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College of Architecture, Planning and Design

APDesign Newsletter 9.12.11


Wendell Burnette, AIA, Principal of Wendell Burnette Architects in Phoenix, Arizona, is giving a lecture titled “Crafting Space” at 4:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 12, at the Leadership Studies Building Town Hall on the Kansas State University campus. The lecture is free, and the public is welcome.

Burnette, who is also the College of Architecture, Planning & Design’s Regnier Visiting Chair for 2011-12, is a self-taught architect with an internationally recognized body of work. His architectural practice is engaged in a wide range of private and public projects. Burnette’s work is concerned with space, light, context, and community. He is a native of Nashville, Tennessee, who discovered the southwest desert as an apprentice at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West.

His eleven-year association with the studio of Will Bruder culminated in a six-year design collaboration on the Phoenix Central Library. He is an assistant professor at Arizona State University and lectures widely in the United States and abroad. Current projects include residences both in Phoenix and around the country, the Palo Verde Library/Maryvale Community Center, the Phoenix Children’s Museum, the Scottsdale Teen Center, and a hotel/spa resort in southern Utah. His design philosophy is grounded in listening and distilling the essence of a project to create highly specific architecture that is at once functional and poetic.

Wendell Burnette’s approach toward architecture stems from his extensive travels and self-investigation through Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas. In the United States, specifically the American deserts, he has absorbed a unique, regional understanding of place.

The work of the Wendell Burnette Architects has been presented in the United States and abroad and has received local and national awards including a 1990 Young Architects Award from Progressive Architecture magazine, a 1999 Emerging Voices Award from the Architectural League of New York, a 1999 P/A Design Award, three Record House Awards in 1996, 2000, and 2006, and a 2007 National AIA Honor Award for the Palo Verde Library/Maryvale Community Center.


Dr. Arthur “Chris” Nelson, FAICP, will present the fall 2011 APDesign Ekdahl Lecture. The lecture, “What Americans Really Want: How Demographic, Economic, And Financial Forces Are Reshaping Americans’ Housing, Neighborhood, And Community Preferences,” will take place at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14, in the Little Theatre at the K-State Student Union. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Nelson is the Presidential Professor of City & Metropolitan Planning in the College of Architecture + Planning at the University of Utah, where he is also Director of the Metropolitan Research Center, Adjunct Professor of Finance in the David Eccles School of Business, and Director of the Master of Real Estate Development Program.

For the past 30 years, Dr. Nelson has conducted pioneering research in smart growth, public facility finance, economic development, and metropolitan development patterns. He is the author of more than 20 books and 300 other scholarly and professional publications. The Journal of Planning Education and Research ranks him in the top 10 of most-cited planning academicians. Island Press recently named him editor of its forthcoming book series in Metropolitan Planning + Design.

Dr. Nelson’s lecture will center on how America became a “suburban” nation after World War II, principally by meeting the needs of the Baby Boomers. The “American Dream” was to own a home on a large lot in the suburbs. But now, the American dream is plural; people want more out of their neighborhoods and communities than in the past. This presentation will review how changing demographics, economics, and financing are changing Americans’ preferences for housing, neighborhoods, and communities. It also will synthesize several national housing preference surveys to show that what Americans want now is very different from what they wanted just a generation ago. The presentation will show the mismatch between what Americans want and what they have, and summarize options to close the gap.

Dr. Nelson has served as an editor, associate editor, or member of the governing board of the Journal of the American Planning Association, Journal of Planning Education and Research, Journal of Urban Affairs, Journal of Community Development, and Journal of Planning Literature.

Numerous federal agencies have sponsored Dr. Nelson’s research such as the National Science Foundation, National Academy of Sciences, U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development, U.S. Dept. of Commerce, U.S. Dept. of Transportation, and the Environmental Protection Agency. Other sponsors include the Brookings Institution, Urban Land Institute, American Planning Association, and National Association of Realtors.

Dr. Nelson’s current work focuses on how demographic economic forces along with shifts in housing preferences will reshape America’s metropolitan areas for the rest of this century.

Founded more than 35 years ago as a memorial honoring Topeka architect and K-State alumnus Oscar Ekdahl, the Ekdahl Lectures bring practitioners, teachers, critics, theorists, and artists to the campus for interaction with students, faculty, and alumni. The Ekdahl Lecture series is characterized by concern about issues affecting the quality of the physical environment and the leadership roles played by the speakers. The purpose of the series is to inform and challenge as well as to reinforce and complement the educational programs of the College of Architecture, Planning & Design.


K-State will celebrate Family Day on Saturday, Sept. 17, 2011. For those of you who’ve been here awhile, you know what a big deal Family Day is. For our freshmen and new students, K-State takes Family Day — and its 83-year history! — very seriously.

The College of Architecture, Planning & Design will host a Family Day bagel breakfast in the Pierce Commons from 9-10 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 17. All students and families and friends are invited for bagels and coffee/juice.

During that time, you will be able to tour the new Study Abroad exhibit, featuring displays from our spring and summer 2011 study abroad students posted in the Chang Gallery and throughout the east wing. For the first time ever, the exhibit will stretch into the Link where a fabulous watercolor painting of the duomo in Orvieto, Italy, painted by study abroad students, is on display. This is a great opportunity to get a taste of the students’ international experiences.

APDesign will also be selling new College merchandise, including T-shirts, coffee mugs, keychains, umbrellas, water bottles and our new APDesign Moleskine sketchbooks.

The College of Architecture, Planning & Design family is an important part of the University community, and Family Day allows us to showcase the APDesign experience and strengthen our family ties.

You, your family, and your friends are invited to visit the campus and take in all that Family Day has to offer (see more information here: http://www.k-state.edu/familyday/


Projects by APDesign student participants in the spring and summer 2011 study abroad programs are on display now through Oct. 1 in the Chang Gallery, the first floor of the east wing of Seaton, and all the way through the Link. The exhibition is free and open to the public, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

The exhibit will also be open during Family Day on Saturday, Sept. 17.