“As long as society is anti-gay, then it will seem like being gay is anti-social.”-Joseph Francis
“I like my beers cold and my homosexuals flaming.”
This project explores the “coming out” of a space in the urban family. Like a family hiding their gay child, society, whether directly or indirectly, often regulated gay and lesbian neighborhoods into the least desirable areas of its community. That same societal shame was often reflected in the dark and uninviting architecture of those neighborhoods.
Emerging from the shadows of yesterday, this bar’s interior is flooded with natural daylight via skylights and glass floors. Twenty-foot-wide full-height doors invite everyone in, while lighting effects communicate the high energy of the inside environment to the outside viewer – an “out” building existing in a synergetic equilibrium with the urban transit corridor along which it resides.
Features like columns, back bar and bar tops use the latest in lighting effects and materials to virtually glow from within. Using a full spectrum of rainbow colors, these elements adjust to provide an ever-changing backdrop for every occasion, from holiday themes to special events to friends meeting for a night out, and to share the festivities openly with the streetscape beyond.
How has the change in society’s views on homosexuality been reflected in its architecture? This building is unsympathetically, unashamedly and unapologetically “out” to its neighbors. Perhaps, in the end, the biggest revelation is the lack of disruption this building’s “coming out” has made in its urban family, acknowledging that much has, indeed, changed.