By Michael J. Crosbie
The success of the creation of a contemporary work of architecture depends upon something typically not discussed in design education, rarely considered in criticism or theory, and frequently missing in most writing about the profession and its legacy: human relationships. The reality is that architecture, for better or worse, is the result of interactions that transpire between scores of people involved in bringing a design from embryonic state to execution in three dimensions, to live in the fourth dimension: time. With complex projects, thousands of people might be involved: clients, architects, consultants, and project teams gathered around a shared goal of realizing a new work of architecture.
Executives of New Haven-based architectural firm Pickard Chilton like to say the company “punches above its weight. That may be one reason the firm not only weathered the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, it thrived during that time. From March 2020 through May of this year, Pickard Chilton added contracts to design new headquarters or redevelop existing buildings totaling almost 11 million square feet. That’s in addition to the approximately 19 million square feet of projects it already had under contract. To put that in context, the company calculated there is about 10 million square feet of office space in Hartford, so Pickard Chilton’s contracts equal three Hartford’s worth of space.
New Haven, Connecticut-headquartered global architecture studio Pickard Chilton has announced that it will lead the design of a freeway-abutting, 38-story new office tower in downtown Dallas. Dubbed Field Street Tower, the Hillwood Urban-developed high-rise, at 600 feet, will stand as the tallest office tower to join the skyline of Texas’s third most populous city in 30 years. Per Pickard Chilton, the glass-sheathed structure will serve as a “new centerpiece of the city’s skyline.”
Reflecting on what we have all recently experienced, our physical relationship with the workplace has out of necessity become more fluid. However, we believe that this pandemic will be the catalyst that will accelerate positive change in workplace design.
Douglas Spencer, an internationally renowned architectural theorist, has been named the next Pickard Chilton Professor in Architecture in the Iowa State University College of Design.
Spencer, an associate professor and director of graduate education in the ISU Department of Architecture, is widely recognized for his research and writing on the politics and theory of contemporary architecture.
The team behind the redevelopment of Metro's longtime downtown D.C. headquarters has selected Pickard Chilton of New Haven, Connecticut as the project's lead architect and CBRE to market the new office space.
“The location and timing of the redesign of 600 Fifth Street NW presents a once-in-a generation development opportunity,” Pickard Chilton Principal Jon Pickard said in a statement. “At a time when many organizations are reevaluating their office space requirements and workplace priorities, we have the unique opportunity to holistically reimagine an entire city block from the inside out."