Sal Gimbert, a structural engineering technician in our St. Louis office, posted this photo on Facebook the other day. Shared here, with her permission:
Using my grandfather’s (Alexander F. Newlands) slide rule this afternoon to get some work done from home. My mother and my grandmother passed it on to me as a Christmas gift this year. He was a civil engineer and ambidextrous. I never knew him, as he passed when my mother was two years old, but I feel influenced by him daily. Beauty in the smallest things. Powerful moment for me. Happy Holidays all!
This is a short post I’ve written as a guest contributor for a friend at Otto. Check out other amazing posts on design and products at 3Rings!
There’s an intrinsic dilemma that all architects and designers carry with them: the struggle with the idea of control. We lose precious sleep over the often unknowable outcomes of our projects.
An ever-present but less contemplated thought is the impact of those outcomes. While this also can be “unknowable,” designers can draw on evidence and research to predict the impacts of projects with more accuracy. From a business culture standpoint, we crave predictability. Yet, it rarely leaves room for growth, …
T’was a warm winter day in Houston when the 4th Annual Gingerbread Build-Off took place in Hermann Square. HOK’s team built a holiday version of James Turrell’s Skyspace that was made of green cake covered in parsley, white chocolate, ginger bread, and various candies.
Thanks to our builders and strategists:
Jasmine Brown, Deinte Dan-Princewill, Alex Lara and Leming Yang.
Candy Strategists: Lauren Flemister, Ashley Craig and Sara Bullington
…and those who came to support and vote!
Follow the link below to explore more on the built pavilion:
As you know, it’s Bike to Work month and the DC office is kicking butt. Today is no different, especially because it is national Bike to Work day. I counted 19 bicycles in the office, and that doesn’t include those people who parked outside or used Capital Bikeshare bikes (there is a station right outside the office). BTWD is practically religion in our office. First question everyone asks is, what swag did you get?! This is immediately followed by, “oh, I went to a different pit stop, we didn’t get that!” Today my top swag item was a “Bike Arlington” reflective vest, one-size-fits-giant-people.
So…for those of you who were wondering how our four teams …
Is it really possible that this is the FOURTH annual Design by Designers at HOK Washington, DC? Organized and hosted by fabulous Graphic Design Principal and Guru Jim Doussard (famous for the HOK monograph and salad bar potlucks, among other achievements), Design by Designers is an opportunity for HOK’s talented team to share our outside-the-office design pursuits over a frosty beverage and tasty snacks.
As you might expect, there were quite a few drawings and paintings, a few home improvements, but also a couple of “outside the box” design pursuits. Colin Benson, visualization specialist by trade, industrial designer by education, and bicycle-restorer by night brought in two amazing restored bicycles, including a bicycle built for …
I was curiously Google-image searching the term “female architect” one afternoon and the results were stereotypical as expected; hard hats inside finished buildings, abundant rolls of paper, every face with a huge smile and the occasional Zaha head shot (go girl!). Another observation was that every female is young and attractive; this made me wonder where that portrayal was conceived?
Soon after, I came across an article in February’s “Architect” magazine (p.29) stating that “Only about 3% of executives in major American corporations – including architecture firms- are women (according to McKinsey & Co.).”
I wasn’t so shocked; it’s a man’s world we’re infiltrating, and only for the last few generations. However, the …
The team included !melk., Urban Lab, Terry Guen Design Associates, Thirst, Zoe Ryan, Conservation Design Forum, HR&A Advisors, Magnusson Klemencic Associates, Sam Schwartz Engineering, Leni Schwendinger LIGHT projects, CMS Fountain Consultants, and Karin Bacon Enterprises.
We always see (and drool over) these competition entries, but very rarely do you get to peel back the covers and see what really goes into the preparation of these submissions, so we thought we’d give …
Let it never be said that San Francisco HOK-ers don’t know how to have a good time. Take a look at the lineup of events from this fall – and you’ll agree that we can party like rockstars!
October: Wellness Fair: We kicked off the festivities this fall with a health fair to make sure we were all medically certified to have a good time. Practitioners from the Pure Wellness Intl Team, Kaiser and Concentra were at hand to answer questions, along with posture and stress screening, chiropractic advice and healthy snack samples.
October: Pumpkin Carving Contest: HOK SF then flexed its creative muscles with a pumpkin carving contest. Look below for the winners!
“Think About Presentation” – Oprah suggests that you format everything beautifully. I agree. For starters, do not EVER give your boss something that hasn’t been spell checked and read to make sure you didn’t say “panty” instead of “pantry.” She doesn’t want to see it, and she wants to …
On Thursday 22nd September, London’s property industry came together to celebrate the inaugural HOK London Annual Party on board HOK Airways. Having celebrated a number of successes and project milestones particularly in our Aviation sector, we chose this theme for our 2011 Annual Party. On the following evening we opened our doors to the public in celebration of the London Design Festival.
We wanted to celebrate 2011 with clients, partners, consultants supporters and journalists whom we have had the pleasure of working with through this challenging yet rewarding year.
Planning began in June and we made it just in time to register to be part of the London Design Festival. Weekly meetings were …
Power to the people – especially those who turned out to attend the Interior Design Regulation celebration August 4 honoring the successful efforts to keep the interior design profession regulated in the state of Florida (more info in 10 May 2011 post). The IIDA event featured guests Senator Jack Latvala, Senator Jim Norman, Senator Arthenia Joyner, and Representative Darryl Rouson. Special kudos to HOKer Kelly Betts for having such a STRONG voice throughout the debate!
More power to HOK and the exhibit we had at the ACA (American Corrections Association) conference in Orlando this week. We were represented by the JBU team and the amazing justice projects across HOK. I had the …
A local paper columnist interviewed HOKer Anna Vasquez, as he explored the option of bike commuting in the Florida summer heat. The humorous article featured some tips from Anna that I can relate to as a fellow commuter. I especially love the outfit tip – matching shoes are a must, but I must admit I forgot my entire dress once!
Okay, so I was trying to be alliterative… it’s not really a mockup, it’s the real thing! The first sign to attach to the Freno Raingarden System arrived today and will soon be installed at the pilot project here in downtown St Louis. This sign will help people to know what’s going on, the benefits of urban rain gardens, and to learn more about the system itself. Nice job, Matt, Jim, and Paul!
Also, we got to admire the sign against the backdrop of some wonderful jazz music in the center space, courtesy of Jazz St Louis. The three student musicians were in as a part of …
This place yields billions of dollars a “cartoon” and looks super fun to be at for 70 hours a week (sorry social life you may be replaced).
So, maybe a hospital, airport, or even a federal courthouse isn’t as profitable as a feature film but can it be? If we could create architecture and the world that surrounds us in a place that harbors creativity, can it be?
These images say it all – there are some very creative people at HOK!
Kim Frey, vice president and business manager has been with the firm for 30 years this month – what a huge accomplishment! The traditional 30th anniversary gift is Pearls but we decided to surprise her with aluminum, A LOT OF ALUMINUM! Besides, it’s much more shiny, flexible, affordable, and best of all- Recyclable!!!
Kim “sincerely wants to thank each of you for the pleasure of being part of this great group of professional for all these years, …
Not to brag…ok, to brag a little bit…the DC team is KICKING MAJOR BUTT in this year’s Cascade Bicycle challenge. We have two teams – and are in first and third place within the company, mileage-wise. Combined, well, it will be pretty darned tough to catch us – we’re over 2K miles!! We probably needed to do this as we might have trash-talked the other offices a little bit this year.
Today the New York office had the unique opportunity to learn about a subject that is a little off the beaten path of our usual lunch-time seminars. In an architectural office you are likely to have representatives speak to you about the latest advancements in spray-on fireproofing or sustainable glazing sources, but I was quite surprised when I received this invitation…
HOK’s own Joe Nocella – registered architect, firm-wide BIM leader, and custom bike shop proprietor – built a bicycle wheel right in front of us! In addition, he gave us a brief history of the bicycle and how their wheels have evolved. Really interesting stuff!
As a participant and devoted bike commuter, I am appalled by the ignorance that persists among drivers not wanting to share the road and acknowledging a bicycle as safe mode of transportation – that is as long as drivers are willing to cooperate.
I was browsing the local news online for an article to link with this post …
Florida State lawmakers are considering House Bill 5005, which would deregulate nearly 20 different professions. H.B. 5005 originally deregulated over thirty different professions, including Landscape Architecture, Geologists, and Surveyors and Mappers. Many professions were removed from the legislation prior to the Economic Affairs Committee meeting, however Interior design remains. Interior Design is the only profession in the bill which requires a college degree, experience, and a national exam.
As a registered interior designer at HOK, Kelly Betts has taken the opportunity to voice her concerns by speaking out at the Capitol in Tallahassee at the House of Representatives Economic Affairs subcommittee meeting and through the media on …
Let me introduce you to the women that keep the lights on at the Dallas office. Introducing LaCreta Waters(left) and Barbara Burr(right)! If you’ve been to the Dallas office, you have probably met one of them first. They’re the ones you talked to on the phone when you got lost coming from the airport. Then one of them told you how to not get lost in the labyrinth (the parking garage). About fifty percent of all questions that circulate the office are answered with, “I’m not sure, check with Barbara or LaCreta.”
I know what they do. They turn on the lights, open the door, answer the phone, make sure you …
We were excited to learn that, based on more than 300,000 customer service responses, Airports Council International has named Indianapolis International Airport the best regional airport in North America! It also has been honored as one of the USA’s 40 Customer Service Champions by J.D. Power and Associates. From the USA Today story: “As for the Indianapolis airport, it won in part because of its new design, but also for retail, food and beverage, check-in and an across-the-board good experience.”
Congratulations to the Indianapolis Airport Authority!
The new 1.2-million-sq.-ft. Colonel H. Weir Cook Terminal opened in November 2008. HOK St. Louis’ Ripley Rasmus remembers the genesis of the “big idea” for this striking …
Last weekend 7 HOKer’s from the Hong Kong office joined 700 other cyclists during the 4th Annual Waterfront Bike Ride for a Pollution Free Hong Kong. The route was approximately 20 miles long mostly along Victoria Harbor to promote and raise awareness to Hong Kong’s Planning Department about the importance of opening up the harbor front to leisure, transport and tourism to encourage a healthy lifestyle. Governments around the world have been investing in cycling as a sustainable mode of transport to improve air quality and to promote active and liveable cities.
Right now there isn’t one bike lane in the heart of Hong Kong.
“We reversed the way we might normally work in that we didn’t come up with hard line drawing solutions,” says Faubert. “We allowed the analysis to be done first. That would inform the design and the architecture would be developed out of that analysis. It was designing under the mantra that form follows performance.”
“We learned in the process that a zero emissions building can be surprisingly affordable,” says Rohlfing.
Einstein wrote that his faith in humanity is restored, whenever he sees a grown man riding a bike.
I’ve always liked that statement. There is a certain poetry to it.
There is also a certain poetry to a bike itself. It is a model of integrated design and thinking. Elegance of design, simplicity, refinement. Resopnsive and adaptable. Functional yet exhilerating. Sustainable, recyclable, efficient and practical. An engagement of all the senses – movement, sound, tactile sensation. Moreover, on the opertational side, are a series of individual parts, all performing at their optimum, to ensure success. And at the centre of it all – often overlooked by many architects and designers – is the person. Clearly, the bike is indeed a model we may choose to look to, when …
Barb Ciesla, vice president and leader of HOK’s Sustainable Design Consulting practice in Canada, talks about the Occupant Engagement Program™ offering that she and her team have developed in Toronto.
“We’re starting to work on the people end, which really came out of LEED for Existing Buildings. We were working on operations but we saw this gap and this group of people who wanted to be engaged but no mechanism to do that. So we have developed a program and it’s based on tools around psychology and sociology principles and community-based social marketing which have been shown to actually affect behavior change.”
So, as a design firm, you’d think we’d have the very most ergonomic workstations, right? In theory we do, but a good amount of “operator error” has made most of us hunch over like a bunch of monkeys!
As part of our ongoing Life Matters series (which addresses all kinds of good stuff from fitness to finance), our wonderful HR rep Pia Hill invited an ergonomics consultant in to help us identify and correct our problems. The wonderful women of Ergo Concepts, LLC, came in and shared a whole bunch of good stuff with us – and then came to our individual desks to evaluate our seating.
Here, Colin talks about the reasons it’s important to reduce the carbon emissions of our buildings and what the team led by HOK and The Weidt Group accomplished:
“We learned in the process that a zero emissions building can be surprisingly affordable. We worked with detailed energy models and cost estimates to determine that a 200,000-square-foot office building, just through good passive design and efficient systems selection, can save up to 76 percent of its energy without a large …