Member & Firm Updates
AE Works Gets the Funk out of February
Every February, AE Workers plan fun events and activities focused on staying active and engaged in their local communities. “Get the funk out of February” was started to overcome the winter blues and have something to look forward to during the cold months. Activities throughout the month feature salad club Thursdays, meditations, fun team trivia, lunchtime historical walk tour, TED talks, and a soup cook-off. During February, AE Works also held a book drive for Reading Ready Pittsburgh, a local Pittsburgh non-profit focused on increasing children’s access to books.
Promotions at Allen + Shariff
Allen + Shariff Corporation is pleased to announce the following promotions in the Pittsburgh Office:
Michael Bergen (Mechanical Department Head)
Shane Brant (Plumbing Department Head)
Robert Livorio (Electrical Department Head)
Jennifer Hanlon (Associate)
Mark Maydak (Associate)
Paul Messineo (Associate)
Vincent Cerro (Associate).
Meet GBBN’s New Associates & Associate Principals
GBBN recently recognized the leadership of five new Associate Principals whose passion and dedication advance GBBN’s work, support their colleagues, and drive positive change in their communities and the leadership of sixteen new Associates who not only do their jobs exceptionally well, but whose thoughtful action cultivates excellence in others.
The following Pittsburgh employees were recognized:
New Associate Principal:
Stephen Mrdjenovich, AIA: A Passive House champion within GBBN and with clients, Stephen leads teams to deliver projects that stand the test of time, in both operational efficiency and in how they support people’s sense of wellbeing. He is a sought-after mentor among early career architects and designers because they feel heard and respected when on his team and, with his support, they’re able to achieve their own goals on projects.
Mindy Coblentz, AIA is an experienced healthcare project manager and brought a broad background of project design and delivery expertise to GBBN when she joined us earlier this year. Mindy relishes the complexity of details in healthcare projects while maintaining sight of a project’s big picture goals.
Greg Coni, AIA bridges design and medical planning with project architecture to ensure project goals are met. He uses speaking and research opportunities to advance sustainability strategies and advocates for emerging professionals both internally and externally.
Shan Jiang joined GBBN earlier this year as our Director of Research and has conducted and published a substantial body of research on the relationship between people and their environment, therapeutic landscapes, healthcare design, and sustainable community development. Her most recent research article was published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.
Sarah Kusuma Rubritz is an emerging thought leader on the topic of academic libraries. Through her work on firmwide initiatives like digital technology and our Design Issues Series, she synthesizes current best practices for the benefit of the firm.
Mel Ngami, AIA motivates colleagues to do their best and push their use of creative design tools. She brings her passion, skills, and curiosity to the next generation of architects by speaking to middle and high-school students about design and co-leading Project Pipeline summer camps for the National Organization of Minority Architects, Pittsburgh.
New Hire & Promotions at LGA Partners
LGA Partners is thrilled to announce the following new hire and promotions:
Wesley Wise, RA, AIA, LEED AP, has joined the firm as an Associate. A registered architect, he brings over 25 years of experience to our flourishing Healthcare Design Studio. Wes is a tremendously talented designer, project manager, and problem solver. His collaborative approach to leadership, robust passion for architecture, and extensive healthcare design knowledge have made Wes a regional thought leader in the healthcare industry.
After eleven years at LGA, Shannon Campbell has been promoted to Associate. A true leader within the Workplace Design Studio, Shannon brings tremendous first-hand knowledge, project guidance, and client-centered focus to the team. Having a background in each of LGA’s six design studios has granted him invaluable expertise and knowledge across several markets, allowing him to bring a fresh perspective and unbound intellect to each project he oversees.
Jesse Gidley, RA, NCARB, CPHC, has been promoted to the role of Senior Associate within the firm. Jesse has been a valued team member for 16 years, overseeing the LGA’s thriving Housing Studio. He is a regional leader in the design of affordable and multi-family housing, having touched over 3,500 beds, totaling $220M throughout his career. Jesse’s technical acumen and project-centered leadership have garnered praise from clients and colleagues alike.
Brian Hengelsberg has been promoted to Senior Associate after 12 years of dedicated service to the firm. Brian oversees LGA’s Aviation Studio, focusing his efforts on the master planning and design of retail and restaurants. His extensive portfolio of work can be seen at nearly every major airport in the United States. A selfless leader, Brian’s positivity and dedication to his team inspires creative design, encourages collaboration, and drives success.
Michael Baker International Congratulates Newly Registered Architect
Congratulations to Mahshid Ghaeeni, AIA, Architecture – Practice, from Michael Baker International’s Moon Township office, who recently earned her Professional Architecture (R.A.) license by passing the Architecture Registration Examinations.
Mahshid joined Michael Baker’s Architecture practice in 2020 and has supported several key Federal projects over the past few years, most recently the Hurricane Florence Recovery packages P142 Fire Stations and P378 CH-53K Aircraft Maintenance Hangar. She is also working on a key local project – the renovations of two transit stops at Dormont and Station Square with our client, the Port Authority of Allegheny County.
New Leadership in Oswald A&E Practice
After nearly 40 years of serving as a leader, educator, advisor, and mentor in the A&E insurance industry, Paula Selvaggio has retired from her position as Oswald Companies’s Senior Vice President and Advisor. The firm is pleased to announce the appointment of Debbie Beebe to practice leader of the firm’s Architects & Engineers Practice.
Debbie brings more than 30 years of professional experience in the A&E industry. In addition to her institutional knowledge of Oswald’s clients, Debbie has an unbridled enthusiasm to work with her colleagues to define the future of Oswald’s A&E practice. Oswald is excited for Debbie to lend her leadership skills in empowering their team and continuing to enhance their progress.
Firms on the Move
One of the Area’s largest architecture firms inks long-term lease in downtown
LGA has signed a long-term lease with the Hertz Investment Group for the entire 15th floor of the Gateway 4 Building in the historic Gateway Center downtown. Designed in 1960 by the renowned architects Harrison & Abramovitz, Four Gateway Center is a key contributor to the Mid-Century Modern Renaissance Historic District.
“We were impressed by Hertz’s forward-thinking approach to redevelopment, providing ample amenities in an unrivaled downtown location,” noted Paulette T. Burns, RA, President of LGA. “Gateway’s easy access to all major highways, abundant parking, and near-by public transportation was a big draw for us”, added Burns.
“Adding a class-leading architectural design firm like LGA is a big win”, said Timothy McCarthy, Senior Vice President and Asset Manager for Hertz. “We not only gained a great tenant but also a great partner,” said McCarthy.
“The recent flurry of activity brings many professional service firms to Four Gateway, making LGA a natural fit,” said Jeremy Kronman, with CBRE, who represented Hertz along with Adam Viccaro and Dominika Demantova. “With LGA and other recent deals, Four Gateway will be nearly fully leased”, noted LGA’s representative, Jack Donahue of Donahue Real Estate Advisors. “I’ve enjoyed helping LGA find the right space for their needs,” added Jack.
LGA has doubled-down in advocating for in-person work. “Zoom is a great tool, but it cannot replace real collaboration,” noted Jonathan Glance, AIA, Vice President of LGA. Having previously signed a letter of intent for 15,000 SF at the Union Trust Building, the firm continued to add talent, growing from 50 to over 70, and quickly realized the need for more space. Bucking the current downsizing trend, they are now increasing their square footage by taking an entire 20,000-square-foot floor at Gateway Center with an anticipated move-in of September 2023. “We need to provide a variety of work environments to retain and recruit great professionals – and that requires more flexible space.”
Re-Imagining Workplaces with AE Works
What people want and need from built environments is evolving. The ways people come together and inhabit physical space have been irrevocably changed by the pandemic and more. Most recently, AE Works has completed several workplace renovations that redefine what the office means. These insights have been shared in the recent Winter 2023 Breaking Ground magazine.
New Projects from CannonDesign
CannonDesign recently completed work on two local projects, Seneca Valley’s Ehrman Crest Elementary and Middle School and Penn Hills Red Phoenix.
CannonDesign is thrilled to share TIME Magazine selected Seneca Valley’s Ehrman Crest Elementary and Middle School as one of its best inventions of 2022. Ehrman Crest earned the distinction as an elementary and middle school that dares to explore what can happen when we design learning spaces more like children’s museums. CannonDesign partnered with the district and the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh to create an entirely new type of school. One that activates learning everywhere: in corridors, indoors, outdoors, in group learning spaces, along peg walls and via environmental graphics. The school is one of just six selected in the design category for TIME’s 2022 list.
Through the firm’s Open Hand Studio pro-bono design arm, CannonDesign had the wonderful opportunity to engage with Penn Hills Red Phoenix in Pittsburgh to help them create a safer, empowering space for Pittsburgh-area youth. Beyond creating an exciting, safe haven for Penn Hills youth, this project is also an opportunity to revitalize a civic asset. The Aster St. Public Library was always intended to be a space for positive community experience that has been vacant for decades. Its rejuvenation will help nourish Penn Hills community fabric by numerous measures.
RM Creative celebrates opening of Allegheny Health Network’s North Fayette Health + Wellness Pavilion
On March 1, representatives from Highmark Health and Allegheny Health Network gathered for a ribbon-cutting for AHN’s new North Fayette Health + Wellness Pavilion by RM Creative. It joins AHN’s other five Health+ Wellness Pavilion locations in Wexford, Bethel Park, Peters Township and Erie’s west and east.
Located on 200 Quinn Drive, the AHN North Fayette Health + Wellness Pavilion will also offer cardiology, behavioral health, primary care, pulmonology, gastroenterology and more. The primary care wing houses 20 exam rooms; the physical and behavioral health wing, upstairs, boasts 36 rooms. The massive center — sprawling 68,000 square feet — has a 3T-MRI machine, the fastest available and AHN’s first in southwestern Pennsylvania, X-ray machines, CT scanners, ultrasounds, an on-site bloodwork lab and an embryology lab with two operating rooms.
Projects from WTW Architects
Oberlin College – Net Zero Ready Student Housing
Oberlin College commissioned WTW Architects to be criteria design architects for a new on-campus student housing facility. Through an intensive series of workshops with student groups and College stakeholders WTW developed a 300 bed program to complement the College’s sustainability initiatives with the ultimate goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2025. Passive House strategies were applied to the design of the building envelope to minimize energy use. LEED and WELL building standards were also included in the design and operation guidelines. The spatial program includes a multipurpose room, music practice rooms and a community kitchen to support students with special dietary needs. The final proposal integrates student life programming to create spaces that support a healthy balance between study, relaxation and socialization while fostering identity and a sense of connection with the Oberlin community.
2023 ACUI Facility Design Award
WTW Architects is proud to announce that the Memorial Union at the University of North Dakota was selected to receive a 2023 Facility Design Award from the Association of College Unions International. With the goal to improve student life through thoughtful design, a steering committee of student leaders and staff envisioned a new Union through a collaborative programming and design process led by WTW. The 155,000 gsf facility is located within the campus historic district and serves as the new ‘front door’ of the university. The Memorial Union is a thriving a hub on the UND campus for student org events, dining, campus programs, and a variety of gatherings large & small. The unique and recognizable building serves as a new welcome mat for the university and offers a place of community that has never before existed on campus. It’s an integral part of the campus fabric and will serve students, staff, and visitors, for decades to come. This project was designed in collaboration with JLG Architects as the associate firm.