Erma Center

Location: Riviera, Texas

Specifies: 11,000 Square Feet Interior, 7,000 Square Feet Covered Exterior Space  

Status: Under Constrction

Inspired by family and a passion for collecting cactus, Erma Colston near-single-handedly brought the Riviera Telephone Company back from the brink of bankruptcy in the 1940s.  The Erma Center, like its namesake, is intended to be a pilar of the community of Riviera.  The facility will host school events and event overflow from the adjacent campus.  The facility will also be available for local community events and will be a leasable venue for visiting events.  Design features include:

Structural brick mass walls reminiscent of the historic hollow clay tile buildings common to this area of South Texas.

Building volume and mass relates independently to residential homes on the south side and a commercial office building on the north side.

Large north facing windows and fully shaded south facing windows optimize daylighting.

Fritted glazing at banquet room tall windows controls views of the adjacent office building to the north.

A side-lit herringbone pattern of suspended felt acoustic panels creates a floating ‘lamp shade’ effect cutting off views of exposed structure and mechanical systems at the banquet room.

The banquet room houses a recessed hydraulic stage that is available at the touch of a button through the automated building controls.

The stand-alone bar building is a concrete addition to a small historic brick phone company storage building that housed the original touch-tone central switchboard for the area.

Site and rooftop utility vision screens are composed of phenolic slats interwoven into a galvanized steel frame.

South-Texas appropriate drought tolerant landscape is irrigated from a 13,000 gallon rainwater capture tank.

Parking is shared with the adjacent school to minimize overall hardscape footprint.