flexiblefullpage -
billboard - default
interstitial1 - interstitial
Currently Reading

First Ismaili Center in the U.S. combines Islamic design with Texas influences

Building Team

First Ismaili Center in the U.S. combines Islamic design with Texas influences

Project includes 11 acres of gardens, courtyards, terraces, and a five-story, tripartite building.


By Peter Fabris, Contributing Editor | July 25, 2022
Ismaili Center Houston ext
Design courtesy of FMA Building and NBW Garden

Construction has begun on the first Ismaili Center in the U.S. in Houston. The facility will serve Ismaili Muslims in and around Houston, which has the largest concentration of Ismaili Muslims in the United States with over 40,000 members.

The Ismaili Center will consist of 11 acres of gardens, courtyards, and terraces and a 150,000 sf, five-story, tripartite building featuring three eivans, or elevated open terraces. The building will include a main atrium, interior courtyards open to the sky, a prayer room or jamatkhana, library, social hall, exhibit hall, council chamber, black box theatre, classrooms, administrative offices, and a café and kitchen for catering events. The center also features a 155,000 sf, 600-car garage beneath the gardens.

Details reflect Islamic design and its historically rooted, rich architectural heritage, combined with Western design that fits Houston’s climate. The building’s exterior is made of matte, sand-colored marble, crafted to create a clean patchwork of tessellated patterns. Ultra-high-performance concrete panels from Monterrey, Mexico compose the atrium, while light-colored stone from Turkey mimics the look of Texas limestone.

Perforated concrete with German glass glazing behind it allows natural light to pour in while keeping the building cool. The building will glow at night, lit from within. All concrete on the project, including sidewalks, feature custom finishes.

The center’s prayer hall, measuring 115 by 115 feet, features a perforated metal ceiling, with three layers of millwork along the walls. The lobby has board form walls, where custom-cut strips of wood are installed at 29-degree angles to create a unique pattern. The eivans are supported by 49 star-shaped columns, the tallest of which is 50 feet.

The design had sustainability in mind and the owners will seek LEED Gold certification. The campus is located adjacent to the Buffalo Bayou and within a flood zone. The building itself is above the flood plain, and the privacy wall that surrounds the gardens allows water in to mitigate flooding in the surrounding area. Landscaping is designed to withstand a flood, and native plants in the garden will work to filter stormwater.

The project is using a 3-D model to ensure each part of the construction process is well coordinated, and a robotic total station created the layout of the jobsite, removing user error and ensuring that all aspects of the site are accurate, according to a news release. McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. broke ground on the project in October 2021, with completion expected in the fourth quarter of 2024.

On the building team:
Owner and/or developer: Ismaili/Ismaili Council for the United States
Design architect: Farshid Moussavi Architecture, collaborating with DLR Group
Architect of record: DLR Group, gardens are designed by Nelson Byrd Woltz Landscape Architects
MEP engineer: DLR Group
Structural engineer: DLR Group, collaborating with AKT II Engineers
General contractor/construction manager: McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. (Houston office)

Ismaili Center ext 2
Design courtesy of FMA Building and NBW Garden

 

Related Stories

Hotel Facilities | Nov 8, 2022

6 hotel design trends for 2022-2023

Personalization of the hotel guest experience shapes new construction and renovation, say architects and construction experts in this sector.

Resiliency | Nov 8, 2022

Oregon wildfire risk law prompts extensive backlash from property owners

A bipartisan bill aimed at protecting property owners from wildfires that was passed by the Oregon legislature has prompted a strong backlash.

Building Team | Nov 7, 2022

U.S. commercial buildings decreased energy use intensity from 2012 to 2018

The recently released 2018 Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS) by the U.S. Energy Information Administration found that the total floorspace in commercial buildings has increased but energy consumption has not, compared with the last survey analyzing the landscape in 2012.

| Nov 7, 2022

Mixed-use tower in China features world’s highest outdoor pool

Guangxi China Resources Tower, a new 403-meter-tall (1,322 feet) skyscraper in Nanning, China features the world’s highest outdoor pool—at 323 meters (1,060 feet) above grade.

Building Team | Nov 3, 2022

More than half of U.S. contractors say finding skilled workers is big barrier to their growth

More than half of U.S. contractors (55%) say finding enough skilled workers is one of the biggest barriers to growing their business, according to a DEWALT Powering the Future Survey.

Codes and Standards | Nov 2, 2022

New York City construction official wants to boost design-build

The new associate commissioner of alternative delivery in New York City’s Department of Design and Construction aims to encourage more design-build project delivery in the city.

University Buildings | Nov 2, 2022

New Univ. of Calif. Riverside business school building will support hybrid learning

  A design-build partnership of Moore Ruble Yudell and McCarthy Building Companies will collaborate on a new business school building at the University of California at Riverside.

Building Team | Nov 1, 2022

Nonresidential construction spending increases slightly in September, says ABC

National nonresidential construction spending was up by 0.5% in September, according to an Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of data published today by the U.S. Census Bureau.

| Nov 1, 2022

Updated Florida building codes helped newer homes withstand Hurricane Ian

Newer homes seemed to fare much better than older structures during Hurricane Ian, suggesting that updated Florida building codes made a difference.

Wood | Nov 1, 2022

A European manufacturer says its engineered wood products can store carbon for decades

  Metsä Wood, a Finland-based manufacturer of engineered wood products, says its sustainable, material-efficient products can store carbon for decades, helping to combat climate change. 

boombox1 - default
boombox2 -
native1 -

More In Category




halfpage1 -

Most Popular Content

  1. 2021 Giants 400 Report
  2. Top 150 Architecture Firms for 2019
  3. 13 projects that represent the future of affordable housing
  4. Sagrada Familia completion date pushed back due to coronavirus
  5. Top 160 Architecture Firms 2021

 



Magazine Subscription
Subscribe

Get our Newsletters

Each day, our editors assemble the latest breaking industry news, hottest trends, and most relevant research, delivered to your inbox.

Subscribe

Follow BD+C: