American Paint Horse Association Opens Headquarters in Fort Worth Stockyards District

Fort Worth, TX – On February 28th, 2020, VLK Architects celebrated the opening of the new international headquarters of the American Paint Horse Association (APHA), located in Texas’ historic Fort Worth Stockyards on Mule Alley. Perfectly aligned to its Western aesthetic, the new APHA Headquarters accommodates revolutionary learning and retail components. Features include a retail store consisting of APHA merchandise, a grain-bin theater, historical Paint Horse artifacts, The Rebecca Baker Legacy Loft (honoring APHA’s Hall of Fame and history), and ample office space.

“APHA has such a strong brand beginning with the culture and lifestyle of their members and employees, that there is truly no better place than the Stockyards for their office to reside,” said Marissa Tang, Interior Designer, VLK Architects. “The historic nature of the barn allowed us to incorporate APHA’s own story into the interior design seamlessly. As a bonus, this new location will also bring foot traffic to the retail storefront and offers a new walkable experience for visiting members.”

The design showcases the APHA’s aesthetic by utilizing the barn’s existing clerestories, exposed ceilings, original clay tiles, and exposed brick walls. Design elements such as sliding barn doors, industrial steel finishes, reclaimed wood, concrete floors, natural textiles and art with accent colors derived from paint horse scenery, and even a grain bin theater and stair were intentionally incorporated. Designers preserved elements from the historical structures in the design of the space, including the original brick, metal fire doors in the loft space, distinctive concrete and metal columns, and more.

“VLK was super responsive to our questions, explained each step and kept us informed on progress,” said Billy Smith, EDD, Executive Director, American Paint Horse Association. “They were on target with a design that was sophisticated but embraced our western heritage and the historically significant and sensitive structure within which we’re working.”

The APHA was among the first businesses to open on Mule Alley in the Fort Worth Stockyards. The structures were built in 1912 and had housed the area’s horses and mules for decades Majestic Realty and the Hickman Group renovated these barns as part of a 70-acre revitalization of the Stockyards. In addition to housing the APHA, Mule Alley will feature numerous restaurants, retail, and corporate office space.

Additional sources and information about the new APHA offices:

About VLK Architects: With offices in Austin, Dallas, El Paso, Fort Worth, and Houston, Texas, VLK Architects provide architecture, planning, and interior design services to K‐12, higher education, corporate, and institutional clients throughout Texas.
About the American Paint Horse Association (APHA): The APHA is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded. APHA promotes, preserves, and provides meaningful experiences with Paint Horses.