|how we work||Our firm takes pride in providing thorough, thoughtful service and delivering high quality, innovative work within time and budget constraints. We are committed to practicing architecture as a broad based discipline and often provide services beyond the architect's standard scope of work. These services range from visionary ecological urban design to fabrication of custom furniture and fixtures.
Our design seeks to create a partnership between building and landscape, actively engaging building inhabitants at many scales. In this context, we approach every project with sustainable materials and practices in the forefront of our thinking. Within project constraints we optimize daylighting, natural ventilation and energy performance.
We cultivate a respectful, amicable professional collaboration among client, contractor and consultants to assure that the design and construction process is productive and rewarding for all parties. Based on years of experience, we bring attention to detail and an understanding of materials to bear on each project, from the tactile and sensual to the technical and pragmatic, regardless of scale and budget. Our detailing and materials specifications draw upon renewable resources and reliable building science.
|GHA recognizes an obligation to engage the urgent ecological and economic challenges of our times. In response we have articulated three areas of emphasis where we seek to expand our expertise, form new partnerships, and actively seek new opportunities:
Referred to by proponents like Ray Cole of the University of British Columbia as ‚ÄúRegenerative Design,‚Ä this approach goes beyond the basic principal of mitigating harm, to a ‚Äúco-evolutionary, partnered relationship between humans and nature.‚Ä Inspired by this idea, we have designed projects that repair and regenerate their sites, seeking to heal damaged ecosystems and socio-economic conditions. Projects that aspire to these goals include the Santa Cruz Mountains Residence, the Alcatraz Avenue Commercial Renovation and the Lake Merritt Floating Treatment Wetland.
Recently GHA has developed collaborative relationships with several progressive non-profit organizations such as Habitat for Humanity East
| Bay, Eco-City Builders and the HOPE Collaborative. Working with these groups we have helped to develop projects that emphasize economic opportunity, community revitalization and re-connection to natural systems. These projects include the Edes Avenue Community Market for East Oakland, Village Bottoms Cultural District, Kathmandu Living Cities Competition, and ongoing Habitat East Bay Projects.
water smart design
Spending time exploring California‚Äôs High Sierra and struggling urban watersheds has given Geoff an indelible impression of the preciousness of California‚Äôs water resources. He has written on the subject in arcCA Magazine. He has also become an ARCSA Accredited rainwater catchment systems designer, and developed additional experience in greywater re-use. Working with the DIG Cooperative, Watersprout and Eco-City Builders, GHA has brought this new expertise to the Berkeley Flats Residence, the Green Alcatraz Avenue Commercial Renovation, the Queens Road House and the Kathmandu Living Cities Competition.