Texas A&M San Antonio
San Antonio, TX, USA
- Munoz & Company
- San Antonio, TX, USA
Construction of Texas A&M San Antonio’s new Central Academic Building opens a new chapter for the revered A&M system, and an entire new line for Acme Brick. The expansive campus is a bold commitment to an underserved South Texas population, designed to
interpret regional tradition and architectural history in striking ways. Acme Brick worked closely with the design team to create a blade cut brick for a smoother alternative to wire cutting. Now, we are making select blade cut blends available as new options in creative design to take your imagination further.
Bringing History to New Tradition
True to its name, the Central Academic Building (CAB) is the frontispiece of Texas A&M San Antonio. The campus will expand beyond it over decades to accommodate an increasing student population.
Like missions that served as beachheads for settlement of San Antonio, the CAB stands as both an organizing headquarters and the design standard to which future buildings will adhere. New structures will continue the distinctive historical and cultural identity established using blade cut Acme Brick.
Once realized, the plan will echo mission compounds at a scale multiples grander. Academic and administrative buildings, a student center, residence and dining halls, and athletics facilities will serve a dynamic, diverse college community.
Acme’s full-time engineers helped architects make best use of standard brick and create special shapes where needed in structurally sound fashion, all as a free service provided on any Acme Brick project.
“We designed Texas A&M San Antonio to reflect historic traditions and sources of architecture in South Texas, drawing on the examples of Mission San Jose, Spanish colonial buildings, and even Granada. With brick specifically, we looked at how many variations, patterns, and shadow effects we could achieve with a single modular brick. Acme was willing to reconsider the manufacturing process to create just the right consistent look across the growing campus with a lesstextured blade cut brick, and then help us shave costs by creating a thin brick for monumental archways. Acme’s local sourcing was important in ongoing efforts to build responsibly now, and over the full development of the 694 acre site.”
— Geoff Edwards, AIA, Principal, Muñoz & Company
Across the centuries, architects stand firm on masonry for appealing designs that last. Brick is particularly pleasing for capturing a connection with history through shapes and textures that flatteringly echo revered forms. Functional arcades create shelter from weather, and arched openings and pilasters elevate otherwise ordinary building elements. Remarkably, virtually all of the intricate and varied patterns and treatments achieved were created by talented masons manipulating simple modular Acme Brick.
Architects honored the rhythms and scale of Mission San José by creating a heirarchy of grand multistory entrances and ordered wings divided by dentils and soldier courses that serve as bases for arcades, and as caps and cornices for pilasters and roof lines. At a distance blade cut Acme Brick presents a smooth, soft-appearing façade that heightens the contrast with diagonally cut and turned sawtooth units in grand spandrel patterns, and with alternating recessed soldier units lining numerous architectural details throughout the project.