HOK at the TxA Convention

The Texas Society of Architects (TxA) hosted their 75th Annual Convention and Design Expo in Houston this year. HOK’s architect interns in Houston and Dallas got to take advantage of a wonderful learning opportunity while volunteering for the convention!

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In exchange for monitoring three educational sessions, the volunteers were granted complimentary registration to the convention. Their tasks included helping the presenters set up, introducing the speakers, collecting surveys and ensuring a smooth session. HOK provided time for the volunteers to monitor sessions and attend the convention as part of their professional growth and development.  All attendees will be presenting their learning experiences from the convention at an internal bi-weekly technical meeting.

HOKers Janis Brackett, also the current AIA Houston …

HOK Net-Zero Energy Design Competition: Feedback Hydronics

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Five designers from HOK’s St. Louis office – Brian Ballok, Lauren Field, Christoph Ibele, Brad Liebman and Leslie Wheeler – competed in the firm-wide Net Zero Design Competition as the team “Feedback Hydronics.”

The net-zero competition challenged HOK’s teams to create a conceptual net-zero energy design for a building on a site in their local communities. Teams were required to use HOK’s Sustainable Analysis Tool to obtain climate data, set energy use intensity (EUI) targets and estimate the size of on-site renewable energy systems required to reach net-zero energy.

The Feedback Hydronics team chose to design a culinary school on a site south of downtown St. Louis in the LaSalle …

St. Louis Team Tours 700 Market Project Site

Thanks to Jason Pierce, project architect in St. Louis, for this post.

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HOK’s Aimee Rowbottom, project manager, and Tom Kaczkowski, project lighting designer, share interesting facts about the 700 Market building. It is the youngest building on the National Historic Registry, sat vacant for approximately 10 years and contained more than 150,000 bricks, including 20,000 special radial and angle bricks.  

A group from HOK’s St. Louis office toured a current project at 700 Market in downtown St. Louis. HOK is part of the team updating the building originally designed by Philip Johnson and John Burgee for the General American Life Insurance Company.

The building opened in 1975 but has been vacant since 2004, when General American moved …

Hospitality at the Workplace

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During the past five years, the worlds of hospitality and corporate real estate have undergone an incredible transformation. The traditional approach toward real estate asset management has shifted to a focus on offerings that accommodate mobility, changing demographics and technology.

In the past, hotels approached their planning and visioning process by looking at brand standards and identifying a suitable theme based on the destination’s local culture. Similarly, companies relied on space allocation metrics to identify the amount of support spaces needed per employee and to balance the number of offices and workstations.

Recently, however, clients from both sectors are looking for innovative ways to respond to the demands of the new economy. Randa Tukan and …

Happy buildingSMART Day!

Five years ago on November 5, 2009, we celebrated the retirement of “CAD” and a complete shift of thinking towards building information modeling (BIM). Back in 2009, “CAD” came to be synonymous with AutoCAD software and we touted “BIM” as representative of a broader design and delivery strategy. In the years since, BIM has become somewhat synonymous with Revit software (no offense intended to other great software developers).

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Now, we encourage our staff and the AECO industry to embrace an even broader concept – buildingSMART - which, in simple terms, strives for complete lifecycle implementation of BIM processes …

Global conversations at Greenbuild: Sustainability as a means of economic empowerment

Continuing on the Greenbuild highlights thread, I have to agree with Mara on how great a host city New Orleans was! Their story of resiliency and healthy restoration was not just brought to light in several of the sessions but also experientially apparent. IMG_8161

What stood out to me at Greenbuild this year? Definitely the expanded and inclusive focus on a global conversation especially as it relates to the realm of social sustainability in several parts of the developing world.

The topic of educating girls as a sustainable strategy to channelize emerging economies was brought up at the night of the opening plenary celebration and further emphasized next morning at the Women in …

HOK LA 6th Annual Halloween Contest

I can’t believe it has been 6 years since LA’s first Halloween costume contest.

This year we had some fierce competition.  We had over 40 people dress up!!  Not only did we have individual costumes, we encouraged the office to form groups for our TV Land theme.
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It’s amazing to see so many people participate, be so creative and have so much fun.
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Building Codes and Rating Systems: Carrots or Sticks?

Thanks to Anica Landreneau, director of Sustainable Consulting, for this guest post.

Landreneau Anica EventsGreenbuild is always a great time to meet up with clients, peers and industry leaders while learning about the latest developments in LEED certification, product manufacturing and performance standards.  I went to Greenbuild to do all of those things, but also to speak on a panel about the District of Columbia’s adoption of the International Green Construction Code (IgCC). My fellow panelists were Fulya Kocak, director of sustainability at Clark Construction, and Dave Epley, green building and sustainability coordinator for the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA).

In 2006, Washington, DC, passed the Green

Let’s Get Carving at the Job Site!

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This Halloween, Skanska’s West Memorial Place project site in Houston hosted a pumpkin carving contest.  Team HOK took on the challenge at the job site and created this sharp entry! Shout out to HOK Houston’s carving team, Chris Heikkila and Ricardo George, and designer Kathrin Brunner.

 

Greenbuild’s Health Datapalooza

The Greenbuild Conference and Expo is always one of my favorite, albeit the busiest, weeks all year. This one was no exception. New Orleans was a great host city: the weather was perfect, the food was plentiful and the southern hospitality made us all feel warm and fuzzy inside (or was that all the Sazeracs they kept pushing our way?).

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Greenbuild took New Orleans by storm Oct. 21-24.

City sights aside, my favorite part of the week was the consistent emphasis on health impacts, research, and metrics. I attended the daylong Materials and Health Summit, then participated in several sessions related to health issues.  The overarching message was that the green building …

HOK Teams Volunteer at Architecture for Humanity New York’s Day of Impact

Thanks to Richard Rivera and Marisa Caban for contributing to this post.

Last Saturday, HOK’s New York office participated in Architecture for Humanity New York’s first annual Day of Impact with two teams of volunteers. The event consisted of one-day service projects in different sites around the city to help support communities in need.

HOK Impact Groups

One HOK crew joined over 250 other participants to help rebuild homes in Far Rockaway, a neighborhood that was devastated by Hurricane Sandy two years ago. HOK’s New York office has a history of volunteering in the Rockaways, so it was disappointing for some participants to see that there are still so many families in need two …

IFMA World Workplace 2014

IFMA’s World Workplace 2014 annual conference and exposition took place September 17-19 in New Orleans. The conference was well-attended, with more than 1,000 industry professionals traveling to New Orleans to attend the conference and enjoy the city’s amazing food and music.

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Several HOK professionals participated. Lisa Brinkman and Cheryl Jefferies, part of HOK On-Site Services, attended the event. Leigh Stringer, Isilay Civan, Sofia Fonseca and Eva Garza participated as speakers.

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Open House Chicago 2014

IMG_0020 Karen Osborn discussing the Obama Presidential Library submission

For the second year in a row HOK’s Chicago office participated in the Chicago Architecture Foundation’s annual Open House Chicago. For two days, our Chicago employees gave tours of the office space, showcased HOK projects and product samples and provided insights into daily life at HOK.

IMG_0009 Jaclyn Lash guiding her tour group throughout the office

New this year, we set up our conference rooms to showcase interior project samples, HOK Product Design samples, the Living Building Challenge Collaborative: Chicago Competition (a first place win) and the Obama Presidential Library submission.

Guests were very pleased with …

Designing the Ultimate Workplace: Reflections from WORKTECH 14 West Coast

Gordon WrightThanks to Gordon Wright, director of HOK’s global Consulting practice, for this guest post.

As I paced back and forth in the San Francisco airport waiting for my Friday afternoon flight, which had been delayed by four hours, I decided to do something productive with my extra time and record a few thoughts from the one-day WORKTECH 14 West Coast conference I had just participated in.

With themes ranging from the blurring of physical and virtual space to the city as the ultimate platform of innovation, the conference revolved around the future of space in the workplace. This is not necessarily a new topic, but certainly on the …

Chicago-Style Carving Contest

HOK Chicago hosted our second annual pumpkin carving contest today in the HOKafe. Take a look at our creepy creations!

Evil Pumpkin House First Place – Evil Pumpkin House

Jack Skellington Second Place – Jack Skellington

Chicago Skyline Chicago Skyline

Baku Flame Towers Baku Flame Towers

 

Office Carnival Raises $35,000+ for United Way

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In HOK’s St. Louis office Oct. 6 through 10 was the United Way Fair, a week-long campaign benefiting the United Way of Greater St. Louis. The campaign raised $35,219.84- more than $5,000 over goal- through pledge donations, lunches, a silent auction, games, a bake sale and raffles.

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This year’s theme was the United Way Fair, so a mini carnival was set-up in the office Thursday during lunch. It included a cakewalk, lollipop tree and a “pick-a-duck” pond. There was even a Wii with carnival games!

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Thank you …

Celebrating 30 Years with HOK

The Gulf Coast region congratulates Gary Marsh, engineering practice leader, on his 30-year HOK anniversary!

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Thank you Gary for your client commitment, design perfection and plumbing group leadership through the years. You have proven to be an important part of our success and we look forward to your continued contributions.

 

 

 

New Ocean Friendly Garden Designed for Loma Vista Elementary

Sean Robinson - Loma Vista School

Pictured above (from left to right) at the dedication of the garden: Sean Robinson (HOK), Jesse Doty (Clark Construction) and Ryan Shirah (Clark Construction).

Loma Vista students now have a new ocean friendly, drought-tolerant landscape design that allows for the capture of rainwater and beautifies their school. Many people from local companies came together as contributors to help this project happen, including several members of Clark’s on-site personnel and HOK’s Sean Robinson. After an old tree had to be removed from the property, the school was chosen by the Midtown Ventura Community Council’s “Adopt-A-School Program” as the recipient of this improvement project.

From augers to shovels and mulch to …

HOK’s Justin Ping Wins First Prize in International Design Workshop Competition

Justin Ping, a student intern in HOK’s Dallas office, recently returned from a two-week long student trip to China, where he was working on a five-day competition for the International Design Workshop on Waterfront Leisure, Recreation, and Sustainability in Zhengzhou, China.  The competition was composed of three teams, each with a mix of students and professionals from the University of Michigan, Beijing University of Civil Engineering and Architecture, and SPD Planning Design Corporation.

Each team developed proposals for a large park/commercial district in Zhengzhou, one of China’s rapidly developing cities.  The proposals were then presented to the client, as well as local government officials, and the workshop/presentations were documented and aired by the local media. The rate of growth in central China is …

USC Architectural Guild – Engage! with HOK!

This past summer, HOK’s Los Angeles office had the pleasure of hosting an event for USC Architectural Guild – Engage! .

The Engage! series is essentially an open house event that provides an opportunity for students, interns, architects, engineers and other allied professionals in the Los Angeles region to catch up with old friends, meet new ones, exchange and generate ideas, and learn about the host firm’s expertise and work.  Oh, and to have a good time!

(To piggy back on Laura‘s post) HOK Los Angeles’ Thomas Knittel was the featured speaker in this event.

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Marketing Principal, Alicia Wachtel kicked off the event with an introduction to HOK – what we do, how long we have …

ARTIC Construction Update

It’s been a while since I’ve updated on the Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center aka ARTIC….

Last you have all seen, we were at the topping out ceremony… But we are getting to the home stretch..

All the ETFE have been inflated, trees are getting planted, finishes are getting installed, this is when we really get busy!

But in the meantime, let’s get a side by side comparison on what we designed and what is actually getting built!

The arrival

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Future location of ARTIC’s first tenantThe Lost Bean.

Lualdi and HOK Product Design Launch Half + Half Door Collection

HOK Product Design recently celebrated the U.S. launch of a new collection of doors developed in collaboration with Lualdi, a premier Italian manufacturer of luxury doors, interior furnishings and modular systems. Culture + Commerce helped bring together the two firms. The doors in the Half + Half collection have been specifically designed to fit in small spaces, where swing and sliding doors are not feasible. The new door swings and pivots to open into a “half-in-half-out” position. Held at the Sandow headquarters in New York, the launch event displayed the three doors in the collection, designed by the HOK Product Design team and manufactured by Lualdi in its family-owned factory near Milan, Italy.

Half and Half Image: Culture +

HOK’s Yiselle Santos Selected to Christopher Kelley Leadership Development Program

Santos_Yiselle400Yiselle Santos, a senior design professional in HOK’s Washington, DC, office, has been selected as one of 16 scholars making up the 2015 class for the Christopher Kelley Leadership Development (CKLD) Program. The first of its kind for the AIA DC chapter, the program was launched in 2013 with the goal of training and nurturing the next generation of leaders.

The CKLD program takes place over nine individual half-day sessions and covers eight core skills: marketing and business development, office and firm management, presentation and public speaking, professional ethics and the law, philanthropy and board involvement, community service, industry trends and the future of the practice. Each topic is …

Biomimicry for green building: Harnessing the genius of nature to help conserve water

Thomas Knittel blog post

Last Tuesday night, HOK in Los Angeles’ Thomas Knittel took part in a panel hosted by the Westside Branch of the US Green Building Council in Los Angeles on the subject of water challenges, looking to nature for solutions – biomimetic approaches to water conservation.

As of July, over 58% of areas in California have entered the highest, or exceptional, stage of drought. In addition to the ongoing social, economic, and environmental costs of wasting water, new green building frameworks such as the Living Building Challenge are emphasizing Net-Zero or closed-loop water systems.

Thomas spoke about biomimicry, the emulation of elements of nature for the purpose of solving complex …

DC Interiors “Boot Camp”

boot camp 2Taking advantage of a beautiful afternoon as an excuse for “team bonding,” Vincent Ng, director of Interiors in HOK’s Washington, DC, office, led his team in a 5K run down the C&O Canal last Friday.  The path was marked by Amy “Sporty Spice” Fabry, who ran ahead and back to mark the route before the rest of us could make it three feet.  Despite client deadlines and lots of other work on their plate, the interiors team took advantage of some time away from the office and burned off some serious calories to boot.  Many folks hadn’t run in years, but …

A Mindful Workplace

A Conversation With Kevin Chen, Director of Planning for HOK in Shanghai

The World of Workplace Is Changing

Making Chicago a Greener Place: Green Apple Day of Service

LEED Lessons Learned at Healthcare Design Conference

See more