Texas Barndominiums

Texas is famous for its wine farms and ranches. It has always been known as the land of the rancher, or the cowboy state. Due to its wide geographical size of 695, 662 square kilometers, Texas has broad lands for rodeos and farming. Farms here are quite big in number. They offer everything from meat, poultry, dairy produce, and organic crops that farmers planted and grew themselves. Farming here has no downtime, no holiday breaks, and on weekends. It is a year-round job for all the farmers in this state especially with unpredictable Texas weather and extreme summer heat.

Many Texas ranchers want to create space to meet the needs of the farm life but not everyone can afford to build their Texas dream house. Luckily, a new trend in housing is raising interest across Texas nowadays, where you can live comfortably and affordable.

Barndominium

Yes, you read it right. Barndominiums are popular nowadays because of the advantages it gives. A barndominium is a metal building with inside living quarters. Barndominium homes are affordable, have very low maintenance and are very energy efficient. It is a living space that makes use of vacant buildings. A barndominium can also, however, be built from scratch with custom designs and up-to-code construction materials. Barndominiums are simple types of the metal barn which has been upgraded, finished and furnished to serve as a comfortable home.

Why Barndominiums?

The barndominium craze started because people are looking for affordable housing options while living comfortably. In a lot of ways, the birth of barndominiums has helped fill a critical gap which opened up in the home design market. Below are some reasons why you can choose a barndominium for your next home in Texas.

  • Barndominiums give you the freedom to fit in any property

The decision is yours to make. You can choose to live in a massive, sprawling estate if you want. If you prefer something small and cozy, you can have it, too. This is one of the major benefits that a barndominium can give you. This type of house is ideal for families which need more space and privacy.

  • Barndominiums can serve multiple functions

Barndominiums can prove this. The layout can be personalized so that part of the structure is given over to living quarters, but other sections can be converted to fill other purposes. If you are a ranch owner in Texas, this is the best option since you can end up using part of your barndominium as your living quarter and allow a section for your farm needs.

  • Barndominiums are cost-efficient

In general, it is cheaper to build a barn home from the ground up than it does to build a traditional home. This is one of the big appeals of going with a barndominium. Prices can vary quite a bit depending on the builder you choose, the features you select, the square footage, the materials, the finishing options, and more.

  • Barndominiums require less maintenance

Since barndominiums are made of metal, you can expect it to have the characteristics of the metal. Barndominiums, unlike houses made of wood, are durable and can withstand any strong winds and heavy snow. They also require less maintenance which in turn, helps you save money.

 

The Coolest Buildings in Texas

Geographically speaking, Texas is larger than Germany, England, Scotland, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Belgium and the Netherlands combined. It is the second largest and second most populous state in the south in the United States of America. It is popularly known as the “The Lone Star State” to signify its former status as an independent republic, and as a reminder of the state’s struggle for independence from Mexico. Texas is so big and has diverse landscape ranges from desert badlands and swimmable coastlines to green mountains and sprawling prairies.

You can find all kinds of country culture in this beautiful state- from rodeos, line-dancing, and opportunities for an adventure. Whatever you love, it lives here. You can try different things while staying in Texas. It has a lot of beautiful beaches, golf places, historical places, and sports recreational activities. If you are a food enthusiast, you should never miss their famous barbeque. Texas is known for their plates of ribs or brisket served with generous Texas home-style side dishes. The famous Franklin Barbeque in Austin have a long queue of customers waiting every day, and they don’t seem to mind.

The Great Architecture behind Texas

Texas is also home to some of the great architectural buildings in the world. If you are into culture and arts, then Texas is a must visit place for you. Whether the building was built in the 1700’s or it’s a new sustainable building construction, Texas can be your architectural friend.

Coolest Buildings in Texas

Below are some of the coolest buildings in Texas which might give you the reason to visit this wonderful state. This list is in no particular order and by all means, you can visit them all.

  1. Texas Capitol Building

The Texas Capitol building is taller than the United States Capitol. It is the sixth tallest state capitol building in the world. The construction of this building started way back in the late 1800s and a 75 million dollar underground extension was added in 1993. This building is a must-see when traveling in Texas.

  1. Mission San Jose

Mission San Jose is popularly known as “the Queen” of all the San Antonio Missions. It was once the heart of a thriving Spanish community established in the early 1700s when the church’s beauty attracted from all over the world. A lot of tourists flock to San Antonio just to see this gem.

  1. Frost Bank Tower

The Frost Bank Tower in Austin also known as Owlbert Frost is a skyscraper in Austin Texas. It is the third tallest building in Austin. It was developed by Cousins Properties from November 2001 to December 2003 as a class A office building. This building is quite famous because it is one of the few high-rise buildings that was constructed after the 9/11 attacks. The building was officially dedicated in January 2004.

  1. Reunion Tower

The Reunion Tower in Dallas was built in 1978 and now stands out as the most prominent building in the city. At the top of the building is a globe that holds 259 custom LED lights. This building is famous for those LED lights that illuminate with different colors and patterns. They brighten up the sky with the different lights emitted by them. The LED lights are often used to mark a special event or holiday.

  1. Kimbell Art Museum

If you are into historical facts and figures, then Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, Texas is a must-visit place for you. This museum uses natural light to properly exhibit the works of art, as intended by Architect Louis Kahn who designed the museum. It hosts an art collection as well as traveling art exhibitions, educational programs, and an extensive research library. Visiting this place will awake the bookworm in you.

  1. The Bishop’s Palace

The Bishop’s Palace is one of the most beautiful homes in Galveston. It was built in the early 1890’s for local lawyer Walter Gresham and his wife Josephine Gresham. This house has withstood several hurricanes and weather disturbances. You can take private tours of this place and admire everything about this magnificent home. This place is famous for its stained glass and intricate carvings made when the house was first built.

 

 

Shopping Malls in San Antonio, Texas

Texas is not just home to historically beautiful buildings. It also houses some of the largest and most luxurious shopping malls in the world. In San Antonio, you will find hundreds of retail shops, galleries, boutiques, outlets, and shopping malls. The best time to go on a shopping here is at the end of November, or at the beginning of December when most stores and malls offer huge discounts during the end of season sale. Black Friday is said to be the day when you can find the best sales in the stores in the United States.

Indoor Malls

San Antonio boasts a comfortable shopping experience with its indoor malls. With complete air conditioning and many other amenities, these malls offer everything you need.

  • Rivercenter Mall

This mall is located right in the heart of San Antonio next to River Walk and the Alamo. It offers a variety of retail shops and specialty stores with lots of goods. This mall has a lively and festive atmosphere because of its good location.

  • Crossroads Mall

This mall features 50 specialty stores and national anchor stores. It has Hobby Lobby which carries home design accessories and a Super Target Store.

  • North Star Mall

This mall is located near the San Antonio International Airport. It is a locally acclaimed mall with Texan touch of architecture. It includes a giant pair of boots which can be even seen from a distance. If you wish to take a break from shopping, this mall has a convenient food court on the top floor.

Open-Air Malls

San Antonio also has open-air malls to cater to more people in the area.

  • The Shops at La Cantera

The Shops is one of San Antonio’s newest and most exclusive malls located in a residential area called La Cantera. This beautiful mall includes tranquil surroundings of lush greenery and open-air walkways.

Steel Thinking of a Building Construction in Texas?

If you have visited Texas, you already have an idea of how rich its historical architecture is. You can find every type of building here- from century-old ones to newly constructed ones. Texas offers a lot of history from its buildings. These buildings are made from different kinds of materials which make them beautiful and stunning as they are.

Now, if you want to construct a building in Texas, you need to have the best materials. You need to be sure that the building you will construct is durable and can endure many natural phenomenon.

In this case, why don’t you try using steel as a framework for your building framework? Steel buildings in Texas are popular nowadays because of the amazing advantages that steel gives. Structural steel isn’t just for skyscrapers, large agricultural buildings and garages. You can use steel in any aspect of a building or house construction.

Characteristics of Steel

Then why should you use steel in constructing a building in Texas? Here are some of the reasons.

  • Steel is lighter than wood

It may be a bit shocking at first, but this premise is true when it comes to construction. One kilogram of wood may weigh less than one kilogram of steel, but that is because of the dense character of steel. However, when it comes to framing, the design of a steel L-beam will almost always cause it to be lighter than the lightest, structurally sound wood beam design. In addition to decreasing the labor required to build with steel, the weight advantage reduces materials shipping costs and can simplify the design of a building’s foundation and other structural support systems, which can further reduce project budgets.

  • Steel can help you build faster

Choosing steel can help you finish your project faster. This is because some steel parts are pre-engineered to a specific design inside the manufacturing plant and are shipped out. That means when they arrive at the project site, they are ready to be erected. This speeds up construction time significantly, making it possible to complete large-scale projects in a matter of weeks.

  • Steel is durable

We all know how durable steel is. Due to this characteristic, it requires little maintenance and is a more economic and sound choice for building construction. Maintenance fees, repairs and replacement are minimal. Due to a steel structure’s almost unrivalled ability to withstand strong winds, heavy snow fire and seismic activities, combined with its resistance to pests and decay, insurance companies often offer lower premiums on policies underwritten for metal buildings.

  • Steel is versatile

Along with its durability, steel is also very versatile. From the ability for structural steel to be molded into virtually any shape and size to its exterior ability to yield roofing patterns and wood-like siding. This same characteristic is also what allows for the versatile design of large, clear span buildings such as airplane hangars, warehouses, agricultural buildings and indoor arenas. It also paved the way to the construction of skyscraper buildings found in Texas and all over the world.

Finding an Apartment in Houston, Texas

architect design

Houston is a large metropolis in Texas, extending to Galveston Bay. It has a population of roughly million. If you want to live here, looking for an apartment can be a tough task because of its geographical size.

Houston is a popular place for new college graduates based on cost of living, availability of rental properties, annual wages, and unemployment rate. So how do you start your search for an apartment here in Houston?

How to find your perfect apartment

  • Take into consideration your lifestyle and habits

Houston is a big metro so finding an apartment can be hard. You can narrow your search by considering your lifestyle and habits. For example, families might be interested in top school districts, so you can first start your search for schools then the neighborhoods around your chosen school.

  • Research first about the different neighborhoods

With the power of the internet today, everything is accessible. With just a single click, a lot of information about a certain place can be accessed. Compare and contrast the different neighborhoods. Look for information regarding different facilities such as schools, churches, hospitals, markets, malls and more. Living in a place near these facilities will be convenient for you and your family.

  • Use online sites and apps

There are a number of online sites to help with your Houston apartment search. There are even some apps that offer interactive maps which can show areas of Houston that fits your needs. The power of technology is beyond imagination and you can utilize it to find your perfect Houston apartment.

Job growth in Houston has been strong and continues to grow even with some economic problems. College graduates love Houston because the city offers good-paying jobs and living in Houston is not that expensive compared to its neighboring cities.

All about Turnkey Construction

Texas is home to some of the great architectural buildings in the world. Some of these are the State Capitol Building, Mission San Jose, Frost Bank Tower, Reunion Tower, Kimbell Art Museum and many more. These building were built as early as the 1700’s and are considered as treasures of the world.

Now there is a new kind of building construction in Texas that is getting famous nowadays. This method of construction makes the building process easy for customers.

Turnkey construction

Turnkey refers to a product that is completely completed when sold. A turnkey construction contract is where the price is fixed at the same time the contract is signed. As a result, the construction company is held responsible for any excess in the budget. Turnkey construction contracts reduce the amount of risk to the buyer and increases the amount of incentives for the company offering the contract.

How it is done

If you are interested in a turnkey construction around Texas, you have to find first a builder and talk to them about your vision. Once you relayed to them the specifications you want for your steel building, they can offer you an agreement. Afterwards, your builder can get started on the plans and then the construction. Once completed, your builder will turnover your completed new steel building to you.

Benefits of Turnkey Construction

  • Turnkey construction gives you money savings

Construction loans can have higher rates than typical loans. Now you have the freedom to spend your money on other building details or a new building perhaps. Most reputable contractors will give you the best pricing and the best quality of work.

  • Turnkey construction saves you more time

You can work on other things outside of this structure and just wait for your contractor to turn over your finished structure to you. In this way, you can save time and still be assured that the steel building is of high quality and durable.

  • Turnkey construction has smooth scalability

The use of technology to adapt to changes helps ramp up the level of productivity with respect to a particular project. This ties in with both the coordination and communication processes. That’s because one of the ways that make turnkey construction beneficial is that easy access to the multitude of subcontractors involved helps keep everyone in the loop.

  • Turnkey construction provides a steady flow of communication

Within the turnkey framework, such concerns dissipate because of the easy availability of select personnel. This allows for the peace of mind that arrives by knowing that the turnkey construction that follows will be the vision of the company and not the builder.

  • Turnkey construction shows clear coordination

The turnkey model is specifically set up to put all of the components required in the hands of experienced professionals that know how to check all the boxes necessary. This avoids the glitches that have a way of grinding projects to a halt.

Many construction companies in Texas are offering turnkey construction. You can just review the portfolio of each company to see which one is the best fit for your construction needs.

Building a House in San Antonio, Texas

house with pool nice view

Texas can be your next home. This state is known for its long summer, warm fall, mild winter and generally fruitful spring. With this kind of weather, there is no shortage of produce all year round for the urban and rural farms here. Texas is located in the south of the United States. It is so big and has diverse landscape ranges from desert badlands and swimmable coastlines to green mountains and sprawling prairies. Due to its lush, green and naturally beautiful landscapes, it has lots of farms scattered in all places. Farming is one of the sources of living especially in urban areas.

Now planning to have a home located in Texas can be a tough task. You have a lot of things to consider. However, Texas is beautiful as it is so a home in Texas is also a good idea.

Things to keep in mind

  • There are different kinds of architectural styles in every region of Texas

You should know that every region in this place embraces different architectural styles. Houston and Dallas are both much traditional than Austin or even West Texas. You will see here that locals love steep roofs, red bricks, and dramatic staircases. It means that for an all red brick Colonial house plan would work well in Houston, while a modern farmhouse home plan will not. In the Texas Hill Country, you are going to find a lot more casual and more modern work. Austin has a lot of edgy modern work and a very little traditional.

  • Always remember to know the rules and regulations for building a home in your area

Do not just go buying a house and remodeling it according to your plan. There are certain rules and regulations that authorities impose so you must be aware of them. The “McMansion Ordinance”, is a nickname given for a particular set of building regulations within parts of Austin. Putting this simply, you cannot build a ginormous mansion beside your neighbor’s tiny bungalow. You have to calculate the amount of cover for the entire land and submit that to the authorities. It also needs to fit within the requirements. A part of the requirement is called floor to area ration, which is the square footage of the house compared with the square footage of the lot.

  • Austin can be an expensive place to live in

If you can afford it, then give it a shot. Austin is an area in Texas where property values soar. However, it is an amazing, vibrant city with all kinds of good amenities.

  • Basements are a big No-No in Texas

If you dig about 6 inches below, there’s the rock, and it’s a solid limestone. It requires heavy equipment to get it out. So a basement is not a good idea if you decide to build a home in Texas. If you do, limestone can just cause you problems because water shoots through it horizontally with a lot of hydrostatic pressure. Therefore, if you build a basement in Texas, you will be forcing your basement’s walls to withstand a higher-than-normal amount of water pressure.

  • Select a professional, pre-drawn house, then customize it

Choose a house plan drawn by a veteran, professional builder and designer. People may have different priorities especially in big families. Every member of your home wants to create an adobe of their own choice. Choosing a professional home builder will be the most convenient and reasonable option for you. Professionals take your own requirement and offer great advice to create your beautiful house. You don’t have to worry about the construction material, sketching of property, architecture, blueprint and labor work. Your home builder will take care of that for you.

  • Build or Remodel

It is also important to know if you want to build or remodel. Ask yourself if you are comfortable with the average construction costs for the type of house you want. Set your requirements for the specific number of bedrooms, bathrooms, etc. If you are thinking of a remodeling, check your budget. If it meets the reconfiguring you want, then go for it. Take into consideration the details you want for your remodeling, and if it needs to be taken down to the studs. This is important so that you can set realistic goals for the kind of house you want.

 

Buildings in Houston, Texas

Buildings in Houston include a variety of award-winning and historic architecture. If you are a tourist exploring Houston, visiting some of its famous buildings is a must.

Skyscrapers in Houston, Texas

  • Hilton Houston Post Oak

The twin towers of this hotel are joined by a spacious lobby with a curved glass ceiling that by day lights up the entire space. In 2005, this hotel was renovated to reflect a more contemporary style that mirrors the original design of the building. The architects behind this skyscraper are the famous I. M. Pei & Partners

  • JPMorgan Chase Tower

Excluding radio towers, this is the tallest structure in the state. It contains 75 floors and is located at 600 Travis Street in Downtown Houston, Texas.  The tower was built between 1979 and 1981 as the Texas Commerce Tower. When it was completed, it was also considered the tallest granite-clad building in the world. The architects behind this skyscraper are the famous I. M. Pei & Partners. JPMorgan is a 305.4-meter skyscraper and a five-sided office tower clad in pale gray polished granite. Originally planned for 80 stores tall, the tower was shortened at the order of the Federal Aviation Administration.

  • Rice Hotel

This hotel was built in 1912. It serves as an apartment building known as the Rice Lofts, designed by Page Southerland.

  • Shamrock Hotel

It is an 18-story building with a green tile pitched roof. It is located in a suburban area three miles southwest of downtown Houston on the fringes of the countryside.

 

 

The Oldest Building in Texas

Texas is one of the richest states when it comes to history. It has a lot of history to offer. The student in you would want to know the rich culture surrounding this state and the great architecture behind the buildings in this place. The architectural designs of the buildings in Texas will leave your eyes in awe. In the end, you will be asking yourself how these beautiful buildings were built and kept throughout the years.

There are a lot of buildings in Texas, from skyscrapers to bungalow ones. But do you know what the oldest building standing in this lone star state is? This building was built centuries ago and is considered as one of the national treasures of Texas. This place is usually included in the itinerary of tourists visiting Texas. Keep reading to know the building that started it all and yet, still standing up to this present day.

Mission San Juan Capistrano

Mission San Juan Capistrano was founded in 1731 by the Spanish Catholics of the Franciscan Order. It is located at 901 Graf Road, San Antonio, Texas. It is one of the many missions in the whole of Texas. However, this mission is the first and the oldest. It was originally founded in east Texas, near the current city of Cushing. It was first known as Mission San Jose de los Nazonis.

The first primitive chapel was built out of brush, straw, and mud. By the year 1756, the structure had been replaced by a long, low adobe building, with a bell tower (campanile) at one end. A larger building was started in 1760, but it was never completed due to lack of financial funds.

Sadly, the mission didn’t prosper also due to lack of sufficient and. At its height, the mission owned about 1,000 head of cattle, 100 horses and some 3,500 goats, it supported about 265 neophytes. San Juan Capistrano was administered by the College of Santa Cruz de Queretaro until March 1773, when it was placed under the care of College of Nuestra Senora de Guadalupe de Zacatecas.

Renovation of the Mission

Mission San Jose Capistrano had its renovation in 2012. The budget for its renovation amounted to $2.2 million. The shifting clay soil beneath the building had caused severe cracks and falling plaster. A pier-and-beam foundation was added that extends around the perimeter and as far as 29 feet deep into the ground. This allowed buttresses placed against walls in the mid-20th century to be removed. Eggshell white color lime plaster now covers the exterior in contrast to its longstanding dark, weathered look.

The Farm at Mission San Juan

In partnership with the San Antonio Food Bank, San Antonio Missions NHP includes a living demonstration farm at Mission San Juan Capistrano. This demonstration farm is fed and shows visitors what the laborers surrounding the Mission would have looked like. To visit the farm at Mission San Juan, you need to cross the mission compound and take the trail to the southwest of the mission.

Getting up after Hurricane “Harvey”

minimalistic house with architectural structure

Who could ever forget the devastating hurricane that wreaked havoc all over Texas in 2017? This hurricane is named Harvey. This powerful hurricane is tied with 2005’s Hurricane Katrina and is the costliest tropical cyclone on record, inflicting $125 billion in damage particularly from catastrophic rainfall-triggered flooding in the Houston metropolitan area and Southeast Texas. It was the first major hurricane to make landfall in the United States since Wilma in 2005, ending a record 12-year span in which no hurricanes made landfall at the intensity of a major hurricane throughout the country.

History of “Harvey” in Meteorology

This hurricane originated from a westward-moving tropical wave that emerged from Africa over the eastern Atlantic Ocean on August 12, 2017. Maintaining its brisk westward motion, the system strengthened slightly and became a tropical storm later that day, at which it was given the name Harvey. With maximum sustained winds of 45 mph, Harvey made landfalls in Barbados and St. Vincent on August 18 before entering the Caribbean Sea. After becoming a hurricane on August 24, Harvey continued to quickly strengthen over the next day, ultimately reaching peak intensity as a Category 4 hurricane.

Aftermath of the Hurricane

Approximately 32,000 people were displaced in shelters across the state by August 31. Analysts estimated the total economic cost of the storm at $81 billion to $108 billion or more. Most of the economic losses are damage to homes and commercial property.

Texas is building back better after Harvey

The default response after a major disaster is often to rebuild as quickly as possible. This typically means replicating what existed before the storm. Communities were urged to consider short and long-term health impacts of their recovery decisions, known as “health in all policies”, approach to recover. This approach recognizes that health is connected to many other issues, including transportation, social networks and housing. By thinking about the health impacts of recovery strategies, municipal leaders can rebuild in a way that promotes stronger and more resilient communities.

The idea of incorporating health in all policies may sound sensible but putting it into action after a hurricane is easier said than done. Communities are under political and social pressure to recover quickly and health may not be at the top of their priorities. Advance planning for recovery is important and involving people who understand challenges to community health and well-being is essential. Local health departments, as well as community and faith-based organization are often connected to at-risk populations. Involving these organizations in recovery planning and implementation can inform an approach that promotes community health and well-being.

Many areas are still recovering after this powerful hurricane that devastated this area. What is important is they know how to pick themselves up after that strong weather disturbance. We all know that we can’t control the weather. Science can only estimate the strength and all we can do is to prepare. That’s why it is important to have an emergency plan ahead to avoid severe damage as possible.