Overview

The architectural scene in the flourishing city of Austin reflects a commitment to sustainability, the natural landscape, and contemporary elements. Architects are curious to see how they can incorporate adaptive reuse elements, especially in the workplace. Commercial space is constantly being designed and developed due to the city’s rapid growth. Many startup companies have their roots in Austin due to its bustling commercial market.

The following list ranks the best office architects in Austin. These architects specialize in creating office space based on the needs and goals of the diverse companies they serve. The firms on this list are all staffed by award-winning architects; these firms deliver high-quality spaces with innovative and sustainable designs.

Top Architects

Alterstudio Architects

Architects:
Kevin Alter
Ernesto Cragnolino
Tim Whitehill

Awards:

2017 Residential Architecture Design Awards,
The American Architecture Prize 2017,
IIDA Design Excellence Award,
Architect’s Newspaper Best of Design Awards for 2017

Address:
1801 Lavaca Street #106, Austin, TX 78701

About Alterstudio Architects

Alterstudio Architects was started in 2000 by Kevin Alter, who studied at Bennington College and received his Master of Architecture from Harvard University. In 2003, Ernesto Cragnolino joined the studio and a partnership was formed in 2005. Today, there are three partners and nine architectural staff members who work in a variety of areas, always aiming for high-quality craftsmanship and long-term sustainability. The team’s work has been featured in publications such as Dwell Magazine, Texas Architect, Austin Home Magazine, Interior Design, Architectural Record, and The Wall Street Journal. Alterstudio has won over 175 awards throughout its industry tenure including the Firm Achievement Award, which is the highest honor that AIA Austin gives. The award honors an architecture firm for its outstanding contributions to the community and profession or for producing remarkable architecture.

Featured Projects

Alterstudio recently worked on the 6,500 square feet office headquarters for Peddle in Austin. The space was originally a 19th-century general store with added elements constructed in the 1940s. The existing building was in a state of disrepair and required a major overhaul. Alterstudio started with the renovation of the top floor, removing standard partitions and lay-in ceilings. Reclaimed wood from local barns was used for floors and walls and installed steel fixtures and hardware that served as accents. The design earned Alterstudio an AIA Design Award, and an International Interior Design Association (IIDA) Design Excellence Award in 2013. The firm also worked on a design office, which was constructed in the 1960s Cambridge Tower. The team stripped the existing space back to expose the concrete frame and added new white oak floors as well as white oak cabinets and screens. Raw cork and mill-finished steel serve as accents throughout the open and creative space. The office won eight awards, including the AIA National 2019 Institute Honor Award for Interior Architecture.

Chioco Design

Architects:
Jamie Chioco

Awards:
Urban Land Institute Awards,
Best Outside Design – Restaurant and Bar Design Awards

Address:
1306 Rosewood Avenue, Austin, Texas 78702

About Chioco Design

Chioco Design is a small firm in Austin, Texas founded in 2005 by Jamie Chioco, who has lived in the area for more than 20 years. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma School of Architecture and is personally invested in the design elements Austin. Chioco Design’s work can be seen all around the city as well as in Tennessee, Colorado, and California. The firm works on both residential and commercial projects, with a solid commitment to using local materials and craftspeople. Chioco excels in client communication and sees function as a crucial aspect of design work. The firm’s work has been featured in Architect Magazine, Archdaily, Eater Austin, The Austin Chronicle, and Apartment Therapy.

“Oftentimes, it’s the restrictions and constraints of a project that inspire us to come up with creative solutions.” -Jamie Chioco

Featured Projects

One of their featured projects is the office space for Invenergy. The original site offers great views of the Austin region, a trait that played a key role in the overall design. The conference room has an especially stunning view of SoCo and Austin’s skyline. Translucent walls are used throughout the office to allow more natural light and visual privacy. A beveled ceiling subtly nods to the company’s vision in promoting wind power. Another office design by Chioco is the Resignation Media. They had to completely renovate the 11,690 square feet space for the umbrella company, which includes a photo entertainment website, a non-profit charity, a music festival organization, and a beer label. The firm was still able to create a cohesive design by using a carefully selected material palette to build four different offices for the building.

Gensler

Architects:
Andy Cohen
Diane Hoskins

Awards:
ENR #1 Green Building Design Firm in Commercial Offices
Building Design + Construction Giants #1 Office Sector Architecture Firm

Address:
212 Lavaca Street, Suite 390, Austin, TX 78701

About Gensler

As one of the largest firms in the world, Gensler is a leading industry powerhouse with over 600 million square feet of projects. The firm is committed to sustainable building and partners with community organizations all over the world to affect social change. Andy Cohen and Diane Hoskins spearhead this formidable firm as co-CEOs, leading over 5,000 employees across 44 offices and serving clients in over 120 countries. Cohen and Hoskins both made the Business Insider’s elite “Creators” list, a collection of the world’s 100 top creative visionaries. Gensler topped the list as the number 1 firm in ENR 2016’s Top 150 Global Design Firms. They also were the No. 1 architecture firm for Architectural Record 2016 Top 300.

Featured Projects

Gensler designed an outdoor lifestyle brand’s headquarters in the southwest part of the city. The palette was inspired by nature and used wood, concrete, and metal materials to create an environment-based aesthetic. Industrial fasteners, cables, and hooks were used in the headquarters to reflect the brand’s culture of durability and outdoor adventure. Gensler also designed the headquarters for Zilliant, a leading sales optimization company that is on the verge of major growth. Built in a vintage 1950s office building, the workplace features low-panel benching workstations, flexible workspaces, and centralized conference and huddle rooms that promote collaboration. Gensler used bold colors, lighting, and materials for its design, and despite a limited budget, Zilliant noted that the new space has improved the staff’s morale.

GSC Architects

Address:
3100 Alvin DeVane Blvd., Building A Suite 200-B, Austin, TX 78741

About GSC Architects

GSC Architects is a renowned Texas firm that specializes in commercial, municipal, and interior design projects. Principals Tom Cornelius, Steven Burch, and Bonny Gray lead the operations as CEO, interior designer, and associate principal, respectively. The team has a strong commitment to client relations that complements its design prowess. GSC’s successful work in their core markets propelled the studio to prominence, earning accolades such as the 2018 Eagle Award for Renovation from the ABC Central Texas and the 2017 Outstanding Building of the Year Award from Builder Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International. The USGBC affiliate also integrates environmentally-conscious designs into their projects.

Featured Projects

The HPI Davenport West is a 285,000 square feet facility located in San Clemente. Two goals were accomplished for the five-story property’s design⁠—one is to create an aesthetic that complements the modern environment and the other is to upgrade the architecture to contemporary and even future Class A office standards. The high rise is made of precast concrete and glass, with continuous windows all around the perimeter of the office levels. Each floor features different points of vertical circulation and the floor plates are specially designed for both single-use and multi-tenant finish outs in high density, flexible open, or closed office spaces. A parking garage was designed for the establishment as well as a separate office building.

lauckgroup

Architects:
Alan Lauck
Anne Kniffen
Brigitte Preston

Address:
106 East 6th Street, Suite 700, Austin, Texas 78701

About lauckgroup

lauckgroup was founded in 1984 by Alan Lauck and is now co-owned by Anne Kniffen and Brigitte Preston. Kniffen is managing principal and Preston is the principal of design; Steve Breuer and Joe Gowing serve as additional principals. Lauckgroup is especially dedicated to sustainability, which is practiced by its Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified architects. They look to provide creative eco-friendly solutions and services that include sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, material selection, and indoor environmental quality. The firm is known for its innovative creativity and has become a go-to firm for many of the new offices in the city. In addition to its Austin headquarters, the firm also has offices in Houston and Dallas.

Featured Projects

lauckgroup designed the HomeAway office space. Since the company is in the travel industry, vacation destinations—portrayed in a high-end aesthetic— served as themes for each level. Rustic materials such as wood, raw limestone, and steel were used as the design palette. The floor plates were all planned on modular pod systems that encourage flexibility and growth. Unique features include a travel tunnel and a four-level tree and birdhouse meeting room. lauckgroup also provided the design for the 175,000 square feet Solarwinds office space. Three-dimensional elements were used in the bold and contemporary entry space, featuring contrasting materials like white walls with oxidized metals and wood veneers. Graphic signs guide people throughout the building.

Mark Odom Studio

Architects:
Mark Odom

Address:
1009 West 6th Street, Suite 50 Austin, Texas 78703

About Mark Odom Studio

Formerly Odom Turner Studio, Mark Odom Studio has been headed by principal Mark Odom since 1999. Odom received his undergraduate degree in Environmental Design and his Master of Architecture from NewSchool of Architecture. He has continued his involvement in education throughout his career by teaching and serving on architectural review committees at Texas A&M University, University of Texas at Austin, and University of Houston. The studio looks for clients who are interested in exploration. They use the quote, “continuously looking for a balanced orchestra between the controlled elegance of simplicity and energy of the site,” to express their vision as a firm.

Featured Projects

One of their most well-known projects is the Bumble headquarters in Austin. The design includes many feminine details including a glam room with a hair-washing station for blow-outs, cold brew and beer on tap, a Mommy zone, and a meditation room. The 4,600 square feet workplace is bumblebee themed with a warm yellow palette and exudes a welcoming atmosphere with plenty of open communal spaces. Another example of their office design work is the Levander Office Renovation. Transforming an unused lighting warehouse, Mark Odom Studio created a co-working space and a bar that accommodates 140 members. The bar has both counter space and booths to serve all networking needs, created to help individuals or teams collaborate with each other through an interdisciplinary professional and social space.

Matt Fajkus Architecture

Architects:
Matt Fajkus
Sarah Johnson
Ingrid Gonzalez Featherston
Daniel Garcia
Tony Marco
Gustavo Lopez
Laine Hardy
Shelby Taubenkimel

Awards:
2019 AIA National Design Award,
2019 AIA Homes Tour Recognition,
2018 Urban Land Institute Impact Awards Finalist,
2017 AIA Austin Honor Award,
2011, 2013, 2017, Texas Society of Architects Studio Awards,
2014 AIA National Award,
2012, 2014 AIA Emerging Professionals Selection,
2012 The Spark International Design Awards

Address:
900 East 6th Street, Suite 100, Austin, TX 78702

About Matt Fajkus Architecture

Matt Fajkus Architecture (MF Architecture) is an award-winning and licensed architecture and interior design practice that welcomes residential and commercial projects, both small and large. The design work of Matt Fajkus Architecture is based on the belief that each project is unique, as it should be driven by the client, the site, and functional requirements, rather than a singular, preconceived aesthetic. The firm aims for clear and simple solutions to complex problems by blending expertise as well as experimentation. The practice brings collaborative energy to every project, and is simultaneously an academic think tank, directly connected to theoretical and technological research at the University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture, while also practicing with a deep focus on realizing exceptional buildings. Matt Fajkus Architecture has been recognized locally and nationally by different organizations and publications such as The Wall Street Journal, National Public Radio, Texas Society of Architects, and Dwell Magazine. The practice was awarded a 2019 AIA National Design Award for the Westlake Dermatology Marble Falls medical office building.

Featured Projects

One of the practices’s noteworthy office designs is the RigUp headquarters office. The office is 24,000 square feet and fills an entire floor of a downtown Austin skyscraper. The primary design charge by RigUp, a dynamic Austin startup business, was to both create an inspiring workplace that efficiently functions for office activities, as well as to symbolically engender the brand externally. A more specific request was the design of a simple, modern, and warm work space for a growing team of more than 100 employees. The young, tech-savvy company was looking to minimize distractions while also offering a cozy and residential feel to a commercial work environment. The objectives were achieved through the layout, material selection, integrated biophilic design, and a collaborative approach throughout the design process. The overall outcome of this project is a work environment that is functional yet inviting – eliminating the notion of a sterile office setting. The material palette also reinforces this notion by inserting a selection of muted white oak and warm felt tones throughout. Biophilia is consistently considered, as the entire space is laced with a series of integral plant walls and low planters are further utilized to bring down the scale and enable an element of natural connection in a vibrant work space.

Michael Hsu Office of Architecture

Architects:
Michael Hsu

Awards:
AIA Austin Firm Achievement Award,
IIDA Texas/Oklahoma Chapter Retail Design Excellence Award,
Austin Business Journal Commercial Real Estate Award

Address:
4910 Burnet Road, Austin, TX 78756

About Michael Hsu Office of Architecture

Michael Hsu Office of Architecture was originally the Michael Hsu Design Office, which was founded in 2005. The firm’s focus is on architecture and interiors that are locally engaged and design-driven. Principal Michael Hsu works with three partners: Jay Colombo, Maija Kreishman, and Micah Land. The firm practices green building and opts to use natural materials for their residential, commercial, and restaurant projects. The team is also an active designer in many reuse projects. MHOA is committed to sustainability and decreasing their carbon footprint. They assemble teams made up of local artists and craftsmen whenever they can to create textiles, furnishings, light fixtures, and artwork. The firm earned the 2016 AIA Austin Firm Achievement Award and is a certified Minority-Owned Business Enterprise in Austin.

Featured Projects

One of the firm’s noteworthy office designs is for Canopy, a creative office space with art galleries and a cafe. Canopy required converting an industrial concrete warehouse into a modern office facility. Parts were removed to create exterior gathering spaces and covered breezeways in order to encourage more creative collaboration. The simple and industrial design draws the focus towards the artists’ work and creativity. MHOA also designed the Offices of Bowie, a sophisticated space located in downtown Austin that uses both industrial and natural materials. Local artists contributed their work to the project including custom light fixtures and an extraordinary sculpture above the seating area. Leather accents and integrated signage highlight even the smallest details of the design.

Page

Architects:
Bob Burke
Arturo Chavez
Mattia J. Flabiano
Michael J. Mace
Thomas McCarthy
Lawrence W. Speck
James M. Wright

Awards:
AIA Austin Design Awards

Address:
400 W Cesar Chavez Street, Suite 500, Austin, TX 78701

About Page

Page is an international presence in the architecture community rooted in Austin. Originally a two-person studio founded in 1898, it eventually evolved into a global company with offices all over the world, including one in Dubai. The firm received several prominent commissions in Austin from the Austin National Bank on Congress to the Littlefield building. The studio also worked on the Austin Convention Center and a six-block district around City Hall. Page has won 30 AIA Austin design awards from 1984 to 2013. Many Page architects teach for the University of Texas, continuing a tradition of engaging in higher education.

Featured Projects

One of Page’s best office designs is their work for Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates (WJE). The interdisciplinary engineering firm’s 13,000 square feet office space explored concrete as the primary building material. High thermal mass concrete walls were designed to reduce energy consumption. Large glass partitions were used in the office space and conference rooms to encourage collaboration. A patio area frames an expansive view of the landscape that surrounds the office. Another Page office design is TechSpace. The co-working, alternative office space has pictures of skylines and abstract city maps, a bike wall, custom whiteboard tables, and personal speakers in every room. The co-working space has locations all over the country and tailors the space to each specific city. TechSpace identified what sets Austin apart—love for the outdoors and art plus a passion for tech and innovation—and incorporated those elements into the design.

Sanders Architecture

Architects:
Christopher L. Sanders

Awards:
AIA Design Award

Address:
3706 Kerbey Lane, Austin, TX 78731

About Sanders Architecture

Principal Christopher L. Sanders founded Sanders Architecture in 2009. He received his Bachelor of Environmental Design and Master of Architecture from Texas A&M University. In addition to being involved in the Austin chapter of AIA, Sanders has also participated in the Texas Society of Architects, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center Advisory Council, and the Waller Creek Conservancy Board of Directors. The firm has been featured in several publications including Luxe, Hospitality & Design, Texas Architect, Austin Monthly, Austin Way, Austin Business Journal, and Modern Luxury Austin. The studio works on residential and commercial architecture and was involved in building both the tallest and smallest buildings in Austin. Sanders has won an AIA Design Award for its design for Juniper, a high-end restaurant located on East Cesar Chavez in Austin.

Featured Projects

Perhaps one of their most noteworthy office projects is the Austin City Limits (ACL) office. Tucked into the underside of the Moody Theatre balcony area, the 6,000 square feet office space provides a workplace for the managers, producers, and editors of ACL and ACL Live. A muted grey and crisp white palette were used for its interiors. A photo collage light fixture is a fun feature installed in the conference room. Sanders also designed the Stratus Corporate Offices, an 8,500-square-feet office complex with both modern and classic design. The design passed the Green Building Standards and includes a flexible office space that accommodates daily conferencing needs and occasional events. Other features include varying ceiling heights and glazing at the eastern and southern sides that allow ample natural light inside the building.

Sixthriver Architects

Address:
1601 S. Mopac Expressway, Barton Skyway Two, Suite 100-D, Austin, TX 78746

About Sixthriver Architects

A small group of design professionals wanting to provide a different kind of design partnership founded Sixthriver in Austin, Texas in 1994. Their team then, as they are now, is comprised of award-winning design specialists who know and understand their city’s culture to its deepest extent. As their city has evolved, so has their firm. From just a few local projects, their project storyboard has grown to include over 25 million square feet of design projects ranging from local commercial office spaces to ground-up multi-use buildings to large-scale student housing projects across the nation. Their firm designs original environments where their clients can conduct business and affect their industry and community. Their creative process is firmly rooted in the idea that great design solves a basic problem in a handcrafted and elegant way. They are committed to the future and the persistent pursuit of new thoughts and ideas and we hold steadfast to their vision and values to take them there.

Featured Projects

The Foundry mixed-use development features 17 residential units, 75,000 sf of office space, and a 300 space, below-grade parking garage. The development features multiple exterior terraces, a planted rooftop courtyard, innovative water quality features, a 5,000 sf shared amenity suite including fitness and yoga studio, bicycle repair facility, conference space, lounge, and hospitality suite. The Foundry is a vehicle for inspiring innovation and creativity. Sixthriver adopted a progressive approach to office design, crafting spaces rich with amenities and opportunities for chance meetings and social interaction. As a result, the project pushes the boundaries of traditional “creative” office space to deliver a new kind of integrated environment where people can live, work, and play. The Foundry’s design is a modern take on the warehouses dotting the east side. Sixthriver incorporated exposed ceiling, concrete, warehouse-style bell-top columns, wood soffits, and brick to create an industrial design.

STG Design

Architects:
Jim Susman

Awards:
Society of American Registered Architects’ Design Honor Award for Adaptive Reuse,
AIA Austin’s Design Award,
Austin Business Journal No. 1 Top Commercial Interior Design Firm

Address:
828 W 6th Street, Suite 300, Austin, TX 78703

About STG Design

Founded in 1976, STG Design is a leading firm with an integrated approach to architecture, interior design, and planning. The firm has branches in Houston and Nashville, as well as an Austin office led by Principal Jim Susman. The staff is committed to successful planning and responsible design, equipped with vast experience in both local and international projects. The studio has received numerous awards, including the 2017 Society of American Registered Architects’ Design Honor Award for Adaptive Reuse, AIA Austin’s 2017 Design Award, and a spot as the No. 4 Top Architecture Firm and the No. 1 Top Commercial Interior Design Firm in the Austin Business Journal’s 2017 rankings. The firm’s work has appeared in several publications such as Architectural Record, Building Design + Construction, and Interior Design Magazine, among others.

Featured Projects

An excellent example of STG’s office design work is the Austin Board of Realtors (ABoR) headquarters. The three-story building is LEED Gold-certified, designed with over three levels of parking to best minimize site impact and maximize site views. The 34,000 square feet building incorporates many sustainable elements such as solar-powered panels and a bio-filtration pond. Some parts of the site have been rehabilitated with native, low-water vegetation. STG also provided the design for the Texas Association of School Boards. The 148,000 square feet building features simple stonework on the exterior design. Orange accents in chairs, desks, and pillars make the reception area a warm and spirited space. The orange and brown-toned bricks on the exterior walls make small appearances in the interior decor, forming a cohesive aesthetic. Plenty of windows were added to give as much natural light as possible.