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New Critically Acclaimed Murder Mystery, Midland Club, Is Now Available at The Regulator Bookshop in Durham

new murder mystery/gay lit book by Mark Spano

Book reviewers compare it to “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” and film noir classics.

Chapel Hill author Mark Spano is pleased to announce that his new, critically acclaimed mystery novel, Midland Club, is now available at The Regulator Bookshop on Ninth Street in Durham.

Since opening in December of 1976, The Regulator Bookshop has remained an independent store, selling “a little bit of everything,” as the owners state on the website. “Fiction, mysteries, poetry, cookbooks, kids’ books…You name it, we’ve got it.”

The Regulator is also an icon in downtown Durham that’s committed to serving the community by carrying books from lesser known authors, especially local authors and including self-published books; by buying and selling used books; and by hosting reading and author events.

“Having my book on the shelf at The Regulator Bookshop feels a bit like playing the Palace,” said Spano. “I’m a pretty lucky author.”

Published by Thunderfoot Press, Midland Club is a tale of corruption, lies, and murder in a Midwestern city in 1958. “Only one man is willing to reveal the truth – at the risk of his own life,” the synopsis teases.

Thus far, all of its reviewers have praised the 120-page book for reading “like a film noir classic.” One critic offered, “There’s a bit of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil amidst the melancholy and I highly recommend this book.” Another called it “a small jewel…flawlessly smooth and realistic…” And an appreciative reader posted, “Spano can be proud of his story as it perfectly captures that place and time to create an engaging work of noir fiction. It kept me reading non-stop until the end, meriting this hearty recommendation.”

For more insight into Midland Club, follow Thunderfoot Press’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ThunderfootPress/.

The Regulator Bookshop is located at 720 Ninth Street, Durham, NC 27705. Hours are Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. until 8 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 8 p.m. For more information, visit www.regulatorbookshop.com.

fiction/mystery/gay literature

Author Mark Spano

About The Author:

MARK SPANO is the author of five works of fiction and a memoir. As a filmmaker, his work includes The Quality of Light: A Biography of Claude Howell and the definitive documentary on Sicily, “Reimagining Sicily.” He holds advanced degrees from Marymount University of Virginia and the American University in Washington, D.C., and now resides in rural Orange County, North Carolina.


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Chapel In The Pines: Shaw Design Gets Phase Two Underway

Keith Shaw, AIA

Keith Shaw, AIA

Chapel Hill-based architectural firm Shaw Design Associates is now preparing schematics for Phase Two of the building project at Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church, which will add a new 3191-square-foot Fellowship Hall and set the stage for a new entry courtyard to the church campus on Great Ridge Parkway just south of Chapel Hill.

“I’m very pleased that the building committee is proceeding with Phase Two so the initial design concept can be fulfilled,” said Keith Shaw, AIA. “It has always been the intention for the buildings on this campus to be a sermon on their own by providing an inviting, embracing, and reverent place to worship and fellowship.”

When Shaw began working with the building committee in 2010, the group established a philosophical statement that provided the framework for his design decisions: “Chapel in the Pines reflects God’s majesty by being in harmony with its surroundings, welcoming to its community, and aesthetically original.”

Main, sanctuary building completed in 2011.

Main, sanctuary building completed in 2011.

To incorporate that statement into the architecture for the 5201-square-foot sanctuary and 3191-square-foot Education Wing to its right that he completed in 2011, Shaw specified pine timber framing — cut from trees that are grown in managed timber land in North Carolina and prepared in Virginia – in deference to the pine forest surrounding the chapel. He also plans to use pine timber for the Fellowship Hall.

“The simple forms and textures of the pine timbers reflect the natural surroundings and create a warm and inviting place to worship,” he said.

As with the first two structures, views to the forest are a key element of the design. Tall windows will allow natural light to fill the interior, reducing the use of electric light. As it is in the sanctuary, indirect lighting will be used to reduce glare and illuminate natural timber beams above.

To make the church as welcoming to its community as the committee’s statement suggests, Shaw designed each structure to human scale, rather than the grand, formal scale of many liturgical structures. However, the open timber roof construction accentuates the vertical lines characteristic of houses of worship, helping to lead the eye and spirit upward. The wood trusses, along with window detailing, recall the outstretched tree branches of the surrounding forest. The tall pine posts and beams supporting the gabled roof at the entrance portico suggest tree limbs reaching towards the sky.

When the courtyard is completed, its low stonewall will “reach out and embrace visitors and symbolize both the affection and protection awaiting them inside the Chapel in the Pines.” Shaw said. “It will also provide an exterior ‘room’ to prepare for worship.”

Shaw expects Phase Two to begin construction in the summer of 2016.

For more information on Chapel in the Pines, visit http://citppc.org.

For more information Shaw Design Associates, visit http://shawdesign.us.

About Shaw Design Associates: Founded by Keith Shaw, AIA, in 1995, Shaw Design Associates, P.A. is a recognized leader in providing innovative architectural solutions for all project types – solutions based on time-tested, enduring standards and plan elements that are vital to design integrity. The firm adheres to these design truths by focusing on the land, the light, and the patterns of interaction between the owner, the structure, and the environment. Shaw Design Associates is located at 180 Providence Road, #8, Chapel Hill, NC 27514. For more information, visit shawdesign.us or call 919.493.0528.


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Shaw Design To Direct 12-Day “Building Blitz” in Chapel Hill

Rendering, front view, future New Life Fellowship hall and classroom building.

Rendering, front view, future New Life Fellowship hall and classroom building.

An army of volunteers will construct church fellowship hall.

Like a conductor directing an orchestra, Chapel Hill architect Keith Shaw, AIA, principal of Shaw Design Associates, will direct a “building blitz” later this month as local volunteers and another 55 volunteers from as far away as Trinidad come together to construct New Life Fellowship’s new 6184-square-foot fellowship hall and classroom in just 12 days.

With help from general contractor AG Builders, the blitz will take place at the church’s new campus — 166 Weaver Dairy Road, Chapel Hill — from October 25 to November 5. It will begin with a foundation slab in place and end with all interior walls framed and the Prairie Style exterior nearly completed.

“It’s going to be an exciting opportunity to witness what can be accomplished in a short time when everyone involved is so dedicated to the outcome,” Shaw said.

Well-known for the estate homes he’s designed within the gates of The Governor’s Club in Chapel Hill, Keith Shaw is also a lay leader in New Life Fellowship, a Seventh-day Adventist Church currently in Durham. As such, he and the congregation called upon Maranatha International, a supporting ministry of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, to make this building blitz happen.

A non-profit organization, Maranatha assists with at least a dozen construction projects in North America each year by mobilizing volunteers. Projects range from renovations of existing buildings to new construction.

New Life Fellowship’s building blitz will cover Phase One of the total project. Phase Two will add a 7010-square-foot main lobby and 300-seat sanctuary to the 3.5-acre church campus.

Primary exterior building materials will include six-inch energy-saving SIPS wall panels (structural insulated panels), Hardie® Shake siding, brick and stone. All lighting will be LED, and will be donated to the project.

According to Shaw, the volunteer labor and lighting donation will provide a huge cost savings for the church. Site work is estimated at $475,000 with construction cost projected as $500,000.

For more information on the 12-day building blitz, follow New Life Fellowship’s Facebook page. For more information on Shaw Design Associates, visit http://shawdesign.us.

About Shaw Design Associates:

Founded by Keith Shaw, AIA, in 1995, Shaw Design Associates, P.A. is a recognized leader in providing innovative architectural solutions for all project types – solutions based on time-tested, enduring standards and plan elements that are vital to design integrity. The firm adheres to these design truths by focusing on the land, the light, and the patterns of interaction between the owner, the structure, and the environment. Shaw Design Associates is located at 180 Providence Road, #8, Chapel Hill, NC 27514. For more information, visit shawdesign.us or call 919.493.0528.


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Frank Harmon Architect PA Makes “Architect 50” List For Third Straight Year

The small Raleigh, NC, firm ranks 21st this year among the top 50 firms in the nation in terms of design quality, sustainability ethos, and profitability.

May 16, 2011 (Raleigh, NC) – For the third consecutive year, Frank Harmon

Frank Harmon, FAIA, principal/founder, Frank Harmon Architect PA © f8 Photo Studios

Architect PA has made Architect magazine’s “Architect 50” list of architectural firms from across the nation, placing 21st.

Architect magazine ranks firms for its annual Architect 50 list based on a composite assessment of the firms’ commitment to sustainability, design quality, and profitability.

“The usual rating of firms by gross billing, number of employees, etc., would not include our firm,” said Frank Harmon, FAIA, principal of Frank Harmon Architect PA. “But when we are rated on design recognition for our clients, sustainability, and financial performance, our firm shows up well.”

“By looking at the whole picture, we’re able to honor not the biggest, but the best,” writes executive editor Amanda Kolson Hurley in the May 2011 edition of the national journal. “The 2011 Architect 50…shows that [architecture] and [architecture/engineering] firms, large and small, can do well in this economy.”

Frank Harmon Architect PA, an intentionally small firm, specializes in modern, sustainable, and regionally appropriate design. Among the firm’s 2010-2011 design awards, its thoroughly “green” Sunday school addition at the Circular Congregational Church in downtown Charleston, SC, received three awards: a national award from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Interfaith Forum on Religion, Art and Architecture; an AIA NC Honor Award; and an AIA Triangle Honor Award.

Harmon’s firm also received three awards for the Walnut Creek Wetland Center over the past year: an AIA NC Merit Award; an Environmental Design award from the City of Raleigh; and a Sir Walter Award for Community Appearance, also from the City of Raleigh.

The only other North Carolina firm to make the 2011 list is Pearce Brinkley Cease + Lee of Raleigh and Asheville, at 23rd.

For more information on Frank Harmon Architect PA, visit www.frankharmon.com.

To see the entire Architect 50 list, go to www.architectmagazine.com.

About Frank Harmon Architect PA:

Frank Harmon Architect PA is an award-winning architectural firm that is recognized nationally as a leader in modern, innovative, sustainable and regionally appropriate design. Its competition-winning design for the AIA NC Center for Architecture & Design  is currently under construction in downtown Raleigh. The firm’s work has been featured in numerous books, magazines, journals and online magazines on architecture, including ArchDaily.com, Dwell, Architectural Record, Architect, Residential Architect, and ArchitectureWeek.com. Recently, Frank Harmon, FAIA, founder and principal, was included in Residential Architect magazine’s “RA 50: The short list of architects we love.” For more information, go to www.frankharmon.com.


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Frank Harmon Architect Wins Faith & Form Design Award for Modern, Green Church Addition in Charleston

Courtyard elevation at dusk © Richard Leo Johnson

January 5, 2011 (RALEIGH, NC) – The “green” Sunday school addition at the Circular Congregational Church in downtown Charleston has received its third design award, the most recent from Faith & Form Magazine and the Interfaith Forum on Religion, Art and Architecture (IFRAA). The building was designed by Frank Harmon Architect PA of Raleigh, NC, and completed in 2009.

 

Carefully sited on an isolated section of the churchyard to lessen its intrusion on a historic cemetery there, the two-story, 3000-square-foot building includes low-tech eco-friendly elements as well as state-of-the-art technology. It features Charleston’s first vegetated roof, a geothermal heating and cooling system, a rainwater collection cistern for landscape use, the use of recycled building materials wherever possible. The building’s siting, shallow depth, operable windows, and porches also echo vernacular methods for bringing natural light and cross-ventilation into the building.

 

“The Building Committee asked us to design the most sustainable, 21st century Sunday school addition possible in the city, with the smallest possible footprint to respect and complement the beauty of the historic grounds,” said Frank Harmon, FAIA, founder and principal of Frank Harmon Architect PA and Professor In Practice at North Carolina State University’s College of Design in Raleigh.

 

“This is our generation’s contribution and a lasting testament to being sensitive to the church, the city, and the earth,” said Dr. Stephen Cofer-Shabica, chairman of the building committee task force.

 

Covered porches serve as exterior hallways. © Richard Leo Johnson

The addition has received Honor Awards from the North Carolina chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA NC) and AIA Triangle, a section of AIA NC. The Building Committee also received the Historic Charleston Foundation’s Founders Award for the church’s addition.

 

According to the Faith & Form awards jury, the best liturgical architecture projects of the nearly 200 submitted “maintained a remarkable consistency throughout – from building exteriors, interiors, and furnishings, to the landscape.” All 2010 winners can be seen at www.faithandform.com/awards/2010winners.

 

Faith & Form is the AIA’s quarterly interfaith journal on religion, art and architecture. The annual design awards program is co-sponsored by Faith & Form and the (IFRAA), a Knowledge Community of the AIA. The awards program was founded in 1978 to honor the best in architecture, liturgical design, and art for religious spaces. For more information on the IFRAA/Faith & Form awards, go to www.faithnform.com.

 

For more information on Frank Harmon Architect PA, visit www.frankharmon.com.

 

About Frank Harmon Architect PA:

 

Frank Harmon Architect PA, a multi-award-winning firm headquartered in downtown Raleigh, is recognized nationally as a leader in innovative, modern, and regionally inspired “green” architecture. This year the firm was ranked 13th out of the top 50 firms in the nation by Architect magazine, an annual rating that emphasizes ecological commitment and design quality as much as profitability. Recent projects include Duke University’s Ocean Science Teaching Center in Beaufort, the NC Botanical Garden’s new Visitors Center at UNC-Chapel Hill, and Merchants Millpond Outdoor Educational building in Gatesville, N.C. The firm’s work has been featured in numerous books, magazines and journals on architecture, including Dwell, Architectural Record, Architect, and Residential Architect. For more information, go to www.frankharmon.com.

 

 

 


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Studio A Shares Special Design Award for Charleston Church Addition

2010 Religious Art & Architecture Awards Announced

 

December 15, 2010 (CHARLESTON, SC) – The new “green” Sunday school

© Richard Leo Johnson

addition at the Circular Congregational Church on Market Street in downtown Charleston has received a design award in the “New Facilities” category from Faith & Form Magazine and the Interfaith Forum on Religion, Art and Architecture (IFRAA). The building was designed by Frank Harmon Architect PA of Raleigh, NC, with Whitney Powers, AIA, of Studio A in Charleston, serving as primary consultant and building committee chair.

 

Powers was responsible for bringing in Frank Harmon, FAIA, a leader among the nation’s “green” architects, to design the structure. It was completed in 2007.

 

According to Powers, founder and principal of Studio A, the addition to the oldest church in Charleston was sensitively sited on an isolated section of the churchyard to lessen its intrusion on the cemetery there.

 

A thoroughly eco-friendly, or “green,” structure, the two-story, 3000-square-foot building includes a vegetated roof, geothermal heating and cooling system, a rainwater collection cistern for landscape use, recycled building materials wherever possible, open-air porches, and window placement to maximize natural lighting and ventilation.

 

The Sunday school building has received Honor Awards from the North Carolina chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA NC) and AIA Triangle, a section of AIA NC. The building’s vegetated roof  — Charleston’s first green roof – has been featured on Greenroofs.com.

 

Whitney Powers, AIA, Studio A, Inc.

Whitney Powers’ Building Committee also received the Historic Charleston Foundation’s Founders Award for the church’s addition.

 

According to the awards jury, the best liturgical architecture projects of the nearly 200 submitted “maintained a remarkable consistency throughout – from building exteriors, interiors, and furnishings, to the landscape.”

 

Faith & Form is the AIA’s quarterly interfaith journal on religion, art and architecture. The annual design awards program is co-sponsored by Faith & Form and the (IFRAA), a Knowledge Community of the AIA. The awards program was founded in 1978 to honor the best in architecture, liturgical design, and art for religious spaces. For more information on the IFRAA/Faith & Form awards, go to www.faithnform.com.

 

About Studio A, Inc.:

 

Founded in 1989 by Whitney Powers, AIA, Studio A, Inc. is an award-winning, full-service architecture firm located in downtown Charleston, SC. The firm proposes that the responsibility of architecture is to cultivate a language of form that promotes a sustainable culture and landscape, and that touches the emotions of delight, surprise and wonder. From cutting-edge contemporary architecture to the preservation and restoration of historic homes, structures and sites, Studio A is committed to an interactive relationship between the natural and built environments, conservation of energy and natural resources, and an appreciation for a “sense of place” where living, working and playing are connected with the specific idiosyncrasies of culture, climate and natural landscape where they take place. For more information visit www.studioa-architecture.com.


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Slow Food & A Small Footprint: Charleston Architect Serves Up “Green” Options

Whitney Powers, AIA

Whitney Powers, AIA

March 30, 2009 (CHARLESTON, SC) – Want to eat and live well in harmony with the natural environment? “Green” architect Whitney Powers, AIA, of Studio A, Inc, in Charleston served up solutions for reducing your home’s carbon footprint during Slow Food Charleston’s “Spring Pot Luck” dinner held Sunday, March 29, at the Circular Congregational Church in downtown Charleston.

Powers was the featured speaker for an event that celebrates “the pleasures of our bountiful Low Country spring produce.” Participants bring culinary dishes to share that are made of fresh, locally available food.

One of the city’s primary leaders in sustainable design, Whitney Powers used the new “green” Sunday School addition at the historic church on Meeting Street to point out principles of sustainable architecture – principles that can apply to anyone’s home.

A modern building within the historic church campus, the Sunday School building features certified woods (ensuring that the wood comes from a responsibly managed forest); salvaged, recycled and locally available materials; a geothermal heating and cooling system; rainwater collection cisterns; low water usage plumbing; natural ventilation and day-lighting; a deep roof overhang to protect the southern exposure and save energy; a vegetated roof; a constant indoor/outdoor connection via porches and exterior circulations paths; and overall durable construction.

“The various examples implemented in the addition can be departures for what we might consider for our own homes,” she said.

Powers worked with fellow “green” architect Frank Harmon, FAIA, of Raleigh, North Carolina, on the addition to downtown Charleston’s oldest church and the renovation of Lance Hall. She has also designed a variety of other sustainable structures throughout her career, including a residence on Johns Island in Charleston that features all of the same “green” principles as the Sunday School facility.

Besides more professional awards she’s received over the years for her work, Powers commitment to sustainable design saw her crowned as a “green goddess” in Skirt! Magazine last fall. Her work has also been featured in numerous magazines and on HGTV. For more information, visit www.studioa-architecture.com.

“Slow Food” is a global, grassroots movement whose members promote “a world in which all people can eat food that is good for them, good for the people who grow it, and good for the planet.” To learn more, visit www.slowfoodusa.org.

There is no cost to attend Slow Food Charleston’s dinners but guests are encouraged to bring a dish to share with the group. For more info contact caroleaddlestone@mindspring.com or call her at 843-225-4307.