RGA Global Headquarters in Chesterfield opens!

By: Bob Dunn

We are proud and excited to watch as finishing touches are applied to the new $150 million Reinsurance Group of America (RGA) global headquarters, opening this month in Chesterfield. This stunningly impressive building was designed for expansion and a smooth workforce transition from baby boomers to millennials.

Fox designed the headquarters interiors and was RGA’s consultant to international architectural firm Gensler on design of the core and shell.

RGA has been a client of ours for more than 20 years, so we based our design on a deep knowledge of the company.

RGA

Here are some photos taken during the final stages of construction:

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RGA Interior 5RGA Interior 7RGA Interior 6RGA interior

 photos ©Tony Schanuel

Trees at the Archgrounds coming down

By: John Berendzen

For the past couple of weeks now we here at Fox have been watching the trees come down at the Arch.  Most of these are ash trees – in danger of dying anyway due to the emerald ash borer beetle.  Its sad but necessary (I guess).  The south leg path shown in the photo below is closed off from visitors, but we have a good vantage point from here on the 18th floor.

The first photo below was taken by Zach Foppe on October 24th.  The one below that is from this morning (November 20th).

arch-tree-1arch-tree-2

Emerson Climate Technologies Innovation Center Groundbreaking – October 17, 2014

By: Joe Burzinski

Ground Breaking Photo

It was an amazing fall day for the groundbreaking celebration for Emerson Climate Technologies’ new Innovation Center on the University of Dayton’s campus.

The highly anticipated event was standing room only and drew the attendance of national, state, and local dignitaries as well as notable members of the University of Dayton administration.

Ed Purvis, Emerson Executive Vice President gave a special call out to Rajan Rajendran for leading the design team on the building which was named “the Helix”.

View from the Office Window

By: John Berendzen

Amazing – right now there are two men hanging off the arch, taking samples of the staining.  The most prominent area of staining is on the north leg, facing west, about 2/3’s of the way up.  One of the engineers is hanging there right now.

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Maryville Students tour RGA

By: John Berendzen

Recently Bob Dunn gave a tour of the soon to be completed RGA World Headquarters to Professor Jessica Senne’s Interior Design Students, Maryville University.  Elizabeth Kastl, one of the students on the tour sent us this description:

“On September ninth, our junior interior detailing class was lucky enough to have a tour of the under-construction RGA Headquarters building in Chesterfield. This building is very close to my apartment, so I have watched the construction progress with much curiosity. Though, who wouldn’t be curious about how that forty foot cantilever works?  Seeing the project almost finished a few weeks ago was an amazing opportunity for our class. We have studied construction strategies through research, conceptually, and digitally; but most of us had not seen something so tangible. We were able to learn valuable information pertinent to our major in an extremely “hands on” fashion. Bob Dunn, our tour guide and a partner at Fox Architects, had all of the behind-the-scenes information of the building through its initial design and construction. He knew that we are all interiors students in detailing class, so he was able to direct the tour towards the parts of the building that most pertained to us students. We saw what happens up inside the ceiling, inside walls, underneath certain flooring materials to achieve the amenities of a building that we always consider. I know that this information will be in the forefront of our minds as we design projects in school and also out in the real world. Our class was tickled to be a part of the atmosphere of a construction site. Our excitement heightened as we tightened our hardhats, fastened our bright vests, and sported our safety goggles. The junior class at Maryville University of St. Louis cannot thank RGA, Fox Architects, and ClayCo enough for giving us the opportunity to use their space and time to further our education and architectural language. Thank you!”

 

-Elizabeth Kastl, Interior Design Student, Maryville University

 

Below are some images from the tour.

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Fox Architects featured in St. Louis Business Journal

By: Elise Novak

This week the St. Louis Business Journal published an article announcing an exciting project we are working on here at Fox: an energy innovation center for the University of Dayton’s campus in Dayton, Ohio.

We are working in partnership with the university and with Emerson’s Climate Technologies division to create a state-of-the-art lab facility with a focus on improving energy performance in several industries: commercial refrigeration, residential technologies, data centers, commercial kitchens and supermarkets. The design features flexible spaces that are open and collaborative in nature, including a employee support workspace, classrooms, meeting rooms, and training spaces. The project fosters innovation through the clever use of technology, and encourages industry leaders to be good stewards to future generations.

The project is pursuing LEED certification and is anticipated to open in the winter of 2015.

Read the St. Louis Business Journal’s article here .

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Summer Sketching, Coffeeshops and Urban Renewal

By: John Berendzen

Our summer sketching season is in full swing.  This past Friday we visited Stone Spiral Coffee & Curios, a new stop on the sketching circuit.  The coffee was great, outside and inside were awesome – a very nice place to spend the morning.  It took me a while to find it.  I knew it was on Sutton in Maplewood.  I’m familar with the area of Sutton just south of Manchester Road – there’s a lot of renovation that’s happened there in the past few years.  Stone Spiral is north of Manchester though, in what’s essentially a neighborhood, a couple of blocks from the mercantile zone along Manchester.

We visit a lot of coffee shops in conjunction with our sketching.  This got us thinking: you could probably graph the number and quality of neighborhood coffee shops and compare that to the revitalization of a neighborhood.  The two would track side by side.  I’ll admit I’ve haven’t been to Maplewood lately, but driving around looking for Stone Spiral it was obvious that there’s a lot going on in this area, including more coffee shops to put on the docket for summer sketching.  It’s great to see so many positive things happening in our hometown!

stone spiral 1 stone spiral 2

Forty-Seven Views of Leslie Laskey

By: John Berendzen

You can now see the independent film Forty-Seven Views of Leslie Laskey online at this website.  The film follows Laskey over an 11 year period, as he paints, prints, teaches and shares his views on life and the creative process.  The cello music in the background is wonderful.  By filmakers David Wild and Lulu Gargiulo, it’s a portrait of a man who shaped the lives of countless architects in St. Louis and around the world.

 

Leslie Laskey at his 90th Birthday party

Leslie Laskey at his 90th Birthday party

There is No Place Like Home

By: Frank Rosario

“The Greenest Building Is . . . The One Already Built” is the title of an article penned by Carl Elefante, AIA, LEED AP in 2007 and published that summer in the Forum Journal of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  Sentiments expressed in that piece -including an acknowledgement of the challenges of transforming modern-era buildings to sustainable levels- are ones that many of today’s architects grapple with in dialogue with clients.  The same is true of this architect (and spouse-as-client) when it came time to transition from our 25-years of stewardship of an Arts & Crafts bungalow to a smaller abode.  See picture below.  To be honest, the wonderfully-light, energy-inefficient windows in the picture were since replaced with bronze-aluminum sliders by the immediate-past Owner, but (fingers-crossed) spouse-client can be persuaded to replace the replacements with ones truer to the Streamline Moderne style.  Onward to days of Future Past.

75-yr old Modern

75-yr old Moderne

SMU Datacenter Systems Engineering Symposium

By: John Berendzen

The Bobby B Lyle School of Engineering, Southern Methodist University in Dallas will be hosting a symposium May 5th 2014 entitled “Opportunities for Datacenters: Data Management –  Facilities and Reliability – Security, Energy and Workforce Requirements”  This symposium is part of the new Datacenter Systems Engineering program that SMU has recently launched.

 

I am serving on the Advisory Board for the program, along with other individuals representing the school and industry.

 

From SMU’s website:

“This program is specifically designed for professionals who are actively employed in the management of data and the extraction of useful information, computer networking, virtualization, and security. Additionally, this program addresses the design and maintenance of datacenters; its mission critical facility subsystems and is well suited for students to gain working knowledge and skill sets necessary to enter this field.”

This should be an exciting program – hope to see you in Dallas May 5th.  The event starts with breakfast at 7:30 and finishes at 10:00 a.m.