"Florida Buildings I Love"


Here is what I love about architecture:

The Lincoln Road Parking Garage, 2010, Miami Beach. Herzog and de Meuron. Staff photo / Harold Bubil; 2013.

The Lincoln Road Parking Garage, 2010, Miami Beach. Herzog and de Meuron. Staff photo / Harold Bubil; 2013.

In a changing world, the buildings last. They are a signature of days gone by, days we often view as better than the ones we are living now. That may more may not be true. But it is a delight to find an old building well preserved and imagine the circumstances of its creation, the dreams and talent that went into it, the need for it, the occupants who made lives or work in it, and it is heartbreaking to see one that is ignored and dilapidated.


Preservationists call that "demolition by neglect." The restoration of important old buildings is something to be celebrated.

At the same time, architecture is a statement of where we are today and where we want to go. So there is joy in buildings both old and new.

Not all buildings, of course. Architecture stands on three pillars -- commodity, firmness and delight. A building must be strong, useful and have that more difficult-to-define quality of delight. That is the art of architecture; it elicits an emotional response. Some buildings are strictly utilitarian and have no delight. Others have limited or narrowly defined utility and only delight, and, it is hoped, enough strength to stand up for a while. These structures tend to beĀ sculptures or monuments.

To celebrate Florida's architecture, past and present, I have begun a series on Twitter (@htrealestate) and Facebook (facebook.com/harold.bubil) called "Florida Buildings I Love." It is a series of photographs, almost all of them from my archives. These are buildings that I have experienced in some way, either just from the outside or also from the inside.

The selections are both old and new, and represent the diversity of architectural styles that flourish in the state. The series has reached 27 buildings, and, I can tell you, there are a lot more than 27 buildings in Florida that I love. I have put the first 27 in a gallery that you can see by clicking here.

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: July 14, 2016
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