TIPS IRON & STEEL AUSTIN, TEXAS
Tips Iron & Steel is a 5.84 acre steel fabrication facility on the western edge of the urban core in Austin. This sprawling and cavernous industrial site was founded in 1904, and is a product of growth by accretion. Wanting to preserve all this industrial history, character, and authenticity, the owner desired to repurpose, rather than redevelop the property, avoiding the homogenization so often prevalent in working at this scale. The first phase of the project, a 20,000 s.f indoor restaurant and 13,000 s.f. exterior courtyard with offices and loft spaces above, is sited in the five northernmost bays of the steel fabrication facility.
Building systems, form and finishes are chosen to be highly respectful of existing construction. Lower walls are lightweight insulated concrete with a natural stucco finish, heavy, durable and serious, with a hint of handmade in the finish. Higher frame walls, less susceptible to water, are clad in corrugated tin. At every opportunity, the existing steel remains exposed. All of these decisions support an effort to present the restaurant as just another layer of accretion on the site.