Mapping the Cultural Landscape of San Antonio
January 30, 2024 | 5:30pm – 7:30pm
100 Auditorium Circle
San Antonio, TX 78205
Join the ICAA Texas and local architect Steven Land Tillotson for an evening lecture on “Mapping the Cultural Landscape of San at San Antonio” at the Tobin Center.
San Antonio constitutes a polymorphic and episodic city form whose initial urban fabric was formed under the Laws of the Indies. These planning precepts, derived from the writings of Vitruvius and Alberti, regulated the development and administration of new towns and lands in Spain’s colonial territories from the 16th to 19th centuries. Town location, orientation, and layout were based on classical principles and contemporaneous knowledge of community safety, health, and welfare.
Yet their application was often altered in response to local conditions. This session traces San Antonio’s urban form from its origins as an outpost in NewSpain’s northern Frontera, through its early colonial settlement, to township, city, and the current metropolis in context of regulatory compliance, and impacts to environmental and human health.
Based on historic maps, archival research, and extensive fieldwork, the author reconstructs San Antonio’s developmental episodes, highlights key phenomena of its townscape, analyzes street patterns as components of the cultural landscape, and muses on San Antonio’s genius loci.
Steven Land Tillotson, FAIA
Steven Land Tillotson is an architect with blended experience in architecture, historic preservation, urban design and planning, and has produced a variety of award winning civic, educational and institutional projects including National Trust for Historic Preservation awards for Our Lady of the Lake University Main Building Rehabilitation and Restoration of the historic Plaza and Visitors Complex in Roma, and an AIA Interfaith Forum for Religious Art and Architecture award for restoration of La Lomita Chapel in Mission.
Steven is a past recipient of the Texas Historic Resources Fellowship Grant and has worked for the Texas Historic Commission as grants monitor and a Main Street design consultant for the first year of the program. Early work in preservation included the Dulnig Block rehabilitation, Steves Homestead restoration and the 1986 Alamo Plaza Master Plan. Recent work includes historic downtown revitalization planning for the cities of Brownville and Laredo, master plan for the Mission Marquee Plaza, the Mission Park and Pavilions, and San
Pedro Creek Culture Park. Steven is currently working on the redevelopment of the Rio Grande Riverfront Park and Esplanade in Brownsville.
In addition to a prolific architectural portfolio, Steven served on the San Antonio Ad Hoc Master Plan Committee, the City South Management Authority, is a past Chair of the AIA San Antonio Urban Affairs Committee, and conducted numerous community charettes.
An ardent investigator of the urban process, Steven has reconstructed the succession of San Antonio’s historical episodes and continues
to understand and define its cultural landscape.