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Tarrant County College, Downtown Campus

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2011, Bing Thom Architects; Bennett Benner Pettit, associated architects. 245 E. Belknap St.

Established in 1965 as a junior college system, Tarrant County College initiated its first downtown campus in 1983 at the May Owen Center, an arcaded brick structure designed by CRSS/Geren west of the Fort Worth Water Gardens (FW16). With the renewed focus in the early twenty-first century on Fort Worth’s relationship to its riverfront, the college constructed a new campus on the bluff just north of the courthouse. Based on Vancouver architect Thom’s many waterfront developments, here the firm designed an ensemble of structures that allows pedestrians to walk from a new plaza on the south side of Belknap Street to the Trinity River below. Two parallel buildings in the block bounded by Commerce and N. Calhoun streets bracket a public open space with a descending watercourse and stairs. A bridge that would have crossed the river was eliminated for funding reasons, but the effectiveness of providing a direct connection from downtown to the river remains.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "Tarrant County College, Downtown Campus", [Fort Worth, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: East, North Central, Panhandle and South Plains, and West, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2019, 201-201.

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