© Casey Dunn
CRITIC JUDY BIRDSONG
Austin, Texas, U.S.A.
The Refuge serves as a filter between Waller Creek and Red River, offering visitors alternative perspectives and experiences related to the activities of roller-skating and bowling. The organization of the programs comes from the concept of the glimpse, which draws the visitor through the site by providing intentional and intriguing views of the bowler and skater. The visual and auditory presence of the pinsetters activate the bar as one directly enters from Red River, and then the glimpses of bowlers pulls them through until they reach the tranquility of the skating rink by Waller Creek. The Refuge also serves as a critical connector to the Waller Creek Master Plan redevelopment by Van Valkenburgh Associates, providing access to and across the creek.
This transition marks the important role that the architecture plays in creating harmony between the busy urban life of Red River and the serenity of Waller Creek. The relationship between the areas of movement and the areas of pause/glimpse create a complex visual dialogue between the perception of who is the viewer and who is the subject.