2021 TxN 20 Architecture Honorees

& Industry Highlights

We are excited to bring you the Texan by Nature 20 (TxN 20) for its third year! The TxN 20 is an effort to recognize the best work in conservation coming from businesses operating and based in Texas. It’s an opportunity to showcase innovation, commitment, and best practices from a variety of industries.

To select the 2021 TxN 20, the TxN Team evaluated submissions as well as conducted independent research across 2,000+ of Texas’ publicly traded and private companies within 12 industry sectors. All companies were evaluated on a 17-point scoring system to narrow down the list of the top 60 companies in Texas. A selection committee of top industry leaders was formed to evaluate the top 60 companies and select the final honorees for the TxN 20.

Valued at a 3.3 billion dollar industry in 2021, with over 5,000 architecture companies operating in the state, architects plan, design, and develop residential, institutional, recreational, commercial, and industrial buildings. At 29.1 million Texas residents, innovative, mindful, reliable, resilient, and environmentally friendly infrastructure is needed to reduce and mitigate the pressure being put on our natural resources by Texas’ growing population. Sustainable infrastructure positively impacts communities, integrates natural resources, and benefits the bottom line through cost savings. 

Learn more about the 2021 TxN 20 honorees from the architecture, design, and development industry and see a list of industry highlights below.

2021 Honoree: HDR

HDR is a design firm specializing in engineering, architecture, environmental, and construction services. HDR has produced several award-winning conservation projects with endangered species around Texas. Their Eliza Spring Daylighting project works towards long-term recovery of the endangered Barton Springs Salamander and the Austin Blind Salamander. HDR also works with several species of sea turtles after the devastating effects of Hurricane Harvey, leading to a $40,000 HDR Foundation grant to rehabilitate large turtles. In addition to their work with endangered species, HDR’s Green Teams, groups of professionals that volunteer to promote sustainable solutions, take the lead in engaging employees in sustainability efforts. For example, through the Houston Green Team, 11 HDR colleagues planted 100 trees while participating in the Houston Area Urban Forestry Council’s 12th Annual Tree Planting Competition. Sustainable efforts like tree planting projects shine a light on the importance of sustainability for the company.

2021 Honoree: The Beck Group

The Dallas-based Beck Group provides architecture, construction, development, and sustainable design and consulting, as well as finance and technology services all under one roof. In 2020, they quantified the financial impact of their efforts to reduce environmental harm from the buildings they design and build. This revealed energy savings from 25 projects of 72,273,140 kWh/year–which is a financial savings of $551,444,058.20! 

Read the full honoree Q&A write-ups and read the 2021 press release

Industry Highlights

In addition to this year’s TxN 20 honorees, learn more about best practices in conservation and sustainability coming from companies across the architecture, design, and development industry.

  • Since 2015, American Campus Communities (ACC) has completed 133 LED retrofit projects at ACC-owned properties, including 28 projects in 2020. This equates to projects at 80% of their properties, and ROI for these lighting projects consistently exceeds 14%. In 2020, they also completed a comprehensive analysis of their greenhouse gas emissions, energy, waste, and water use to inform target setting and future sustainability projects. ACC was a 2019 and 2020 TxN 20 honoree.
  • Through a $1.9 billion effort, Stantec is leading the design of a 26.7 mile long levee and floodwall system along the upper Texas coast from Sabine Pass to Galveston Bay. This design will ensure increased protection from hurricanes and sea level rise on the coast. Additionally, it will restore 400+ acres of marsh and preserve 500+ acres of forested wetlands, which is invaluable habitat for native wildlife. Stantec was a 2020 TxN 20 honoree.
  • In 2020, Dewberry employees volunteered 4,4000+ hours for local communities. Their employees actively serve communities by volunteering in various social and environmental efforts throughout the year including, but not limited to, Earth Day cleanups, river revitalization, and river cleanups. 
  • Overland Partners prioritizes health and wellness and urban design, contributing to the harmony between people and nature. For example, the shopping center, Brodie Oaks, located in Austin, promotes pedestrian-friendly districts that are inspired by nature and culture to promote the protection of urban ecology and greenspace. Overland Partners was a 2020 TxN 20 honoree.
  • Lake Flato has a goal in place to reduce water use by 50% in all new projects and achieve net-zero water by 2040. Through careful planning and design, they direct water to cisterns with the incorporation of roof slopes and rain chains in their architecture. Lake Flato uses their Cistern Sizing tool to ensure optimal water conservation. 
  • Jacobs serves as the lead engineer for The Nature Conservancy in their effort to reconstruct the continent’s largest reef, Windara Reef. They designed the second phase of the reef’s construction, expanding the reef to 20 total hectares using nature-based infrastructure. Their design improves the reef’s water quality, fishery productivity, biodiversity rates, and also provides economic growth with new marine industry jobs.