Architects Who Walk the Walk

How Architects are using their own spaces to demonstrate their design philosophies
By Wendy Brunner
1 AIA LU/Elective; 0.1 ICC CEU; 0.1 IACET CEU*; 1 AIBD P-CE; AAA 1 Structured Learning Hour; This course can be self-reported to the AANB, as per their CE Guidelines; AAPEI 1 Structured Learning Hour; This course can be self-reported to the AIBC, as per their CE Guidelines.; MAA 1 Structured Learning Hour; This course can be self-reported to the NLAA.; This course can be self-reported to the NSAA; NWTAA 1 Structured Learning Hour; OAA 1 Learning Hour; SAA 1 Hour of Core Learning

Learning Objectives:

  1. List three design strategies that create a secret garden-type effect at the BNIM offices.
  2. Describe how Gensler uses analytics to inform design decisions for their own offices.
  3. State two areas, beyond office space, WeWork is expanding into.
  4. List three properties of the Accoya cladding used for the offices of Dylan Kyle Architects.

This course is part of the Business and Technology of Architecture Academy

This course is part of the Business & Technology of Architecture Academy

Below are a set of links to building type studies from Architectural Record, which are in-depth analyses of particular kinds of buildings, with photos, drawings, specifications, detailed descriptions, and design solutions. Click on each link below, read the article then complete the quiz to earn your credit and certificate of completion.

One of the most effective forms of leadership is to lead by example. Architects and designers build their careers around their design philosophies, imparting these ideas on their clients and projects. This course features architectural firms that have walked the walk by implementing design approaches recommended to their clients into their own office spaces.

BNIM Offices at Crown Center by BNIM
Learn how BNIM turned a 1970s Brutalist building into a secret garden by creating a strong indoor-outdoor connection. Now BNIM leads by example, showing other potential tenants what’s possible once the old and outdated features are stripped away.
Charles Linn, FAIA

Perkins+Will Offices by Perkins+Will
With leases expiring in several major offices, Perkins+Will took the opportunity to lead by example, pushing the boundaries of workspace design.
Heather Corcoran

Gensler’s New Workplace
On the frontline of workplace evolution for more than 15 years, Gensler uses its own offices as a laboratory to demonstrate the principles and research it applies to client projects.
David Sokol

Recycled Wood in Ashley McGraw Architects Office Earns LEED Silver Certification
Practicing what it preaches—sustainability—Ashley McGraw Architects sources a recycled gym floor for the main paths in its Syracuse, New York, office as an example of its work and design philosophy.
Leslie Clagett

Dillon Kyle Architects Finds Unique Cladding Material in Modified Timber
For its new home in the Houston neighborhood of Montrose, Dillon Kyle Architects chose Accoya modified timber as its cladding material. The firm created an eye-catching leaf design that serves as a showpiece of its work.
Sheila Kim

Bjarke Ingels Joins WeWork as Chief Architect
Flexible coworking space designer WeWork recently announced a new Manhattan headquarters and a new chief architect. For a company that’s had good design as part of its mission from the beginning, it’s sure to be groundbreaking.
Erin Hudson

Knowledge Matters: Eleven Tools to Reorient and Expand the Architectural Profession
Ben van Berkel and Caroline Bos of Amsterdam-based UNStudio have put forth a guide that not only serves as a record of its own practice and approaches to design but also acts as a primer, leading architects from design in the service of single buildings to displaying expertise in a widening range of tasks.
Anthony Vidler

‘20centchallenge’ Promotes Gender Pay Equality in Design Professions
Adam Rolston and business partners Drew Stuart and Gabrial Benroth launched the 20centchallenge to address gender-based pay inequality in the profession.
Miriam Sitz

Daniels Building by NADAAA
NADAAA, a firm known for its adventurous and unabashed approach, created a dialogue between the historic and the contemporary in its design for this building housing the John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design at the University of Toronto.
Suzanne Stephens

WeWork Paris

Photo © Benoit Florencon

WeWork LaFayette in Paris

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Originally published in June 2021