A conduit between the project team and client, Stephen’s skillset spans the design, management and delivery of high-profile projects.
His expertise in the commercial sector and he also plays an integral part in running our London office, coordinating projects and developing strong links with our other sectors.
What is the current big trend in student living?
Health and wellbeing is a big priority. Clients are looking for buildings that can offer a more balanced lifestyle to occupants.
This has led to the increased use of natural light and ventilation, with some clients considering ‘grow your own’ facilities. Gyms and shared kitchens continue to prove popular, encouraging social interaction, and more emphasis is placed on the quality of outdoor spaces.
What is your proudest moment?
It is always satisfying to complete a project and walk around with the client knowing that the decisions you have made together have been successful.
It is also great to be accepted for projects after all the effort that has gone into the bid. The University of Hertfordshire stands out because this was at a time when the market was in recession.
Why did you choose a career in architecture?
I loved technical drawing as a teenager and visited Auckland University to determine if engineering (possibly fluid dynamics) or architecture was for me.
My time spent in architecture offices during work experience, and time with older friends in drafting offices, confirmed architecture as my preferred career path.
Who is your biggest career influence?
Mike Cole, my mentor and previous employer at ArcHaus Architects in New Zealand. To become registered in New Zealand you need to have a mentor. He invited me to work with him and he has had such a big influence on my career. Mike has a clear vision of the ‘big picture’. He focusses on the client’s needs, but also understands the key factors that determine the economic viability of a scheme. This is balanced with his ‘edgy’ design flair.
If you weren’t an architect, what would you be?
I’d be attempting to become an Olympic yachtsman. I’ve sailed a Flying 15 at various National and World Championships. More recently, cycling has come to the forefront of my spare time, and I enjoy a Sportive whenever I can (recommend Girona Gran Fondo).
- Member of the New Zealand Institute of Architects