“A lot of development internationally is at a much larger scale (i.e. neighborhood scale vs. building scale). At this scale, it is particularly important that the design solution responds to the specific context and needs of the region. This session addressed this critical issue of the …
Fun was had by all at the HOK Oktoberfest Family Picnic. Games of tug of war, water balloon toss, a stein holding contest, and the ultimate tricycle obstacle course took place. Luckily there were seasonal craft brews, a great food truck, and a tropical snow cone vender to keep us fueled up for the competitions!
The fun and creativity continued at the Houston CANstruction build-off. HOK’s team donated over $2000 to the event which funds the Houston Food Bank AND we got to build a formula 1 race car out of canned goods! The awards ceremony takes place on November 23rd , so keep your …
According to the USGBC, the LEED Fellow program ”designates the most exceptional professionals in the green building industry.” Mara becomes one of only 128 Fellows – a very small percentage of the approximately 180,000 LEED professionals across the globe. The LEED Fellow is a relatively new honor; this year’s cohort represents only the third class of Fellows. Applicants must demonstrate a minimum of a 10-year history of “exceptionality” across four of five dimensions of green building: technical proficiency, leadership, education and mentoring, commitment and service, and …
Earlier this year I was lucky enough to visit a unique site belonging to our client in the Seychelles, a 115-island country scattered across the Indian Ocean. We were there to consider development on an island owned by our client.
The Seychelles is a large archipelago of granite and coral islands about 2,000 miles south of Dubai and 1,000 miles east of mainland Africa. The economy is largely dependent on tourism and relies on the beauty and protection of its natural environment.
On Saturday November 2nd, HOK Houston along with other members of the Houston design, engineering and construction community, participated in the second annual ACE Mentor Program Build it Forward event. The event was designed to raise scholarship funds for the Houston chapter of the ACE Mentor Program while giving students and their mentors an opportunity to give back to their community.
This year teams constructed convertible picnic tables that function as benches or a full size picnic table when converted. The teams built approximately 15 composite picnic tables that will be donated to local charitable organizations.
Thanks to Daniel Wei in our Beijing office for providing this Q+A with Hong Kong Director of Operations Danny Wong, RIBA.
What is the outlook for architecture and design in China?
DW: Over the past two decades, I have witnessed great changes resulting from rapid developments across China. The cityscapes and landscape of many cities and regions have been transformed. This provided the opportunities of a lifetime for architects and design professionals. I believe urbanization and urban development will continue in China, and will continue to provide wonderful opportunities. The market will be stronger than ever.
China is a vast country with a huge population. Currently, the most developed …
HOK represented their bowling skills amidst whacky bowling rules and silly scorecard names to contend with. With bowlers named “Citrix nightmare, BIMMY Hog, and Navisworks,” it was truly an architectural themed fundraiser that challenged us to bowl like zombies, on one foot, and with our eyes closed!
The 5th annual bowling fundraiser raised funds for the Texas Architects Committee (TAC) which promotes the interest of architects in Texas and raises funds to make campaign contributions to those seeking election or re-election to political office.
Big THANKS to our very own Janis Brackett for arranging our participation in this fun event!
Betsy Nurse, Assoc. IIDA, is HOK’s director of interior design in Atlanta and an experienced project manager. Her other focus is business development, a role she has honed by cultivating relationships across the real estate community for the past 17 years. She is the face of HOK in Atlanta corporate real estate.
What do you love about design?
BN: It a wonderful thing to be able to learn about all kinds of new businesses as a design consultant. Discovering our clients’ business strategies and organizational goals is one of my favorite parts of the job, but there is nothing like being part of a team that delivers …
HOK in London’s very own Femi Oresanya, rugby coach for the Juniors, led the mayor in a ‘training’ session!
Femi got involved in this campaign as a father (his two youngest sons train here), a passionate rugby player, (he is an ex rugby player for the Harlequins in the pre-professional days) a school governor and a general sports enthusiast. He is part of the SCRFC committee involved in campaigning for this …
After practicing for 20 years as an architect in California and Hawaii, William Paluch, AIA, was ready for a fresh challenge. Based in HOK’s Shanghai office, Bill now faces several new challenges each day as design director for HOK in China.
What is your vision for HOK in China?
WP: My vision is to deliver extraordinary work to our clients and communities. This may seem like a general approach but we focus on the long-term contributions our work can bring to the built environment. We want to understand the needs of clients as well as of the communities in which our projects are being built.
HOK is one of 23 teams competing in the architectural and engineering coed softball league this year. With the recent growth of the office, the team is a fun way to meet outside the office environment and enjoy a hot dog and cold beverage at the same time. As one could imagine, the rivalry runs deep in the profession and it’s evident with teams we play against showing fierce competition. The HOK team plays double-headers every Monday evening and I’m happy to report the team’s first victory was almost a blow-out with a score of 12 to 1!
Paul arrived in HOK’s San Francisco office in 1997. He spent two years mentoring under then-HOK president Bill Valentine before heading east to direct design in the firm’s new Atlanta office. In 2006, he returned to the West Coast to lead the San Francisco studio.
Paul lives in the Twin Peaks neighborhood, on the city’s tallest hill, in a Bauhaus-influenced early modernist house he shares with his partner, Rick Freeman, and their dog, Georgia.
This month we honored Ed Abboud with a lunch event to show our support of his great accomplishment of 40 years with HOK, YES 40! Along with his HOK family, Ed’s wife, children and grandchildren were able to join the celebration and coincidently it was also 40 years ago that day his daughter was born! He shared stories about his journey through which he has observed the advances of technology and the sustainability of construction with the less experienced staff, which includes all but a handful of us!
Congratulations Ed, and THANK YOU for your continued excellence.
In his own words, he express his thanks below.
“Your thoughts, e-mails, words, cards, hugs and gifts have truly touched me …
Guest Post By Angela Zwink, HOK Visual Communications, Houston
As the Knowledge Manager of HOK Visual Communications, I was really curious to know where we fall as a group. Are we collectively right-brain or left-brain dominant? I quickly ran through the personality attributes that define the left brainers and right brainers and this is what I found, starting with the left brain:
Words and Language — Check. I have to say we are pretty good in languages as almost half of our team is bilingual. In Houston, additionally, we all are slowly learning a new word everyday in Espanol from our very friendly office custodian.
Logic and Critical Thinking — Check. We have located and programmed a …
Deborah Fuller, IIDA, LEED AP BD+C, ID+C and Mara Baum,AIA, LEED AP BD+C of HOK are part of the Health Product Declaration (HPD) Collaborative team, which promotes manufacturer disclosure of the chemical makeup of building products through the HPD standard format. Ultimately, this will allow designers to better understand and make decisions about the adverse health effects of the chemicals in products that compromise employee health such as PVC in several building materials, fire retardants in insulations and upholstered products, formaldehyde in composite wood and millwork, and phthalates in cleaning products to name a few. To accomplish these goals, Deborah and Mara are dedicating time outside of the office to perform research because they feel so passionately about …
This once was a working metal factory that produced gold and silver bars and coins. There also was a public function where people exchanged gold or silver dust for coins and bars.
To organize the building program, we swept away all the unfortunate interventions that had altered the building since the federal government stopped using it as a mint in the 1930s. To understand how the renovated building …
Peter Ruggiero, AIA, is a design principal based in Chicago and serving the Chicago, Florida and Texas practices. Since joining HOK in May 2011, he has led the design of several major projects. His favorite question is, “Why?”
How can architects be leaders in addressing society’s challenges?
PR: It is fairly easy to design attractive buildings using a toolbox. But that isn’t enough.
To create work of real merit, our solutions must have an embedded intelligence. Rather than responding to preconceived notions about what looks good and works, a solution should solve unique challenges. If we do this, the value will be intrinsically embedded in the building’s DNA. This is where …
Over a year ago, Kristy (HOK Miami) and I decided to book a trip to Peru… fast
forward to June 2013, and we have returned from 10 days of majestic beauty and
historical ruins. The tour included Lima, Chinchero, Sacred Valley of the Incas
(Urubamba and Ollantaytambo), Cusco, and Puno (with a boat ride on Lake
Titicaca and a visit to the floating islands of Uros).
Along the way to Puno we had the opportunity to stop and visit a local elementary
school. Prior to our trip we had collected school supplies which we were able
to hand deliver to the school children. Thanks to all of you that donated items and help put
a smile on these young deserving children’s faces!
“I arrived a few weeks before the stock market crashed,” she says.
In addition to leading the DC interiors group, Heath heads HOK’s law office design specialists firm-wide. She has worked with more than 20 law firms during her career and is currently involved in more than 10 different law office projects across the US and internationally.
How did the DC interiors practice manage to grow during a down economy?
CH: When I started, most of our interior design work was supporting the …
The seven-story medical school will bring 2,000 UB faculty, staff and students daily to downtown Buffalo and, at more than 500,000 square feet, will be one of the largest buildings constructed in Buffalo in decades.
Three days after Hurricane Sandy barreled into the East Coast last October, HOK’s project team was scheduled to have a meeting …
Whether it’s waking up to a surprise spring snowstorm in Beijing or being served fried baby eel at lunch, what HOK’s Chris Fannin most enjoys about living in Asia is “responding to the unexpected on an almost hourly basis.”
Chris, who moved from St. Louis to Hong Kong in 2010, wears three hats for HOK. He is part of the management team leading the firm’s Asia Pacific practice, he leads the region’s planning practice and, with Suzette Goldstein, he is co-director of HOK’s global planning practice. As Chris moves between these three overlapping roles, he says each enriches the other. “We have …
“Justin is a rare individual whose combination of deep technical knowledge and a sensitive eye uniquely position him as a special professional. His leadership brings visions to reality; his dedication improves the public realm.” – Paul Woolford, Design Principal, HOK in San Francisco
A licensed architect, Justin has been with HOK for five years. In both his personal and professional activities, Justin is motivated by engagement with the physical world. A love of materials and making things drove him to become a successful engineer, and further to …
For 20 weeks this past winter, HOK’s Chicago office was proud to host local high school students from all over the city as part of the Architecture, Construction and Engineering (ACE) Mentor Program, an integral community program that inspires students to pursue careers in design and construction. Beginning last October, HOK mentors, in partnership with Halvorson, Lend Lease and GSA, worked with students once a week for two hours to develop an original design project. The students presented their concept to peers and esteemed members of the community at a special awards ceremony at the UIC Forum (an HOK designed building) earlier this month.
We’re going to find out….. I am immensely honored to be selected by the AIA President as a member of the newly formed Sustainability and Health Advisory Committee. The committee consists of some amazing talent from around the sustainable industry. These individuals have all been my mentors and inspiration for the past 8 years and I am looking forward to the opportunity to work with them on the future of sustainable education and training at the AIA. Although sustainability is becoming more and more of a mainstream design process, as an industry, we are not achieving our goals and we have A LOT of work to do. I know that …
Thanks to Dominick Gallegos in our Chicago office for passing along this guest post on Senior Designer David Genc’s recent speaking engagement at the 4th Annual Bisnow Chicago Multifamily Summit.
Several of HOK Chicago’s interior designers and architects recently attended the 4th Annual Chicago Multifamily Summit, hosted by Bisnow. To kick off the events covering the future of residential development, HOK Chicago’s David Genc, a Senior Designer and Residential thought leader, delivered the opening remarks to more than 450 of the foremost real estate owners, developers, and financiers from Chicago and abroad.
David delivered a message on how residential design will have to adapt to an ever-changing and increasingly diverse demographic while building …
Another successful HOK Structure’s Pi day has come and nearly gone as I write this. As always it was an enjoyable event for all; we brought pie, we ate pie, we recited pi. This was the St. Louis Structural Engineering group’s sixth annual event to celebrate the mathematical constant pi, an irrational and transcendental number represented by the Greek letter “π”.
To celebrate, we hosted an event inviting colleagues in our office to bring in a pie and participate in a “Best In Show” pie contest (and of course to eat pie) in addition to hosting the “most recited digits of pi” contest. Winners were awarded with …
When he was six years old, Todd Bertsch, AIA, moved with his family to Atlanta from Pocatello, Idaho. Through what he calls “serendipity,” Todd never left. He earned his architecture degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology and has spent his entire professional career in Atlanta. In 2008, he joined HOK as design director in our Atlanta office.
Todd and his wife, also an architect, live with their 11-year-old daughter in a house they designed together near Piedmont Park in Atlanta’s vibrant Virginia Highland neighborhood.
“I have seen Atlanta undergo a tremendous transformation over the past 30 years,” says Todd. “It is still young compared to Paris or …
All of this talk about Yahoo, mobility, flexibility in the workplace, and the list goes one, has sparked some interesting dialogue. There are those that see working from home as beneficial not only to an employee’s well-being and job satisfaction, but also to productivity, reduction of churn, greater efficiency, and slimmer real estate costs. However, there are also those that see a lack of innovation, difficulty managing and measuring productivity, and missed opportunities for serendipitous encounters and communication. Accenture’s Survey Results for IWD2013
But we have tasted the freedom that technology offers (as well as the tethering – who checks email before even getting out of bed …