientation and minimal walking distance from curbside to gate. The plan maximizes visibility for concessions by creating a large central…

Austin Convention Center in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Austin Convention Center

The Austin Convention Center integrates harmoniously into the fabric of the city. Building circulation and smaller-scaled programmatic elements surround the large exhibition spaces, enlivening the streetscape. Lobbies, meeting rooms and pre-function spaces are designed individually with scale, proportion, color, material and character representative of the city and region. Green design figures…

Austin Convention Center Expansion in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Austin Convention Center Expansion

In the Austin Convention Center's 400,000-square-foot expansion, reception halls, meeting rooms, pre-function spaces and circulation towers are expressed as individual elements joined by entries, porches and terraces. The design creates an appropriate scale along pedestrian-oriented street, with larger volumes of the exhibition halls and ballrooms tucked behind. The various concourses culminate…

Chickasaw Nation Medical Center in Ada, Oklahoma by architect Larry Speck

Chickasaw Nation Medical Center

The Chickasaw Nation Medical Center connects with nature to provide a nurturing healthcare environment for Native Americans living in southeastern Oklahoma. The architecture maximizes access and views to the pristine, 230-acre site while inviting daylight into the buildings. Patient units are directly oriented to the creek and trees, with traditional hospital "front" and "back" elements tucked…

Discovery Green in Houston, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Discovery Green

Discovery Green returns 12 acres of mostly paved lots to a natural green space in the heart of downtown Houston. A core of outdoor activity near the convention center, ballpark and arena, the park also provides a central focus for new development. Larry Speck led the design of the park's architecture, creating a model of sustainability. Two restaurants and a park administration building feature…

U.S. Federal Courthouse in Alpine, Texas by architect Larry Speck

U.S. Federal Courthouse

The Alpine Federal Courthouse is a simple, solid response to the extraordinary qualities of the local Texas landscape, the West Texas climate and the specific mission of its occupants. The powerful Trans-Pecos terrain dominates the experience of this locale. The building's materials―primarily russet-colored, dry-stacked West Texas sandstone―link the building to the larger landscape as well as…

General Services Administration Field Office in Houston, Texas by architect Larry Speck

General Services Administration Field Office

The FBI's recently opened 275,000-square-foot field office integrates concerns for security, sustainability, and appropriate image into a thoroughly synthesized design solution. A lightweight metal frame is hung from powerful concrete walls to carry a “second skin” for the building. Heavily fritted, laminated glass attaches to the lightweight frame with stainless steel clips. The almost opaque…

Seton Medical Center Expansion in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Seton Medical Center Expansion

The expansion of Seton Medical Center creates a new “front door” image for a dated 1970s hospital, adding a day surgery, entry and chapel. Glass and light provide a sense of precision and technological sophistication alongside a certain softness and elusiveness--appropriate for a building where modern medicine deals with both scientific exactness and human frailty. A long volume faced with…

East Avenue Master Plan in Austin, TX by architect Larry Speck

East Avenue Master Plan

Master planning East Avenue, a 23-acre, mixed-use development, involved more than 80 meetings with stakeholders over the course of a year. The site, an ideal location for increasing density near Austin’s urban core, became available when a small college relocated. The East Avenue community will re-inhabit the site with moderate-income rental housing, condominiums, retail, medical offices, a…

Austin City Lofts in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Austin City Lofts

Austin City Lofts is an 82-unit, 14-story tower anchoring a new mixed-use district in the southwest quadrant of downtown Austin. Along busy 5th Street, a three-story horizontal stone volume houses the entry lobby, deep stacked porches and a modest retail strip off a shady arcade. Parking for 150 vehicles is tucked behind and below. A generous outdoor living area, including garden, pool and…

Computer Sciences Corporation in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Computer Sciences Corporation

The twin CSC buildings on Lady Bird Lake in downtown Austin occupy a critical site in the revitalization of the city’s core. They emphasize the longstanding role of office buildings as “fabric” in the urban environment and draw their architectural character from urban design goals. The buildings each encompass 350,000 square feet, creating an appropriately scaled edge to the lake and parkland,…

Waterstone Condominium Development in Lago Vista, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Waterstone Condominium Development

Site characteristics and the desire to create an unusual merger of landscape and living drive the design of Waterstone, a collection of 71 condominiums on Lake Travis.  Replacing a subdivision originally planned for low-density, single-family homes, the development inhabits the landscape with minimum intrusiveness while offering the privacy and convenience of single-family homes.  The structures…

AMLI on 2nd Mixed-Use Development in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

AMLI on 2nd Mixed-Use Development

AMLI's first urban high-rise is a vital force in downtown Austin's rapidly developing 2nd Street Retail District. The 18-story, three-star-green building integrates 17 floors of apartments, 35,000 square feet of ground level retail, a spacious amenity deck and 4 1/2 levels of above-ground parking. The building image is contemporary, clean, and responsive to its urban context. Anodized aluminum…

Mixed-Use Project for Christ Church Cathedral in Houston, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Mixed-Use Project for Christ Church Cathedral

The expansion of the Christ Church Cathedral campus solidifies the congregation’s vision as the “church for downtown” while responding to its neighborhood. Four diverse program elements are carefully arranged on a full city block adjacent to the historic sanctuary. Central offices for the the Bishop and Diocese occupy an elegant, glass, two-story building enclosed in wood trellises. A…

Trinity Episcopal School in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Trinity Episcopal School

Trinity Episcopal School, a K-6 school, occupies a heavily wooded site in a densely developed, Austin commercial district.  The master plan clusters individual buildings around a well-defined mall and plaza lined by two-story colonnades, allowing much of the beautiful site to remain a nature preserve.  Building B, the first construction under the master plan, initiates the colonnade and anchors…

Oklahoma State University Alumni Center in Stillwater, Oklahoma by architect Larry Speck

Oklahoma State University Alumni Center

Positioned at the entry to the OSU campus, next to the university's most historic building, the new Alumni Center provides a welcoming hub for visiting alumni.  While the brick exterior makes the building a good neighbor at the heart of a cohesive, red-brick campus, appropriate massing and scale help create a genuine sense of place.  Broad arcades add a unique and active feature to the campus…

House on Turtle Creek in Dallas, Texas by architect Larry Speck

House on Turtle Creek

The House on Turtle Creek is a thorough renovation and addition to 1970s house originally designed by noted Dallas architect Bud Oglesby. The project became a kind of collaboration with Bud via the bones that he left for the house. Both ends of the structure, which were severely deteriorated, were removed; the house now opens up to extraordinary views of Turtle Creek and the Dallas Country Club.…

The Grove in Houston, Texas by architect Larry Speck

The Grove

The Grove is set prominently within Discovery Green park, Houston's new 12-acre urban oasis.  The restaurant architecture takes inspiration from a magnificent, double row of live oak trees that have long inhabited the site.  Indoor and outdoor dining spaces are strung long and thin, just to the south of the oak alley.  Each room has a slightly different vista into the tree canopy, through huge…

Driscoll Children's Hospital Pediatric Sub-Specialty Clinics in Brownsville, McAllen by architect Larry Speck

Driscoll Children’s Hospital Pediatric Sub-Specialty Clinics

Two new signature pediatric facilities in Texas' Rio Grande Valley reinforce the Driscoll Children's Hospital brand while embracing the culture of their communities.  Each features a colorful, porch element that is easy to identify and open to the street.  The main circulation system extends the inviting facade with waiting areas and playscapes for children.    Clinical zones are organized in…

Robert E. Johnson Legislative Office Building in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Robert E. Johnson Legislative Office Building

Located in the shadows of the Texas State Capitol building in central Austin, the Robert E. Johnson Legislative Office Building stands as a symbol of contemporary state government and the agencies that inhabit it.  The design creates a dignified but accessible place, emblematic of open, participatory government and welcoming to constituents and the general public. Conceived as a sustainability…

Rough Creek Lodge in Glen Rose, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Rough Creek Lodge

Positioned on a high ridge with commanding views of a lake, mature live oaks and the rounded peak of Chalk Mountain, Rough Creek Lodge is the focus of an 11,000-acre ranch in the Texas Hill Country. The buildings sit long and low, hugging the contours of the hill and nestling into existing trees to form a continuous mass of natural and manmade forms that rim the brow of the promontory. Public…

Concrete House in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Concrete House

Poor soil conditions on a spectacular site required a heroic foundation with few drilled piers and deep foundation beams.  This, combined with the steep slope, gorgeous views, and abundant existing trees, dictated a long, thin rectangular footprint and a simple concrete volume to span between the piers.  All of the major rooms, which look out to the trees or above them to downtown Austin, are…

Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum

Umlauf Sculpture Garden features the work of American sculptor Charles Umlauf in a naturally landscaped garden at the edge of Zilker Park.  Larry Speck designed the museum and visitors center, which contribute to a beloved, public gathering space in the heart of Austin.  The building expression is quiet and understated.  A long, thin, stone structure houses visitor support functions, creating a…

House on Sunny Slope in Austin, Texas by architect Larry Speck

House on Sunny Slope

The House on Sunny Slope is designed for informal family living, commissioned by a single father with two young sons.  The primary yard is placed in the front, surrounded by a wall, to maximize private outdoor space on a small lot.  The carport doubles as an outdoor game room/entertainment space, strongly oriented to the yard.  Inside, a dominant room with 18-inch exposed stone walls houses…

Wimberley Ranch House in Wimberley, Texas by architect Larry Speck

Wimberley Ranch House

The Wimberley Ranch House is positioned atop a bluff above the Blanco River on a large cattle and horse ranch. In the tradition of Texas ranch buildings, the design is an aggregation of individual elements that are freely adapted to their function and location. Independent forms are loosely collected around an existing, bowl-shaped draw, which directs views up and down the river and to the…