Ten St. Louis HOK staff members recently participated in a Habitat for Humanity Saint Louis build in Spanish Lake, Missouri. The HOK team worked on two of the five homes on the site, where the investment of a little sweat equity helped two soon-to-be homeowners get one step closer to settling into their new residence.
Charlie Lutz, a senior design professional in our St. Louis office, had a chance to participate in last month’s career fair at Mallinckrodt Academy of Gifted Instruction, where his son goes to school. The kids had fun learning what an architect does, and we suspect Charlie had just as much fun – if not more. Here’s what he shared from the experience:
“Everyone from Pre-K to 5th grade was there. People from all sorts of careers were represented: astronomer, electrician, personal trainer, financial planner, animal and hunger non-profit, meteorologist, architect, and even FBI agent.
“Several people brought things from their respective …
HOK’s St. Louis office capped off Earth Week with a volunteer effort at St. Louis Earth Day Festival at Forest Park.
The festival is the second-largest celebration in the country, with crowds of 30,000-40,000 people each year - many of which bike to the park. The volunteers managed the bike valet for the festival. They logged the names of people who biked in and kept their bikes safe until they were ready to leave.
Thanks to our volunteers and to the entire St. Louis office for a great Earth Week!
HOK volunteers Mackenzie McCulloch, Reagan Branham, Mike Chung, Brad Liebman, Tim Slazinik, Lauren Field and Alyse Garbisch.
HOK’s St. Louis office celebrated Earth Day all week with a series of office-wide events including a staff-wide Pecha Kucha luncheon. About a dozen professionals around the office each presented five slides in 20 seconds apiece on a wide range of topics centering on Earth Day.
Sustainable Design Leader Tim Gaidis talks about the 2014 AIA Committee on the Environment Top 10 award winners.
Lighting Designer Kathleen Hamilton challenges the staff to leave the lights off and enjoy natural daylighting.
Project Manager Maren Engelmohr shares her story of creating a LEED Platinum home for her …
HOK interior designer Kirsten Marklin learned first hand what the phrase “Boston Strong” means.
She recently ran in the Boston Marathon after qualifying last year in the her first ever marathon - the Kaiser Permanente Napa Valley Marathon in Napa Valley, California. She needed to finish in 3:35 to qualify, and achieved that easily with a time of 3:23.
For most, running 26.2 miles doesn’t sound like fun. But Marklin said the atmosphere in Boston was electric and she felt fortunate to be a part of such an important event.
“You couldn’t walk one block in that entire city without seeing the words ‘Boston Strong’ somewhere. It was a big year for Boston, …
The Aim High students pose for a group photo after spending the morning in HOK’s St. Louis office.
Members of HOK IMPACT recently met with 70 area middle school students in the Aim High St. Louis program to help them learn about architecture.
The 5th to 8th grade students spend the morning learning about HOK and what it means to be a professional architect, then broke into small work groups where they were challenged to think like an architect about a space they are very familiar with – their own …
Jan De Weer advises the group to not be afraid to self promote.
In the first of a year-long Careers by Design series, Senior Human Resources Manager Stacy Krell talked to the St. Louis office about “Taking Charge of Your Career!”
The session is part of an office initiative for 2014 in which professionals from around the office discuss topics ranging from general industry trends, looking in depth at ongoing and completed projects and career development.
Stacy’s overarching message to the staff was the need to take …
Happy New Year. Welcome to 2014. As of January 1st, Edison’s incandescent A-lamp (40w & 60w) is now considered “illegal,” while recreational marijuana use in Colorado is not. We have officially entered the new age.
You’ve probably been hearing about the incandescent light bulb ban for a while. 75w (and above) lamps have been gone for some time, but these lower wattage lamp bans are hitting home in a much more personal way. As part of this global sustainable firm, I am excited about the energy savings that will occur as people purchase new lamp alternatives. But as a person who enjoys (and …
Earlier this week, our St. Louis team participated in the Metropolitan Square building’s 25th anniversary celebration. Met Square is not only the tallest building in St. Louis; it’s also an HOK design from the 1980s and the home of our St. Louis office today.
The first building on this site was the Berthold mansion, built in 1829 when the site at 5th (now Broadway) and Pine was out in the country. Certainly, times have changed. The Berthold Mansion became the Democratic Party headquarters in 1859 and was the site of demonstrations during the Civil War. As the years passed and the city expanded …
Congratulations to the St. Louis Science Center, which is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the James S. McDonnell Planetarium today! This hyperboloid structure, designed by HOK Founding Partner Gyo Obata, opened on April 16, 1963, in Forest Park.
“The strength comes from the shape,” HOK architect Roger McFarland said in a St. Louis Post-Dispatch article. “Think of an egg; it’s tiny but strong. It’s a beautifully simple concept. But once you start looking at the construction photographs, you realize how difficult it is to build something so simple.”
In 1966, architecture students from Washington University in St. Louis unknowingly …
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 …
A continuation of the HOK Diversity Quilt posts … today we are featuring “all about me” squares. We’ve found that each square represents the maker in a unique way, and the next two were uniquely made:
Donovan Oliff (Assistant General Council) – “Donovan”
1. Did you have any inspiration in making your square (and what process did you use to make it)?
I wish I could point to something interesting as a source of inspiration. To tell you the truth, I was a little intimated by all the stunningly creative people working in our office. My knowledge of artistic media is limited to what I was taught to use in grade
As part of the HOK Diversity Quilt posts, I’ll be highlighting some squares. I want to share the ideas and talent that have come from this project; I also want to give others inspiration; I mostly want to show you that making a square is easy and fun! Today I’m sharing three squares…each a simple idea basically using blank fabric squares and some fabric markers. Simple says a lot!
Matt Lindsey (ARC Print Shop) – “Tic Tac Toe”
1. Did you have any inspiration in making your square?
I loved playing Tic Tac Toe as a kid and I wanted to put my inner child in to the quilt.
Senior specifications writer Terry Mattison is celebrating 50 years at HOK – and counting.
Members of the St. Louis office gathered on August 30 to celebrate with Terry, whose 11-page resume includes a staggering 341 HOK projects. That number likely would double if it included the projects he has unofficially touched by providing advice on building materials. Terry, who still arrives at the office by 3:00 a.m. on most days, joins an elite group. HOK’s other two half-century employees are Co-Founder Gyo Obata and Chairman Emeritus Bill Valentine, who retired last spring.
“A lot of things have happened while Terry has been creating great work at HOK,” …
Lightwork. I can’t think of a better single word to describe what we do every day at HOK Lighting Group, the five-person lighting design team based in St. Louis. 2012 has been a very busy year for us. It is more than half over, so I wanted to share some of the highlights (pun is unavoidable in our profession). I also welcome you to follow me on Twitter (@LightworkPDZ) for continual lighting related announcements, observations and chatter.
The St. Louis Interiors and Lighting Groups have expanded and revitalized our workshop to include multiple lighting mock-ups including the HOK Product Design/Neoray recessed indirect …
Diversity is an important role in each person’s life. We understand diversity from things as simple as trying a new food, designing buildings in new ways, and knowing people who differ from ourselves. Simply put, without diversity, life would not be like a box of chocolates (and really, who wants that).
HOK is certianly the type of firm the appreciates the dedication that people make to HOK, which is in fact what makes HOK the great organiztion that it is. It is important to recognize the diversity of each of these individuals that make up the greater part of HOK. To celebrate and enhance our diversity, as well as to show appreciation for …
According to the AIA, the Fellowship program “honors architects who have made a significant contribution to architecture and society and who have achieved a standard of excellence in the profession.” Bob becomes one of only about 3,000 members of the 80,000 AIA members to receive this honor.
Since joining HOK in1979, Bob has dedicated his career to transforming the design of U.S. courthouses, pretrial detention centers, correctional and local law enforcement facilities. His design leadership has helped make …
The future of composting food and other biodegradable “waste” in large multi-tenant office buildings is unfolding in a pilot program orchestrated by HOK in its St. Louis headquarters at the One Metropolitan Square (Met Square) downtown.
HOK’s Terri Muckensturm and Mary Ostafi separate and discard food leftovers
A team in HOK’s St. Louis office is managing an $18,000 grant engaging eight Met Square tenants in the pilot program that began on October 26, 2011. Through December 12, 2011, the tenants have recycled 11.33 tons of food waste for composting, averaging more than 1.5 tons of food each week. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Americans discard more than 96 billion pounds of …
Calling creative minds itching to get their ideas for solving the big hairy challenges of the cities of St. Louis and Portland out to the world! GOOD Design and CEOs for Cities have teamed up with a grant from ArtPlace to expand their GOOD Ideas for Cities, which taps creative problem solvers to tackle real urban challenges and present solutions at live events across the country.
You can follow it all on Twitter or visit link here, but for right now, the big thing to do if you live in one of these two cities is to throw your hat into the ring to see if you can be one of the …
What’s a truly authentic experience? For me, is was running through Forest Park in St Louis last week between our board meetings. Wow! When did they put that there? I’ve run in some pretty nice urban parks around the world (thanks, HOK) but Forest Park is extraordinary. It’s where I go in my head when I go running. Now I’ve been there.
Over the weekend, prominent buildings across North America and the world — including the Empire State Building in New York City and the CN Tower in Toronto, Canada — turned their lights blue to raise awareness for autism and commemorated World Autism Awareness Day on Saturday, April 2.
Over the past few weeks, HOK Lighting Group in St. Louis has been assisting Autism Speaks’ awareness campaign by involving St. Louis on a grand scale for the first time. The Light-It-Up-Blue campaign has been running strong across the nation (and world) for a few years, but 2011 saw a 400%+ jump in the total number of projects …
In this blog series you have heard from the women designers; from architects to interiors to graphics and landscapes. Today I bring you another side of HOK, one not often gracing the pages of Architectural Record, well, let’s face it not ever. But a side I would argue equally important. Meet Stacy Sensel and Anne Rogles, a dynamic duo who take on the world of numbers, invoices, Deltek and Concur. They fight the fight every day and still come back early, and I mean early, the next morning to do it all over again. They are our Business Manager and Accounting Specialist – the $$ side of the …
HOK and other architectural firms are working to reduce the carbon emissions of the buildings we design. Yet to reverse climate change, we need to look beyond the impact of individual buildings and create regional plans for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
These days you’d be hard-pressed to find a municipality that isn’t battling budget problems. How can a city afford to conduct a thorough greenhouse gas inventory — a careful accounting of greenhouse gases emitted to or removed from the atmosphere over a period of time — when it may be struggling to come up with the money it needs to fix potholes, pay its police offers and educate …
Our leadership team recently served up a delicious holiday lunch during the first-ever HOK St. Louis Leadership Potluck. The leaders - including Vice Chairman Clark Davis, CFO Bob Pratzel and friends – donned aprons and gloves (and, in some cases, Santa hats and other holiday accessories) to serve turkey and stuffing to STL’s HOKers. Dozens of employees joined forces to create… well… the largest potluck I’ve seen in my life.
Earlier this month, some particularly creative members of the office put their skills to use for the St. Louis Children’s Hospital. For the third year in a row, an HOK crew (on …
A pilot project is generally a project designed as a test or trial to demonstrate the effectiveness of a full program or product. It was time we started doing this with FRENO. It has been in development for 2 years, and we’ve built prototypes, models, animations, etc.– it was time to get our hands dirty! Partnering with the Downtown Community Improvement District, HOK helped to choose an appropriate site in downtown St. Louis, and began the plans for installation. The first of many to come, we learned some valuable lessons installing FRENO for the first time. Read on for our findings:
Location, Location, Location! Situated away from historic buildings (and their challenging below-grade vaults), the location for this raingarden