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Association for Preservation Technology International:

Texas Chapter

AIA Houston Historic Resources Committee Speaker Series w/Fran Gale: Adventures in Preservation

  • Thursday, February 18, 2021
  • 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
  • virtual

Throughout Fran’s career as an architectural conservator, visits to architectural libraries and archives provided valuable information about historic building materials and sites. As an emerging professional in New York City, she was a regular patron of Columbia University’s Avery Library. Having access to early photographs, architectural journals and trade catalogs was helpful in understanding the physical evidence that she discovered on historic preservation projects. Archival research yielded information on archaic building materials, decorative painting techniques and construction practices. The recommendations that Fran provided on important projects including the General Electric Building, New York Public Library and the Pension Building were often based on archival research as well as the results of laboratory and field examination of historic building materials.

A passion for library and archival research has continued throughout Fran’s career in architectural conservation. In 2007 she accepted a faculty/staff appointment at the University of Texas at Austin’s School of Architecture to teach as well as to work with UT’s Project Management and Construction Services on campus projects. Her shared goal was to update historic buildings on campus while preserving their distinctive elements and character defining features. During her tenure at UT, she made frequent visits to the Architectural and Planning Library and Alexander Archives where she poured through original specifications, early correspondence and remarkable construction photographs. Coupled with the examination and testing of features and finishes, archival research has been a critical component in preserving UT’s historic campus.

AIA Credit: 1.0 AIA HSW/LU


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