Design Talk will discuss architecture, design for community

The Center for Architecture will host the second meeting of Design Talk on Feb. 14, featuring guest speaker Kevin Buchanan, writer and photographer of FortWorthology website.

Design Talk is a series of open discussions where architects, interior designers and the community can talk about architecture and design in Fort Worth. The free event is held on the second Tuesday of each month.
“It’s catered toward public outreach, teaching and having interaction with the public,” said Bart Shaw, President of the Fort Worth chapter of American Institute of Architects. “[We’re] creating a discussion of what architecture is all about, and what architects do.”
In this month’s discussion, Buchanan will lead a talk on designing neighborhoods with less emphasis on strip malls and subdivisions and more about walkable living areas. After moving to Fort Worth in 2000, he noticed something about the distance within neighborhoods.
“We lived out in the far west suburbs, and after a while, I started noticing that it took seven minutes to drive from our house to the exit of our subdivision before we could go anywhere else,” Buchanan said. “It just started bugging me, there [had] to be something better.”
A community can make neighborhoods people love he said.  Places that do not require people to get in their cars just to grab a gallon of milk.
“It seems ridiculous to me that the vast majority of people who live in Fort Worth have to burn a gallon of gas to get a gallon of milk,” Buchanan said. 
Design Talk was started by architect Joe Self, and interior designer Tracy Self, former hosts of the KTCU program, “Design Talk Radio.” The idea for the discussion series sprang from their radio show.
The two hosts teamed up with Shaw to talk about how the series could work. They decided it would follow an informal format that would include a theme and a guest speaker for each discussion and encourage public participation Shaw said. Based on the discussion series’ debut on Jan. 10, Shaw believed the series could have long-term success.
“I’m very optimistic that [Design Talk] will start to become a staple in the community, as a place to come have a good discussion, and really learn about architecture and what architects do,” Shaw said.
Buchanan said Design Talk was important, not only for the architecture community, but for the community at large. He viewed the discussion series as a medium for sharing ideas, and bringing about some form of change for the better.
“Just to get the ideas out there, I think, helps a lot to educate people, to show them there are alternatives. I think that it helps to guide the city in a new direction,” he said.
Design Talk  
When: Feb. 14
Where: Center for Architecture, 3425 West Seventh Street
Time: 7 p.m.