Mobile Loaves & Fishes Community! First Village Community First! Village is a 51-acre master planned community that provides affordable, permanent housing and a supportive community for the disabled, chronically homeless in Central Texas. Since 2005, this transformative residential program has been a staple of Mobile Loaves & Fishes and has become the largest community-based model in the country lifting homeless men and women up off the streets into community and home.
The Project Scoop: Studio8 is working on Phases 3 & 4 of their Downtown Masterplan which includes the design and construction of five new community buildings including a new Corporate HQ building, Neighbor Services Building, Welcome Center, Assembly Hall & Community Works Building.
Creative Action Creative Action is the largest provider of arts education in Central Texas, reaching more than 20,000 youth and families each year. Since 1997, Creative Action has delivered high-quality, far-reaching arts enrichment and educational programs to 250,000+ youth, families, and visitors in Central Texas, delivered more than 250,000+ hours of arts enrichment programs, held more than 1,000 public performances and events, and employed 800+ local artists. Every year, we provide unique experiences for thousands of Austin youth, families, and visitors to engage in meaningful creative arts programs and events with professional artists and educators.
The Project Scoop: Studio8 is working on Creative Action’s new Community Center for Arts Education at the Mueller Development which includes a 2-story 23,000 s.f. center with ample education spaces, visual arts studios, black-box theatre, multipurpose spaces and more.
This prestigious honor is awarded to individuals who have made significant contributions to architecture and society on a national level, and only about three percent of AIA’s more than 94,000 members hold this distinction. Hime was granted fellowship in object two, as his work has proven “to advance the science and art of planning and building by advancing the standards of practice.”
From Studio8’s inception, Milton Hime set the firm on a course focused on community engagement and service. Milton began to participate with many non-profit organizations in a more rigorous commitment of his resources after witnessing the financial and time commitments many of his clients were making. This inspired him to contribute to basic needs organizations, child development, faith communities, and public spaces that needed support including the Central Texas Food Bank, People’s Community Clinic, Manos de Cristo and many more. Milton’s community-oriented ethos has informed the firm’s culture and has inspired Studio8 staff members to be more involved with local community events, including the Austin Barkitecture competition and the American Heart Association’s Heart & Stroke Walk, where Studio8 employees helped raise over $200,000. Studio8 Architects believes that community volunteering is an important measure of the civic health of our community and provides up to eight hours of paid time off annually for each employee to participate in volunteer activities.
Studio8 Architects is dedicated to the welfare of the architectural, interior design and sustainable design community and encourage staff participation and engagement by funding their annual membership dues for AIA, IIDA, and USGBC. In addition, Studio8 offers an annual stipend for each employee to use towards a continuing education program of their choice which includes licensing exams and attending various seminars, conferences, and study courses. Several of our employees and principals have been involved in various facets of the AIA Austin Chapter. Milton Hime serves as a Member at Large for the AIA Board of Directors and is on the AIA Austin Facilities Task Force. Paul Detke, Principal, served as a chair for the AIA Urban Design Government Affair committee where he helped make amendments to Sub-Chapter E. We have had former staff involved in the AIA Leadership Collective program and our sustainability specialists actively attend COTE chapter meetings and were part of the original team to help re-instate the local chapter.
We are also a recent signatory of the AIA 2030 Commitment program and believe it’s our responsibility to take measurable steps towards a greener and more regenerative built environment. Principal and Director of Sustainable Design, Megan Slattery was recently invited to serve as an advisory board member for the City of Austin Climate Plan Building Committee, a coalition of Austin-area institutions working on climate awareness and action providing comments on the recommendations in the 2020 revisions of the Austin Community Climate Plan. The firm is committed to meeting the WELL Building Standard on projects where possible. Three members of the firm are WELL Accredited Professionals, and 13 members are LEED Accredited Professionals and LEED Green Associated.
Studio8 is devoted to raising awareness of our profession and have participated in several education-oriented activities including the AIA Architecture in Schools program where we led classes at Pease Elementary School for two years to teach students about architecture in the built environment and helped students explore and design their own elementary schools. Additionally, Studio8 participated in the Andy Roddick Foundation Summer Learning Box City program and Austin’s CREW Careers event held at the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders where we taught 9th grade girls about the different career opportunities in the development, design, and construction industry.
We also recognize the disparity of underrepresented groups in our practice and Studio8 employees have created a volunteer-based, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion group dedicated to understanding, supporting, and encouraging the representation of minorities and underrepresented populations as it relates to our practice and community. Vital to this effort, is their primary focus of educational outreach to school-age children with the intent to expose the younger members of our community to the potential of design to do good. They strive to create a culture of tolerance, understanding and curiosity within their culture as well as foster engagement with local communities through volunteering with other like-minded groups proliferating the ideals of social justice. In addition, Studio8 recently became a Platinum level sponsor for the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA) Central Texas Chapter. Several of Studio8’s employees recently participated in the 2021 NOMA – Houston Diversity Career Fair, where they mock-interviewed and provided feedback to architecture and interior design students and graduate’s portfolios and resumes from University of Houston, Rice University, Prairie View A&M University and Texas A&M University.
Further supporting this, Studio8 is also the first Texas company to receive the JUST label from the International Living Future Institute and has been a JUST-certified organization since 2016. The JUST program optimizes policies that improve social equity and enhance employee engagement, grading companies on a wide range of practices such as diversity, local benefit to community investments, human resources and compensation policies. Studio8 received the JUST 2.0 label in September 2020, earning perfect scores in pay-scale equity, health care provision, inclusion, engagement, and both gender and ethnic diversity.
This award was established in memory of James D. Pfluger, FAIA, whose community service extended over a lifetime of commitment, resulting in significant community enhancements. Pfluger’s contributions to Austin and the state of Texas through volunteer and professional efforts were broad and included leadership roles in the development of Town Lake in Austin, regional planning for a national church body, education of non-architects, and public relations as editor of Texas Architect.
Founding principal of Studio8, Milton E. Hime, AIA, has assisted more than 25 nonprofits in 25 years. His early community work was volunteer-oriented — Housing Resources Association, Hands on Housing, Habitat for Humanity — but for almost three decades now, he has demonstrated a more rigorous commitment through mostly pro-bono design and placemaking work for basic needs, child development, faith, and public organizations. He’s worked on projects for nonprofits like Caritas of Austin, the Central Texas Food Bank, and People’s Community Clinic (PCC), often serving on their governance boards and capital campaign committees. Hime worked with PCC for 18 years, helping them select a new site, design their facility, develop the budget, generate fundraising, and finally as a board member.
Last week, the Army Future’s Command celebrated the grand opening of their new flagship at ACC Rio Grande’s central campus in Austin, Texas. AFC sits directly in the center of the historic building, occupying levels 2 and 3. Originally designated to be the library, the design team worked hand-in-hand with ACC’s Project Manager and Army Future’s Command to quickly reprogram and conceptualize AFC’s new digs.
Walls needed to be relocated for the addition of private offices and conference rooms, new furniture specifications were implemented and security access had to be integrated into the corridors and stairwells as the 2nd floor is shared with ACC and needed to be separated completely.
Studio8 is continuing to work with the Army Futures in expanding their facilities within the campus.
Situated at the most popular access point to the Ann & Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike Trail, the Johnson Creek Restroom serves up to a third of the trail’s daily users. The playful structure provides runners with a safe, open-air facility as well as a symbolic point of demarcation between the paved parking lot and the natural landscape of the trail. The restroom’s location also marks the beginning of the Johnson Creek Greenbelt, a mile-long urban park that weaves between the concrete piers of the highway above and the natural landscape along the dry creek below.
The two primary elements of the restroom—the concrete walls and rebar screens—are examples of biomimetic architecture, in which physical elements are designed to recall natural forms. The walls that frame the stalls and sink are made from board-formed concrete, in which the pattern of the wooden formwork used to shape the poured-in-place concrete is left exposed. Here, the architects made a pattern of closely spaced boards alternately set back to create deep shadow lines. The overall effect recalls the organic layering of the exposed limestone along the nearby creek bed. Likewise, the metal screens are made from ordinary steel reinforcing bars popularly known as rebar (usually hidden inside of concrete) painted green to recall the prairie grasses and reeds that flourish along the shores of Lady Bird Lake.
In the same way that the restroom’s primary materials were selected for their durability, the open feel of the restroom is intended to create a sense of safety for the thousands of people who use this trailhead daily (a survey by The Trail Foundation indicated that most of the trail’s users go it alone and prioritize safety, seating, and shade). The openness of the rebar screens deters loitering and increases visibility between the trail, parking lot, and restrooms. The stalls are illuminated by sunlight during the day, and by thin LED fixtures embedded in the steel battens that span between the sloping rafters at night.
Ethan describes his work as doing a ‘little bit of everything’ on a variety of projects. For the last thirty years, Ethan has been drawing and dreaming up solutions with his team, putting the puzzle pieces of a project together. This is what Ethan enjoys most about being an architect. His breadth of knowledge paired with his humbleness and inclusivity is what the team enjoys most about working with Ethan.
A Houston native, but an Austinite at heart, Ethan moved to Austin after graduating from Texas A&M University. Drawn to Austin’s sustainability initiatives, Ethan has lived here for the last 25 years. Being a part of this community is the heart of his daily life, and he brings the unique experience of living in Austin – it’s connections to nature and its’ creative spirit – to his work at Studio8.
Licensed Interior Designer, Lee Ann McClanahan describes herself as ‘obsessively organized’, both at home and at the office. This skill is very useful in her 20 years of practice and as Studio8’s Director of Furniture. Lee Ann guides the client and the design team on selecting the best furniture solutions, finishes and material combinations for a range of projects, from universities to corporations, to tech companies and community-centered organizations. Lee Ann’ favorite days at Studio8 are installation days, when she gets to meet the delivery trucks and see her work literally come to life as people bring their own energy to the spaces she has designed.
Lee Ann is a rare breed – a third generation Austinite – with deep roots in the city. Drawn to Austin’s outdoor spaces and parks, Lee Ann often finds herself heading outside for a walk at some point most every day to be her best self.
Megan Moshier is a Registered Interior Designer and the Director of Studio8’s San Antonio office. Since 2006, Megan has been an integral part of the Studio8 family and culture and when the time came to lay roots for a second office in San Antonio in 2011, Megan was the most qualified candidate for the challenge. Megan has worked vigorously to build a presence in San Antonio and cultivate a culture for employees to learn and grow and share a joke in between.
As one of Studio8’s most senior designers, she brings a great level of skill to her practice and has made significant strides to the design industry. The most gratifying part of the practice is providing her clients with innovative design solutions that encourage company growth, inspire employees and are reflective of the company’s mission and values.
A ‘cheerleader’ for San Antonio’s future development, she is active in several organizations, most notably in ULI, where she was chair of the mentor program for five years. She is now focused on ULI NEXT, which promotes and supports the next generation of leaders in the design, construction and development industries to help make SA the best city it can be.
When she is not designing construction details or walking a job site, Megan can often be found hanging out with her kids at the Alamo Heights baseball fields or working on her next home renovation project with the family.
Deanna is the Marketing Director and a Principal at Studio8. As one of the firm’s most outward-facing members, Deanna stewards Studio8’s brand and shepherds projects from first contact through completion to final photography. Deanna’s genuine approach to business initiatives and development has led to long lasting friendships with clients and the community, which she actively continues to foster.
Having once taken a break from her career to work on an Alaskan fishing boat, she is undaunted in the face of any challenge and enjoys tackling opportunities to contribute to Studio8’s growth and recognition. Often the first to break the ice and the last to leave a networking event, she is an active member of ULI Austin and a past president of SMPS, where she served as a mentor. Deanna is an advocate for educating our younger generations about the architectural and interior design profession and spearheads the firm’s participation in youth initiatives including the City of Austin’s Get Ready! Summer Internship Program and AIA Austin’s Architecture in Schools.
An Austin native, Deanna enjoys spending time with her family of five at her old stomping grounds including Scholz Beer Garden, the High Road on Dawson and at Butler Park with their pooch, June.
Megan Slattery is a Principal and the Director of Sustainable Design for Studio8. Megan brings over 20 years of experience to the firm, including owning and managing her practice Office for Local Architecture (OLA) which merged with Studio8 in January of 2019. OLA was created as a dual practice, sustainability consulting and architecture. Megan saw an opportunity in a developer driven market where projects were beginning to see the marketability of LEED rated buildings.
Megan approaches her work as a problem solver. One of her favorite parts of her job is embracing each project’s unique complexities and working with her team to maneuver through their challenges and create solutions. Having worked closely with AEGB for many years, she was recently invited by the City of Austin to serve as an advisory board member for their Climate Action Plan Building Committee to help our city curb community-wide emissions and increase equity.
An Austinite since 2005, Megan can often be found at one of Austin’s Hike and Bike trails with her pup, Petey or hanging out on a patio with a Topo Chico in hand at one of her favorite east Austin neighborhood restaurants.
Candidates should be self-starters, problem solvers and exhibit grace under pressure. This position requires proficiency in Excel and Word, experience answering a multi-line phone system, excellent organizational skills, and technological savvy.
Job responsibilities include the following:
Administrative support of staff and clients
Managing building maintenance and repair for multiple locations
Building security management
Greeting clients and visitors
Event planning and coordination
Procurement and distribution of office supplies
Assistance with staff onboarding
There is a physical component to this position as Studio8 is located in three buildings across a three-block area and all facilities will be managed by this position. We are looking for someone with a can-do, hospitality mind set who is always eager to help.
Our collaborative studio environment is ideal for driven, self-starters looking to expand their knowledge on all disciplines of design. Studio8 offers comprehensive benefits, a quality work environment and competitive salary commensurate with experience.
Studio8 is an Equal Opportunity Employer and the first company in the State of Texas to receive a JUST label from the International Living Future Institute, a program dedicated to helping organizations develop better employee engagement policies and community stewardship practices.
Texas Mutual Insurance Company, in close collaboration with its design team, prioritizes wellness design aspects to create a healthy and active workplace. The headquarters building is located within the Mueller development community under LEED for Neighborhood Development—a pedestrian-friendly environment with walkable destinations, open green spaces and connections to public transit—concepts that are replicated throughout the project’s design.
One of the primary goals of the project was to align itself with the “Design for Active Occupants” LEED innovation strategy, to promote physical activity in what would normally be a sedentary office environment. With LEED Gold and Austin Energy Green Building 4-Star certifications, the project took action to implement building design features that encourage an active lifestyle for current and future occupants. These wellness features include accessible central staircases, activity-promotion signage, an on-site fitness center, complimentary healthy and locally sourced food and drink choices, biophilic elements, ergonomic workstations, public transit incentives and access to natural daylight and work-friendly green spaces.
To monitor the activity and health progress of occupants, Texas Mutual provides wearable devices to track activity, plus access for employees to an online portal that evaluates individual health scores and biometric data. The company also provides a generous financial incentive to all employees who participate in an annual health risk assessment and biometric screening. The data collected from internal programs, combined with data from medical claims, provide key insights into the overall health of the organization.
American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) Headquarters, Austin, Texas
First on the list was the grand opening of the American Association of Nurse Practitioner’s (AANP) new three-story, 33,900 s.f. national headquarters in Southwest Austin. AANPs program required a majority of closed offices so it was important to create multiple touchpoints for collaboration and social interaction. Key features include a state of the art All Hands Room, a Board Room with an expansive built-in banquette, an exit stair that was opened up to become a communicating stair with adjacency to a coffee bar, collaboration zones and the third floor break room with a combined outdoor terrace that offers great views of the Austin landscape. Their new facility is designed to better support the mission of AANP, accommodating new member benefits, new resources for practice and development and educational opportunities. See more pictures here.
Workforce Solutions Capital Area, Austin, Texas
Next up was the grand opening of Workforce Solutions Capital Area’s new North Career Center in Northeast Austin. Studio8 began the programming process in 2018, working closely with WFS and their employees to learn more about their culture, goals, and how they worked to ensure their next facility met their needs and could better support their mission. Relocating into a 71,000 s.f. facility, the new location is nearly twice the size of the previous one and offers three times as many meeting rooms to allow clients to have private conversations with staff. Learn more about WFS here.
Horizon Bank, Holland Texas
Last but certainly not least, we celebrated the historical renovation of Horizon Bank in Downtown Holland, Texas. This charming 2,700 s.f. building dates all the way back to 1905 and boy are we swooning over the architectural details. The design and construction team worked closely with the client to ensure the historical integrity of the bank remained intact, including mimicking the traditional black and white penny tile flooring, restoring the marble countertops and our favorite, exposing the incredible metal craftsmanship of the historic vaults and Teller bars that were originally buried in paint. In addition to renovating the interiors and providing furniture services, Studio8 also provided architectural modifications including restoring the original glass windows and designing the drive through canopy addition. Stay tuned for final photos of the project.
High winds whistling through trees at the future site of YMCA’s Camp Moody near Buda was practically music to the ears of Dell Children’s Hospital employee Krista Gregory.
Amid excitement surrounding Saturday’s official groundbreaking for the 85-acre day and overnight camp located along Onion Creek, Gregory, founder of the Center for Children Resiliency, urged revelers to pause and envision what the sounds and smells of spring could mean for generations of children to come.
Offering an all-inclusive experience that allows children to escape the digital world and immerse themselves in nature is the goal for Gregory and many others.
Turning of the dirt Saturday marked a special day for many, including YMCA of Austin CEO James Finck. Camp Moody, formerly known as Camp Cypress, is expected to be a multi-use site for camps, group events and retreats
“This day will carry us into a day of hope for future happiness,” Gregory said.
The first phase of the project will include construction of a dining hall, bunk cabin village that can hold up to 220 campers and a pair of 700-foot zip lines. Other amenities include a climbing wall, archery range, ropes course and accessible trails. The site also calls for a 15,000-foot enclosed natatorium, or aquatics center, that will be partially funded by Hays CISD.
Roughly $16 million has so far been fundraised by the YMCA to make the camp a reality. That includes a receiving a $6.25 million gift from The Moody Foundation in 2018. YMCA officials said they will continue efforts to fundraise the $18 million needed for the first phase of the camp.
“Camp Moody is about bringing kids and families into nature to learn, grow and thrive,” Finck said in a statement. Finck said camps help teach children soft skills, such as teamwork and communication, as well as improving personal development traits.
Saturday’s groundbreaking also capped off a nearly 20-year quest by the Y to create Camp Moody, which was originally the brainchild of philanthropists George and Peggy Yonge. In 1999, the Yonge family donated 100-acres of land near Onion Creek to the YMCA of Austin for the purpose of creating an all-inclusive camp for kids.
Wes Yonge, member of the Yonge Family Foundation and George and Peggy’s son, said George was “moved to tears of joy” when he had the chance to tour the site prior to his death. Wes said he realized the camp’s potential impact when his own son said the site was “way better than my iPad.”
Hays CISD trustee Vanessa Petrea said the partnership between the Y and Hays CISD is a “win-win” for both organizations. In 2017, HCISD trustees approved a $5 million pledge toward the natatorium, which will be owned and operated by the Y.
Petrea cited the ability for the district to further expand its high school swim program, while also giving elementary students important life-saving swim lessons in the future. Petrea said an added benefit is the facility possibly employing Hays CISD students as lifeguards and camp counselors.
Many lauded the camp’s promise to cater to all children of any ability, while also being affordable and cost-effective for their parents.
Jackie Cox, a parent of a child with autism, said Camp Moody fills the void of a camp experience that meets the safety needs necessary for children with disabilities.
Measures included a sensory room and low-sound toilets.
“These are simple tweaks that can make it difficult on the front end of a project like this,” Cox said. “I’m very excited and hopeful my children can attend this camp.”
Paul Hoffman, Camp Moody fundraising campaign co-chair, lauded what Camp Moody could offer. Hoffman said camp is an experience that can change the lives of children.
“There is no place like camp that can create character in kids,” Hoffman said.
The Riata Vista project team were honored to receive two awards at the recent Design Build Institute of America Awards that took place in New Orleans this past week.
The DBIA’s National Project awards are given annually to projects that exemplify the principles of design-build done right. Studio8 and Cadence McShane Construction went above and beyond achieving cost, schedule and quality goals, demonstrating unique applications of design-build best practices to raise the bar within the industry. The corporate campus consists of high-tech office space, three parking garages with over 5,000 spaces, and a central power plant that is LEED-Gold certified offering 100% renewable energy use, 20% water use reduction, water – efficient landscaping, and 95% construction waste diversion.
The Moody Foundation, an organization dedicated to ‘building a bigger and better future for Texas’, recently granted the YMCA of Austin $6.25M. This generous grant will support the YMCA’s efforts in developing the 85-acre land, formally known as Camp Cypress, into an affordable and accessible overnight and day camp for the underserved individuals of Central Texas. The camp nestled off Old San Antonio Road in North Buda is home to several native species and features dramatic limestone outcrops and Bald Cypress trees lining the Onion Creek banks.
Collaborating with Overland Partners and JE Dunn Construction, the updates to this camp will include treehouse cabins, two bunk cabin villages, a dining hall, a 12,000-sqaure-foot enclosed competition aquatic center, 700-foot dual zip lines, climbing wall, archery range, ropes course, entertainment amphitheater, open-air sports space and accessible trails. Most importantly, all these amenities and activities will utilize universal design to be accessible and welcoming to people of all abilities.
“My favorite part about working on this project is the level of collaboration between the YMCA and the design team” says Studio8 Architect, Amy Westermeyer. “It is very clear that the YMCA is passionate about their mission and want a clear balance of function and thoughtful engagement with the natural environment”. Building upon this mission, the design aims to visually connect the built and natural environments so that camp users may find respite from the challenges of the day-to-day life. Camp Moody will be a destination where all persons can find common ground in the joys of nature, play, and healthy living so that we may nurture our spirit, mind, and body.
Austin Community College’s board members, faculty and students congregated at the Rio Grande Building in celebration of the Campus’s new beginnings. Congressmen Lloyd Doggett and Mayor Pro Tem, Kathie Tovo attended, highlighting ACC’s contributionsto the educational community and the opportunities this renovation will bring. Doggett even made a reference to his time spent at Austin High in the late sixties, when it was still operating out of the Rio Grande building.
Collaborating with Overland Partners, Huston Gallagher, Inc. & Architexas, we preserve historical integrity ensuring all historical components are properly restored. Inside, the main building will be completely gutted, adding in new classrooms, atrium-like study areas, science labs and even a multi-level learning lab that will be larger than their current ACCelerator lab at the ACC Highland campus.
Although no ground was actually broken at the ceremony, we rang bells to symbolize the start of a new school day, or in this case, the start of new and exciting changes to come for ACC’s Rio Grande Campus.
Central Texas Food Bank’s new facility was rated on building regulations, the integrated design, energy efficiency and performance, water use reduction, indoor environmental quality, materials and resources used, education and equity and innovation.
Top Sustainability Features and Benefits:
40.1% energy savings
Community garden for food production and education
75% of construction waste (131 tons) diverted from landfill
Irrigation water use reduced by 84% and indoor water use reduced by 22.3%
39% of building materials comprised of recycled content, 35% of building materials are Texas-sourced materials
With the new, 135,000 s.f. facility more than doubling in size, overhead costs were likely to rise. Implementing green features has saved money in the long run including 29 percent savings of utility costs per square foot versus their older facility and 40 percent in energy savings which earned the Food Bank $24,000 in rebates, equating to 96,000 more meals for the community. In the end, these savings ensure Central Texas Food Bank’s resources are going to where it really matters; families in Central Texas.
Practicing sustainable design not only improves the quality of our environment but also offers several economic and social benefits too, including improving your employee’s productivity, comfort and health and overall morale.
Mueller was a perfect fit for Texas Mutual’s new headquarters, offering a variety of amenities including 40-plus diverse eateries, several retailers, active parks and multiple home options for those eager to lessen their commute – many of which are in walking distance.
The 4-story, 270,000 square-foot office building will aid in consolidating 600 Texas Mutual employees into one location and accommodate for future growth. As Texas Mutual continues to grow, the demographic of their employees is also changing; evolving into a multi-generational work culture. The new design focuses on the ‘live, work, play’ model, responding to Texas Mutual’s mission in hiring new talent, but most importantly retaining it. The building will also feature 20,000 s.f. of ground floor retail, a daycare facility for Texas Mutual employees and a rooftop terrace courtyard with views overlooking downtown Austin.
The project is set to complete in late November of 2018.
See project renderings and entire design team here.
Here are some little tidbits we thought you might find interesting about our newest colleagues. Enjoy!
Efrain Vergara is an Architectural Designer at our San Antonio office. He received his Bachelors in Architecture from UTSA and his Masters from the University of Oregon a few years back. Efrain is interested in adaptive reuse projects and has extensive experience in hospitality design. When Efrain isn’t at work, he is either traveling to his hometown of Chicago or cycling in Southtown at the Blue Star trail head. Efrain has even participated in a Century Ride where he biked for 100 miles in less than 12 hours.
Jingqi Li is an Architectural Designer at our Austin office. She majored in Industrial Design during her undergraduate studies in China and recently received her Master’s in Architecture from UTSA. Jingqi’s favorite part of the architectural process is programming because she feels this is where the concept is born. She is currently reading ‘The Story of Art’ in hopes to find a way to overlap industrial design, architecture and art. Off work, Jingqi is either eating at Sichuan River, her favorite Chinese restaurant or sweating out the toxins at Modo Yoga in Austin.
Ronnie Marquez is a Designer at our Austin office. Ronnie studied Interior Design at UT and will be graduating this summer. His favorite part of the design process is spatial problem solving because he finds it to be one big puzzle he gets to put together. Ronnie is also invested in caring for the environment and is interested in applying more sustainable approaches to design. Ronnie was even a Vegan for a year but broke it with a #2 combo from Chick-fil-A. Outside of work, Ronnie volunteers with his church in helping the community and has been on two mission trips; one to Indonesia and one to India.
Kelly McEachern, is a Senior Interior Designer at our Austin office. After graduating from UTSA, Kelly began her career in Houston where she developed a niche focused on Workplace Strategy and Change Management. After a few years in the field, Kelly also discovered that in addition to designing, she really enjoyed managing and mentoring her colleagues, helping them reach their full potential. Outside of work, Kelly loves to hike or camp with her son. Since 2010, she and her son have made a tradition of traveling to Rwanda, Africa withAfrica New Life Ministries to help support the children and local villages of Rwanda.
Xuhua Cheng is an Architectural Designer at our Austin office. She moved from China to the States six years ago and recently received her Master’s in Architecture from UTSA. When she was living in China, Xuhua received her licensure as an architect and urban planner. She is fascinated by Fractal theory and enjoys discovering how self-similar patterns are organized across different scales. Xuhua also really enjoys hand crafted model making, using any materials she can get her hands on. When Xuhua isn’t at work, she is most likely hanging out with her son at the Brushy Creek Greenbelt or practicing charcoal drawing.
Madison Towns is the new Design Intern for our San Antonio office. She is currently in her second year of architecture school at UTSA and plans on walking the stage in May of 2018. In addition to studying architecture, she is also working on obtaining a minor in business. Outside of work, Madison loves to travel, paint and even started her own photography business last summer. Find her at Guadalupe Park when the weather is nice with her Cannon 6D.
We are honored to have accepted two Excellence Design Awards from this years’ IIDA Texas/Oklahoma Inspire 16 Gala. Both of the winning projects were completed this year by Architects and Designers, Milton Hime, Jennifer Carter, Megan Moshier, Chelsea Livingston and Lee Ann McClanahan.
Designers were asked what made this project important, impactful and unique. Below are their responses:
Designing a new facility for our longtime client and friends at People’s Community Clinic was an exercise of imagining something better for themselves and for their patients, moving past a ‘make do’ attitude caused by their cramped, existing footprint. It’s new location in East Austin eased accessibility to more patients due to its closer proximity to the medically underserved. Most importantly, the new design needed to be approachable and familiar, helping foster personal connections between the care team and patients, making it a more dignified experience.
What made Prairie View A&M an important project is that the building acts as a catalyst for fostering more universal thought by merging two colleges with separate identities. In addition, the new design propels the college into the future through the modern use of traditional materials and the fresh approach to student learning and interaction. It’s impactful because of the buildings central location on the campus, touching the lives of more students. Lastly, it is unique because the building was designed holistically, blending the interior and exterior experience.
This year, Studio8 took on the American Heart Association’s Executive Challenge, raising over $15,000 in lifesaving dollars for the 2016 Austin Heart Walk. The American Heart Association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke, providing innovative research, stronger health policies and the tools needed to save and improve lives. Learn more about their mission here.
Ochos enjoyed coming up with creative ways to fundraise including the Studio8 poker nightand having product reps donate money in lieu of providing lunch at all the Lunch and Learns.
Congratulations to our Top Walkers, Jonathan Pearson and Milton Hime, personally raising over a $1,000 each.
Located in Austin, Texas, the Riata Vista project is a master-planned, mixed-use corporate campus for a global high-tech corporation. The multi-phase, LEED-Gold assignment was completed on a design-build basis by Cadence McShane Construction Companyand Studio8 Architects (Team).
The 38.18-acre campus includes six four-story corporate office buildings totaling 978,265 square feet, a fully-equipped café and conference center at 156,862 square feet, a 10,260 square foot central utility plant and three multi-story structured parking garages totaling 1,636,558 square feet that accommodate 4,959 vehicles.
The Owner’s overall vision for the project focused on creating employee-centric spaces within an environmentally-forward setting. To meet these goals and provide cost-effective solutions, the Team worked closely with the client through regular communication, 3D animation/BIM Modeling and mock-ups to ensure that all specialized interior and exterior areas met their requirements.
Each office building incorporates carefully-configured spaces to serve employees in a variety of functions. For example, Building 4 includes a Wellness Center complete with general doctor exam rooms, physical therapy rooms, a vision exam room with glasses dispensary, dental center and pharmacy, among others. There is also a state-of-the-art Fitness Center featuring aerobic and weight training equipment and two studios for group classes with integrated on-demand digital training capabilities utilizing a touchscreen interface and drop-down screens.
Another popular employee amenity area is found in the two-story café within Building 5. Considered the “central jewel” for the entire campus, the café serves a multitude of cuisines and acts as a common gathering area with generous indoor and outdoor seating. Building 5 also houses a learning lab where employees can become educated about and test new products.
In addition to interior specialized spaces, the campus offers an abundance of outdoor areas for employees such as flagstone walkways surrounded by Zen fountains, meandering jogging trails with shade trees, vistas with pavilions and a grand center lawn.
Through years of partnership with Milton and the Studio8 team, the dream to expand People’s Community Clinic to a larger, more accessible space has been fulfilled. The 59,000 sq.ft. facility located at 1101 Camino La Costa offers more programs and services in support of their patient-centered care model, including a classroom for prenatal group visits and nutritious cooking classes in their modern Teaching Kitchen.
Every Studio8 decision was geared towards assisting the community; ensuring accessible travel options, exam room size, comfortable and welcoming waiting rooms, and easy to navigate signage throughout the facility. The size and amenities of the new clinic has increased patient accessibility and doubled the number of patients PCC can serve from 10,000 to 20,000 annually.
It brings us great pride to announce we are the first firm in Texas to receive the International Living Future Institute’s™ JUST™ label, leading our industry and community into a new era of corporate transparency.
The JUST™ program provides organizations with a ‘nutrition label’, if you will, revealing their practices and values on employee well-being and benefits, equity & diversity, operations and community investments.
Companies are measured in the following six categories and can earn as high as a three-star level rating:
These six broad categories include a variety of sub categories ranging from Worker Happiness to Responsible Investing . Here are a few highlights from our label.
Worker Happiness: Score 3/3
We are committed to creating, maintaining, and supporting a positive work environment that is conducive to and fosters worker happiness and job satisfaction. We are concerned about our employees and their families and we strive to create an appropriate work-life balance and provide workplaces where our employees are happy.
Transparency: Score 3/3
We are committed to being ethically transparent in all aspects of our operation. We support a voluntary, full disclosure policy and provide ongoing open access and communication to internal and external audiences on important organizational information. This information includes our purpose, goals, governance structure, environmental impacts, ingredients used in manufacturing and our involvement in social, political and environmental causes.
Charitable Giving: Score 3/3
We have a policy to participate in charitable giving to worthy causes within the communities where we are located. Specifically, Studio8 commits to donating a minimum of 3% of its before-tax profits to registered charitable or not-for-profit organizations on an annual basis.
Gender Pay Equity: Score 2/3
Studio8 strives for gender pay scale equity, and our goal is to eliminate systemic bias and discrimination that relates to the under-valuation of work traditionally performed by women and to ensure that women are treated on the same basis with men in terms of compensation for the work they perform. All employees performing the same or similar work or work of equal value will be compensated on the same pay scale.
“In a relatively short time-frame since program launch, the JUST™ Program has garnered worldwide interest and is helping organizations to develop better employee engagement policies and community stewardship practices. The Institute is pleased to announce that Studio8 Architects has now joined the rank of JUST™ Labelled organizations with the distinction of being the first design firm in the State of Texas to earn the JUST™ Label said Francis Janes, JUST™ Program Manager of International Living Future Institute.
See what other organizations are joining the movement to creating a more equitable society, here.
Centro SA partnered with the Rivard Report, Overland Partners and the Pearl to launch a competition open to everyone in the San Antonio community to transform the street of Broadway and its environs.
Studio8 couldn’t miss out on the opportunity to participate in a design that could impact our community and build on the momentum for change. Designers Richard Garrod, Megan Moshier, Anna Delisle, Stephanie Briseño, Ryan Squyres and Miles Vandewalle rose to the challenge. The design team focused on reinventing the underpass at the US-281 and I-35 interchange. Recognizing the evolution along Broadway, the design established a strong urban core that would support the future needs and traditions of the San Antonio community.
From the 92 entries submitted, there were six design finalists and one People’s Choice prize which was voted on by the ceremony attendees.
See our entire design, here.
Read more about the competition and event, here.
Studio8 has partnered with LakeIFlato Architectsin designing a three-story, mixed use building with two floors of office space and restaurant and retail space on the ground floor. The building offers a beautiful view of Downtown Austin and overlooks 140 acres of open space dedicated to public parks, greenbelts, trails and plazas. The Diamond Building is located at the heart of Mueller’s Aldrich Street District, providing multiple amenities, including an Alamo Drafthouse, hotel, restaurants and entertainment.
Check out all the new shops coming to the Aldrich Street District, here.
This year, we were honored to take home the ‘Best Website’ award from the annual SMPS awards. Other awards included best Brochure, Holiday Piece, Newsletter, Special Event and Social Media. We couldn’t give an acceptance speech, but we are so thankful toFÖDA Studio for all their hard work and creativity designing our new identity; a brand truly reflective of our talent as a firm.
See more photos from the event on the SMPS- Austin website
The teams were given a prompt and only had a few hours to prepare a 10 minute presentation to be judged by a panel. Olga was a judge on the panel and Jennifer was an expert design professional, assisting the teams during their preparation for the presentation.
Olga’s thoughts on the day—
“I think it is important for girls to expand their knowledge of possible careers and to see women in those careers. Even though it just barely scratches the surface of what is involved in each career, simply knowing they have more options is encouraging and inspiring for girls. I wish I had something like this in school. The girls at Ann Richard School are an impressive group and present themselves with more maturity and confidence than the typical 9th grader.
To see more images from the event, visit our Facebook.
Olga’s take on the Austin Heart Walk—
The employees of Studio8 are active, healthy individuals. By supporting the Heart Walk, we are encouraging the idea that healthy employees make for happier teams, more creative ideas, and better projects. We believe the same is true for our friends, family, and colleagues. While the financial aspect of the Heart Walk is a huge part of our involvement, our role as a local sponsor and running the Pet Zone speaks to our desire to be out in the community and actively participate in it.
For the third year in a row, Studio8 participates in AIA’s Architecture in School Program. We look forward to this yearly opportunity to engage with our community and be inspired by the awesome creativity of the students.
Over the course of an eight year relationship, we master-planned several scenarios; each evolving with the needs of both the Archives and the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society (DFMS). That relationship has recently culminated with the Trinity Block Development Package. The package will help the DFMS find a suitable partner to develop the last privately owned empty downtown Austin block. The project is anchored by the archives building (67,000 sf) and includes office(210,000sf), retail (42,000 sf) and residential components (317,000 sf).
Generous Artproduces and curates shows to benefit nonprofits and charities. Our client Blackbaud, provides nonprofit organizations software and services for fundraising. Giving back to the community is important to us and we’re happy to have to opportunity to support this event.
On April 6th, Milton Hime was honored as People’s Community Clinic’s2015 W. Neal Kocurek Healthcare Advocacy Award recipient. This award is given annually to a community leader who demonstrates exceptional advocacy in the interest of equitable health care. See more photos on our Facebook.
The new headquarters was formerly home of the Texas Real Estate Commission and was purchased last fall. It will be gutted and renovated, with architecture services from Studio8 Architects and the Office of Local Architecture, with contracting work overseen by Zapalac/Reed Construction Company. See the article in the Austin Business Journal.