Herald-Tribune presents ArchiFest Sarasota on May 7

A residential project on Morningside Drive in Lido Shores by Tatiana White. Photo by Harold Bubil.

A residential project on Morningside Drive in Lido Shores by Tatiana White. Photo by Harold Bubil.

The local architecture community is very good at putting on educational events. The Sarasota Architectural Foundation and the Center for Architecture Sarasota stage several events each month throughout the season.

Those events typically feature the work of one architect or designer, and are well attended, mostly by the groups’ members.


On May 7, the Herald-Tribune will try something different — a one-day architectural festival that will bring together a cross-section of the design community. Some of the leading architects in Sarasota-Manatee will gather on the plaza on the covered west side of the newspaper’s Sarasota headquarters building, at 1741 Main St., for the first ArchiFest Sarasota.

From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., the public is welcome to listen to on-stage interviews and panel discussions, and meet with the designers face-to-face at their tables on the shaded plaza. Admission is free.

Herald-Tribune real estate editor and architecture writer Harold Bubil is the host of the event, assisted by co-host Kathryn Parks, a well-known actress and singer in local theater productions who also works in the marketing department of Michael Saunders & Co., the event’s exclusive real estate sponsor.

“Sarasota’s built environment has wide appeal, and not just because of its historical roots in the 1920s real estate boom and the midcentury modernism of the Sarasota School of architecture,” said Bubil. “Throughout Southwest Florida, homeowners and institutions increasingly are turning to architects to create buildings and landscapes that are both suitable and inspiring in a rapidly changing region.

“The goal of ArchiFest Sarasota is to enhance the awareness of the work being done by today’s architects, while giving those who attend the chance to ask questions and share their viewpoints.”


The Herald-Tribune building, 1741 Main St., downtown Sarasota, is the site of ArchiFest Sarasota on May 7, 2016. (Herald-Tribune staff photo by Mike Lang)

The Herald-Tribune building, 1741 Main St., downtown Sarasota, is the site of ArchiFest Sarasota on May 7, 2016. (Herald-Tribune staff photo by Mike Lang)

“The Sarasota School of architecture is an honored part of our history,” Bubil said, “and its principles of good design continue to inspire architects and building owners. But I believe our current group of architects compares favorably with that noteworthy group of designers in the 1950s and ‘60s.”

The roster of nonprofits, trade associations and educational groups include the Center for Architecture Sarasota, Sarasota Architectural Foundation, AIA Florida/Gulf Coast, University of Florida CityLab master’s degree program, the Florida Foundation for Architecture, the local chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers and the Universal Design Coalition.

Panel discussions will be held at intervals throughout the event. The schedule, which is subject to change:

ArchiFest Sarasota

10:00 a.m. — Introduction with host Harold Bubil and co-host Kathryn Parks

10:05 — Sweet/Sparkman Architects/Jerry Sparkman

10:15 — White Buildings/Tatiana White, AIA

10:25 — SAF/Christopher Wilson

10:35 — Halflants+Pichette/Michael Halflants, AIA

10:45 — Guy Peterson, FAIA

11 a.m.PANEL: “Design Trends and Sarasota’s Changing Skyline,” a discussion that will include commentary on the controversial Vue Sarasota Bay condominium project. Zoning rules and other guidelines that affect the height, location and appearance of downtown buildings will be discussed, with audience questions. Another discussion point is residential design and the market forces at play. Panelists: architects Guy Peterson, Jonathan Parks, Mark Sultana, Jerry Sparkman; Realtor Drayton Saunders.

11:30 — DSDG/Mark Sultana, AIA

11:40 — CFAS/Cindy Peterson or Sandy Motto

11:50 — Solstice Architects/Jonathan Parks, AIA

12 p.m. — Borden Landscape/Tim Borden

12:10 — UF CityLab/Martin Gold

12:20 — Carlson Studio Architecture/Michael Carlson, AIA, LEED-AP

12:30 — JNW Studios/Julian Norman-Webb, AIA

12:40 — Hall Architects/Greg Hall, AIA

12:50 — Architecture Joyce Owens/Joyce Owens, AIA

1:00PANEL: “The Role of Architecture in a Rapidly Changing World.” Architecture is known for serving a social mission. But it also is used by developers as a tool for selling real estate. How can these competing interests be balanced? Panelists: architects Michael Halflants, Joyce Owens, Gregory Hall, Martin Gold.

1:30 — Timothy Del Vescovo, AIA

1:40PANEL: “Beyond the Cocktail Napkin — The Design Process in the Digital Age.” This discussion will focus on how computer technology has enabled architects to create what they can dream, with varying degrees of success and public acceptance. Panelists: architects John Bryant, Damien Blumetti, Tatiana White, Martin Gold.

2:10 — ASID/Jeff and Joyce Hart, ASID

2:20 — Joe Farris, AIA

2:30 — Holly Dennis, ASID

2:40 — AIA Florida Gulf Coast/Lisa Hess

2:50 — Universal Design Coalition

3:00 — PANEL: “I Married an Architect: Blueprints for a Happy Home.” Panelists Kathryn Parks, Cindy Peterson, Christopher Wilson, Jeff and Joyce Hart.

Women are invited to wear their finest Kentucky Derby hats.

For more information, email Harold.Bubil@heraldtribune.com, or call 941-361-4805.

Harold Bubil

Recipient of the 2015 Bob Graham Architectural Awareness Award from the American Institute of Architects/Florida-Caribbean, Harold Bubil is real estate editor of the Herald-Tribune Media Group. Born in Newport, R.I., his family moved to Sarasota in 1958. Harold graduated from Sarasota High School in 1970 and the University of Florida in 1974 with a degree in journalism. For the Herald-Tribune, he writes and edits stories about residential real estate, architecture, green building and local development history. He also is a photographer and public speaker. Contact him via email, or at (941) 361-4805.
Last modified: May 4, 2016
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