ZGF Architects is a design firm with an intentionally diverse portfolio including healthcare facilities, mixed-use developments, corporate campuses and museums. A practice with more than 600 professionals and offices in Portland, Seattle, Los Angeles, Washington DC, New York City, and Vancouver BC, the studio has an ethos of collaboration, design excellence, stewardship of their natural and built environment, and exceptional client service. In this article, we will talk about the diverse portfolio of ZGF Architects!
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In addition to receiving more than 1000 design awards, ZGF Architects has been honoured with the American Institute of Architects’ highest honour, the Architecture Firm Award, recognized for “creatively transforming client needs and aspirations into elegant, inventive architectural form, and establishing a standard of excellence and expectation of quality to which other firms aspire.”
ZGF Architects believes that human performance, well-being and inspiration are influenced by the physical environment. The studio thinks beyond technical solutions to integrate beauty, materiality and craft into everything they touch. ZGF Architects designs buildings, plan communities, creates art, and develops responsive, humane environments for all generations. The studio’s architecture and design portfolio include projects at all scales, across the nation.
ZGF Architects – California Institute of Technology, The Bechtel Residence
As part of a Tri-Party IPD Agreement with Caltech and MATT Construction, ZGF Architects designed the new Bechtel Residence with the goal of creating an on-campus living experience that retains the critical elements of Caltech’s communal housing culture, while also presenting a new paradigm for the Institute’s student residences. Firmly rooted in the surrounding landscape, the 105,000 SF building wraps around the site, modulating its scale in response to varying edge conditions and creating a protected central courtyard that forms an outdoor living room to encourage interaction. The three-story, 223-bed residence reflects a “home away from home” approach with student bedrooms organized into suites of four to 12 with shared restrooms and living spaces. In addition, a variety of communal spaces including kitchens, common lounge areas and study rooms of different sizes, and a dining facility are provided to build a sense of community. Designed to achieve net-zero energy, the LEED Platinum Bechtel Residence is a deceptively sophisticated building with cutting-edge sustainability solutions seamlessly integrated into the design. Hidden from view, rooftop photovoltaic panels generate enough energy on-site to power the building. Various measures have been taken to minimize solar heat gain, which, coupled with the use of active chilled beams for interior climate control, have contributed significantly to a reduction in baseline energy needs. With a view to future innovations, the building is also net-zero water-ready, with piping and systems in place for such time as the campus implements a water reuse system.
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ZGF Architects – Daniels Real Estate, Stadium Place Mixed-Use Development
Stadium Place is the centrepiece of the 1,100,000 SF North Lot Development, a transformational mixed-use project that includes two city blocks and nearly four acres of previously undeveloped land that was used for event parking for two adjacent professional sports venues in Seattle’s South Downtown. Ideally located next to the region’s primary transit hub, the project is the largest transit-oriented development in the Pacific Northwest, adding necessary 24/7 live-work-play vitality to a previously uninhabited part of Seattle’s urban core. The 675,000 SF Phase 1 Stadium Place was designed to simultaneously blend with and quite literally reflect the buildings within the adjacent historic Pioneer Square, making a bold statement about the rejuvenation of the district and acting as a catalyst for future development. Two distinct but complementary residential towers – The Nolo and The Waveform Stadium Place and rise above a shared retail and parking podium, each offering 360-degree views of the city and a range of indoor and outdoor amenities for residents. The 11-story Nolo mimics the scale and character of the adjacent historic masonry buildings and is aimed at attracting residents who desire loft-style living with high ceilings, raw finishes, and open floor plans. The 26-story Wave has a faceted and deliberate ethereal quality, offering an upscale living experience. The project is LEED Silver.
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ZGF Architects – Unico Propeties LLC, The NV
ZGF Architects, in association with Ankrom Moisan, designed The NV, a 26-story, 376,634 SF, full-block mixed-use residential tower sitting above a two-story podium with two levels of below-grade parking in Portland’s Pearl District. The project includes 284 for rent units featuring full views of downtown and the Willamette River anchored by ground-floor retail and adjoined by two landscaped public plazas. Designed to appeal to a variety of lifestyles, The NV consists of six different unit types including townhouses and lofts. To blend with the neighbourhood, the building is grounded by the richly hued clinker brick podium with a landscaped roof containing amenities such as an outdoor kitchen, fire pit, children’s play area, and yoga studio. The 252-foot tower rising above the podium is rotated off the city grid to optimize views and enhance privacy for tenants. Clad in textured and coloured stainless steel shingles, it captures and reflects the changing light. The NV is LEED Gold.
ZGF Architects – Microsoft, Building 42
ZGF Architects worked as part of an integrated Design-Build team to deliver Microsoft’s Building 42, a 175,760 SF renovated, four-story office building. As one of the first Intelligent Workplace (IW) projects, the design team worked closely with user groups to create a program that responds to various workstyles and fosters flexibility and transparency. Organized into neighbourhoods by functional group, workspaces include open plan offices surrounded by breakout spaces with a variety of furniture and writable surfaces. Support spaces throughout the building include three themed speciality rooms per floor that encourage interaction and movement; relaxation rooms and libraries for heads-down work. Hubs are located on each floor and include kitchens and informal dining areas. Adjacent to the lobby and near the centre of the building, a large common space features dining recreation and casual seating. Garage doors allow the space to be partitioned. A communicating central stairway connects all floors with the lobby and spurs spontaneous collaboration. Interiors emphasize materiality and muted colours native to the Pacific Northwest and artwork from the Microsoft Collection.
ZGF Architects – Project Ecological Development, The Emery
This 118-unit, 88,000 SF, the mixed-use residential building provides housing for adult students attending Portland State University, Oregon State University, and Oregon Health & Science University. The ground level includes a residential entry lobby, retail podium, building support spaces, and bicycle parking, as well as two restaurants. The building exterior is designed to enhance the character of the area with an engaging urban form. The upper levels are clad with materials that are durable, innovative, and respect the traditions of craft established by the surrounding industries. Conceived and designed to maximize space and offer a smart living environment, the apartments capture as much daylight as possible with large windows that also offer inspiring views. A shared lounge on the second floor acts as a central living room and includes a large community table, a fireplace, a video screen, and interaction areas for both work and play. The building, which achieved LEED Silver certification, incorporates sustainable design strategies, such as a green roof, high-performance glazing, highly insulated walls, daylighting and access to views, natural ventilation, low-flow fixtures, and the use of sustainable materials. Flow-through stormwater planters are placed next to the residential and retail entries to showcase rain events.
ZGF Architects – Buccini/Pollin Group, Inc., Canopy by Hilton
When the Hilton Hotels & Resorts decided to open the first West Coast property of their new lifestyle brand, Canopy by Hilton Portland Pearl District, they sought a design that would fit with the neighbourhood and elegantly blend old and new. Located in the heart of a revitalized industrial zone, ZGF Architects designed the exterior and provided interior planning for the 10-story, 153-room hotel to bring together local residents and hotel guests to celebrate and experience the vibrant neighbourhood’s many offerings, including boutiques, art galleries, microbreweries, green space, and eateries. The hotel’s design acts as a bridge between old and new neighbourhood structures and purposefully incorporates a palette of exterior materials that complement the Pearl District’s freight and warehouse past. The exterior takes its cues from nearby structures. Folded sculptural concrete planes signify entrances, provide cover, and add variation in the framed openings at the base. Custom print aged-bronze finish aluminium panels on the façade alternate with floor-to-ceiling glass windows to create dynamism and reflection; and the panels themselves serve as a piece of art, appearing to change their golden hue with the daylight. Large, expansive windows at the street level allow for activity in the hotel’s shared spaces to carry out to the sidewalk. Inside, a day-light winter garden, featuring skylights and vegetation expanding vertically, functions as a centrepiece of activity and brings light into the subterranean conference facility as well as lobby, bar, and café areas. The hotel achieved LEED Gold certification.
ZGF Architects – Publishers Clearing House, Corporate Headquarters
Publishers Clearing House (PCH), a company best known for the roving prize patrol van and surprise delivery of giant checks, needed a workspace that would reflect and support its continuing evolution from direct marketing to a multi-channel, digital media venture. ZGF Architects partnered with PCH to realize the vision of a space respectful of the company’s past but firmly focused on its future. To understand the evolving needs and unique interdependencies of the company, the ZGF Architects’ team immersed themselves in PCH’s process and culture, including spending time with a dozen diverse business units to understand how they interacted with one another. The result is a three-story headquarters in Jericho, New York that makes the transition from outdated private offices to an open, collaborative space with workstations as varied as the needs of the PCH team. These include one- to two-person focus rooms, open and closed team rooms, larger conference rooms, a multipurpose conference and training centre, and extensive studios for video and photography production. The 177,000 SF vertical campus is oriented around a three-story atrium that both accommodates PCH events and visually and socially connects each floor. A dining and work café provides space for formal and informal meetups throughout the day, whether at a communal table, in a banquette, or by the fireplace in the library lounge. The overall sensation of a dynamic and interconnected company is amplified by the material layering of high-quality stone, glass, and wood shifted planes that imply movement and connection, and hand-made wood and steel partitions that provide privacy while maintaining visibility between teams.
ZGF Architects – Science Center / Wexford Science + Technology, uCity Square Master Plan
ZGF Architects has been collaborating with Wexford Science + Technology and the University City Science Center for more than ten years on the revitalization of the uCity Square area in Philadelphia, transforming it into a centre for innovation, collision, connectivity, and entrepreneurship. Located between Drexel University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, the current uCity Square portfolio encompasses a powerful mix of clinical, laboratory, office, and residential properties; innovation space; public green space; and retail. ZGF Architects was an integral part of the original uCity Square master planning team, leading the massing, programming, and conceptual design for over 1,000,000 SF of commercial, office, and laboratory space. The studio has also designed and constructed 3711 Science Center, 3737 Science Center, and 3675 Market Street, and is currently designing One uCity, all located within uCity Square. One uCity will provide 498,000 SF of multi-tenant spaces.
ZGF Architects – AMLI Arc Residential Tower
ZGF Architects provided planning and design for the 421,416 SF, a 41-story residential tower with 393 units, part of a larger 728,712 SF mixed-use development that includes a 307,296 SF office tower for Amazon in Seattle’s burgeoning Denny Triangle neighbourhood. A continuous façade envelops both towers and unifies the development while contrasting curtainwalls and fenestration distinguish between the office and residential components. The tower features extensive daylighting, access to views and landscaped streetscape improvements to foster the connection to the neighbourhood and transparent nature of the tower. A variety of unit floor plans range from studios to three bedrooms and are organized into three different zones to appeal to diverse resident groups and lifestyles. The design prioritizes wellness, social interaction and connection to the outdoors with the inclusion of informal lounge areas and landscaped outdoor amenity spaces. Other features include a fitness centre, media room, makers spaces, community kitchen, private meeting rooms, a dog run, and below-grade parking. The interior design mixes various textures with raw details and a rich palette drawn from the natural environment of the Pacific Northwest. This building is LEED Gold.
ZGF Architects – Century Group / Surrey City Development Corporation, 3 Civic Plaza
3 Civic Plaza is to Surrey’s City Centre what the Marine Building was to Vancouver’s downtown in the 1930s. It is a form-maker today for the emerging second urban centre in British Columbia’s Lower Mainland region, and it will be a landmark for decades to come. Rising to 52 storeys, and home to western Canada’s first Marriott Autograph Collection Hotel, 3 Civic Plaza is the tallest tower south of the Fraser River. Designed to complement its surroundings while adding an iconic quality to Surrey’s emerging City Centre, 3 Civic Plaza features 353 residential units, Marriott’s 144-room hotel, Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s new urban campus, a rooftop garden, a state-of-the-art fitness facility, and a sweeping central lobby that unites the building’s many uses. Stakeholder groups were engaged to envisage the Civic Plaza of the future, and determine a mix of uses appropriate to the existing City Centre while predicting and successfully responding to future requirements. The challenge of structurally different uses was addressed through a unique solution: an innovative external concrete shear wall with distinctive, guitar pick-shaped window openings. The building element allowed for flexibility in planning the configuration of space, circulation, and structure to best suit each user. Sustainable design and user comfort strategies include natural ventilation, hydronic heating, and connection to a district energy system.
ZGF Architects – Kaufman Jacobs, Block 300 Interiors Renovation
The Block 300, formerly Robert Duncan Plaza, building was originally designed by ZGF for Melvin Mark Companies and later purchased by Kaufman Jacobs. In 2013, two-thirds of the tenant space in Block 300 was vacated when federal tenants relocated. Building upon our original design, ZGF Architects was engaged to renovate the interior and to help reposition the building as a Class A office space to attract new tenants. The renovated public lobby provides a welcoming approach from the street, featuring a modern interior that includes a lounge seating area and a double-sided fireplace. The pass-through lobby has two entrances and uses accent lighting and wood to accentuate the space, as well as highly reflective surfaces to help provide volume. Hospitality was a key design goal; the concierge desk was designed to hide the necessary security equipment. Behind the desk is a living green wall, serving as a focal point and visible from the elevator bay and the large conference room off the lobby. The lobby also houses an interactive art installation that adds texture and interest, particularly for the children who attend the daycare located on the ground floor. The interactive display monitors people passing by via motion sensors and reflects the movement with light; it is the only North American commercial installation of a Phillips Organic Light Emitting Diode. The team incorporated numerous green updates into the design, which has achieved LEED Gold.
ZGF Architects – Gerding Edlen Development Company, Twelve
Rising 22 stories above Portland, Oregon’s evolving West End neighbourhood, Twelve | West is a 550,000 SF mixed-use building designed by ZGF Architects to serve as a laboratory for sustainable design and workplace strategies. The double LEED Platinum-certified building features street-level retail space, four floors that house ZGF Architects’ Portland office, 17 floors of apartments, and five levels of below-grade parking. The building has an eco-roof, a rooftop garden and terrace space, a complete fitness studio, and a theatre. Four wind turbines sit prominently atop the building, representing the first U.S. installation of a wind turbine array on an urban, high-rise. Twelve | West serves as not only an anchor in a rapidly transforming neighbourhood but also as a demonstration project to inform future sustainable building design. The building is located immediately south of Portland’s well-known Pearl District – an acclaimed urban renewal district that is considered a model of life, work and play mixed-use development. Twelve | West’s site was selected in part to serve as a catalyst for additional transformation in the West End. The goal is to create a significant retail and pedestrian connection to the Central Business District to the southeast and the mixed-use neighbourhoods to the north and west of the West End.
To see more about the diverse portfolio from ZGF Architects, visit their website!
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