MODERN. GREEN. SUSTAINABLE. ARCHITECTURE.

Press Releases

Press Releases

“Across the architectural profession, Frank Harmon, FAIA, is the face of North Carolina architecture.” – Pearce Brinkley Cease + Lee

Frank Harmon Architect PA Makes National 2014 “Architect 50” Ranking

Monday, November 3, 2014

Based on business success, design quality, and commitment to sustainability.

Frank Harmon Architect PA, a multi-award-winning firm based in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, is included in Architect magazine’s 2014 Top 50 firms in the nation.

Harmon’s firm ranks fifteenth in the professional journal’s sustainability category.

The “Architect 50” places great emphasis on the firm’s commitment to sustainability and design excellence. As the magazine states:

“Qualifying to be ranked is based on scores in three separate categories: business, design, and sustainability. The sustainability and design categories were assigned more points than the business category to reflect Architect’s intent that the list rewards firms that achieve all-around excellence far beyond just profitability.”

Frank Harmon, FAIA, is a leader in modern, sustainable, and regionally appropriate architecture.

A few of his firm’s recent projects, all of which are based on the principles of sustainable design and construction, include: First Presbyterian Church and the AIA NC Center for Architecture and Design in Raleigh; NC Botanical Garden Visitors’ Education Center, North Carolina State Construction’s first LEED Platinum building; a residential mountain retreat in the North Carolina’s Uwharri Mountains; STARworks Center for Creative Enterprise in Star, NC; the United Therapeutics Field House in Research Triangle Park, NC; and the Oyster Research Shellfish Hatchery in Wilmington, NC.

For more information on Frank Harmon Architect PA, visit www.frankharmon.com.

 

The Building Is The Exhibit: Frank Harmon Presents Workshop at Prairie Ridge

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Noted Raleigh, NC, architect Frank Harmon, FAIA, will present a special workshop during the Association of Science-Technology Centers’ (ASTC) Conference in Raleigh October 18-21, hosted by the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences (NCMNS).

Harmon’s workshop, entitled “The Building Is The Exhibit,” will be a preconference, offsite event held at NCMNS’ Prairie Ridge Ecostation in West Raleigh on Friday, October 17, from noon until 4:30 p.m. Harmon’s firm, Frank Harmon Architect PA, designed the Ecostation’s award-winning outdoor classroom and garden pavilion.He explained:

“The most important issue facing society in the 21st century is sustaining the natural environment. Buildings consume 40 percent of all the energy used in America, a greater proportion than all the transportation systems combined. A science center or museum that conserves the environment in a demonstrable way is a vital teaching tool.”

According to the NCMNS website, the Prairie Ridge Ecostation "furthers the Museum's mission of enhancing public understanding and appreciation of the natural environment by providing an outdoor learning space while acting as a model for renewable and sustainable energy.”

Nancy Gottovi of STARworks, an arts and crafts incubation center in Star, NC; Charles Yelton, director of Prairie Ridge; and Lindsey Lambert of the NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, will join Harmon during the workshop. Harmon’s office designed the “green” NC Pottery Center and is currently working on the STARworks project, which involves transforming an old textile mill into a thriving arts center.

“The Building Is The Exhibit” requires preregistration, which will begin on the Raleigh Convention Center’s mezzanine at 7 a.m. October 17.

The annual ASTC Conference allows science center leaders the opportunity “to create and renew connections with colleagues, as well as brainstorm, collaborate, learn, and be inspired by, and with, members of the science center and museum field from around the world,” according to its website. It also lets companies and businesses display their products and services to the largest gathering of museum professionals from across the globe. For more information on ASTC and the 2014 conference, go to http://conference.astc.org/home.

For more information on the Prairie Ridge Eco-Station, visit http://naturalsciences.org/prairie-ridge-ecostation.

For more information on Frank Harmon, visit www.frankharmon.com.

Frank Harmon, FAIA, To Serve On Thomas Jefferson Medalist Jury

Monday, August 25, 2014

Harmon will be the Amerian Institute of Architects' representative on the jury.

Helene Drelling, President of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), has selected Raleigh, NC, architect Frank Harmon, FAIA, to be the AIA’s representation to the University of Virginia and Thomas Jefferson Foundation's 2014-2017 selection committee for the prestigious Thomas Jefferson Medalist in Architecture award.

Since 1966, this medal has been awarded to an outstanding architect, planner, artist, or advocate for design on April 13, Jefferson's birthday, at a ceremony in Charlottesville. The celebrated German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1886-1969) was the very first recipient.

Chaired by the UVa School of Architecture Dean Elizabeth Meyer, the selection committee is comprised of only four other dignitaries. Along with Harmon, the current committee includes: Baltimore architect Gil Schafer as the Thomas Jefferson Foundation’s representative; New York architect Billie Tsien, a previous Medalist; and prominent American architecture critic and author Martin Filler.

“Thomas Jefferson was the only American president who was an architect. It's an honor to be on a jury that celebrates his legacy,” Harmon said. “His design for the University of Virginia is arguably Americas greatest work of architecture. When he designed the university campus in 1825 he wanted it to be modern, with a sense of history, an ideal not out of place today.”

AIA NC Gold Medalist Frank Harmon is founder and principal of the multi-award-winning firm Frank Harmon Architect PA and Professor In Practice at North Carolina State University’s College of Design. His distinguished career and extraordinary accomplishments as an architect have made him a sought-after speaker and jury chair for architectural awards programs nationwide. Most recently, he conducted an architectural seminar at Harvard University.

The selection committee is meeting this month to discuss the 2015 nominees for the medal and to select the final winner.

For more information on the Thomas Jefferson Medalist in Architecture Award, visit
www.arch.virginia.edu/thomas-jefferson-foundation-medal-architecture.

For more information on Frank Harmon, visit www.frankharmon.com.

Raleigh Architect To Address Summer Seminar at Harvard University

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Frank Harmon, FAIA, will discuss “The House: Regionalism in a Global Environment”

Frank Harmon, FAIA, founder and principal of Frank Harmon Architect PA in Raleigh and Professor in Practice with the North Carolina State University College of Design, will be a guest speaker during the Harvard University Graduate School of Design’s 2014 Summer Programs.

Harmon will speak during a two-day seminar entitled “The House: Regionalism in a Global Environment.” to be held in George Gund Hall, 48 Quincy Street, Cambridge, Massachusetts, July 21-22.

The seminar will examine the question of the house and regionalism as determined by a specific place, advances in technology, and larger global influences.

Among the other speakers for this seminar are Peter Bohlin of Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, Pittsburgh and Wilkes-Barre, PA; Dan Rockhill of Rockhill+Associates, Lecompton, KS; and architect/author Witold Rybczynski of Philadelphia, PA.

Frank Harmon is nationally known for modern, innovative, regionally appropriate and sustainable design. When Harmon received the 2013 F. Carter Williams Gold Medal, the highest honor given by the American Institute of Architects North Carolina chapter, AIA NC Executive Director David Crawford described his work as “architecture so deeply rooted to the influence of place that one could hardly imagine it existing elsewhere. It is architecture that capitalizes on the potential of the delicate balance between modernist sensibilities and the pragmatism of the vernacular.”

According to Harvard’s website, learning objectives for the seminar Harmon will address are: to compare historical and contemporary regional forms; to investigate energy saving building types; to compare recent material and technical innovations and timeless solutions; and to identify relevant professional practice techniques. For more information on the seminar: http://execed.gsd.harvard.edu/programs/house-regionalism-global-environment.

For more information on Frank Harmon, visit www.frankharmon.com.

 

Frank Harmon Designs Chimney Swift Roosting Tower at Prairie Ridge

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

To provide a migratory home at the Ecocenter for over 5000 birds

(Raleigh, NC) -- The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences held its groundbreaking ceremony recently for the future Chimney Swift Roost Tower and viewing patio, designed pro bono by Frank Harmon Architects PA, at the Prairie Ridge Ecostation in Raleigh.

The Roost Tower will serve as a restorative home for more than 5000 chimney swifts that sweep into Raleigh in late summer as they migrate south to Latin America. Many of the large chimneys the swifts once roosted in here are gone. Renovation work on aging HVAC systems, especially at schools, has removed chimneys. Prairie Ridge staff estimates that fewer than 20 to 30 large roost chimneys remain in the Raleigh-Cary area.

This Roost Tower also will provide researchers with the opportunity to study the swifts’ roosting habits and the patio will provide a viewing area for the public to enjoy this annual spectacle.

Frank Harmon has been involved in the Prairie Ridge Ecostation since he designed its award-winning Open Air Classroom building in 2005. He explained the delight of designing the Roost Tower:

“One of the most haunting memories I have of North Carolina is a solitary chimney standing alone in a meadow, the relic of a house, a family and a way of life. Of course, the new chimney swift tower we are building will have a modern and functional shape, but its place in the meadow at Prairie Ridge will be reminiscent of the solitary homestead. Godspeed to the chimney swifts!”

The Roost Tower and patio are the result of a collaboration between the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences and the Wake Audubon Society with an Innovation Grant from Toyota TogetherGreen.

Prairie Ridge Ecostation is located at 1671 Gold Star Drive off of Blue Ridge and Reedy Creek roads. For more information, contact Emelia Cowans at 919.707.9837 or via email at emelia.cowans@naturalsciences.org.

For more information on Frank Harmon, visit www.frankharmon.com.

Frank Harmon Joins Indiana Panel To Discuss Early Works of Harry Weese.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Raleigh architect was one of six AIA Fellows invited to the two-day workshop.

Frank Harmon, FAIA, principal of the award-winning firm Frank Harmon Architect PA in Raleigh, was a member of a panel of six Fellows of the American Institute of Architects who gathered in Columbus, Indiana, recently to discuss the early works of the late Chicago architect Harry Weese (1915-1998).

Examples of Harmon’s work were included in an exhibit featuring Weese’s historic works and contemporary projects by all the panelists.

“Harry Weese was a mid-century Modernist architect who said that the great Modern buildings of Chicago had their roots in the vernacular of Illinois farmers’ houses,” said Harmon, whose own work has been highly influenced by lessons he has learned from studying old farmhouses and barns.

The panel discussion was part of a two-day workshop held at the Indiana University Center for Art and Design to explore Weese’s Modernist work in the sixties and seventies. At that time, Weese was arguably Chicago’s preeminent architect and a visionary who helped revive that city’s downtown district and whose projects won worldwide acclaim. Weese also designed the 100-mile Metro system in Washington, D.C.

Organizers held the event in Columbus because that small Midwestern town contains a high concentration of Weese’s early works in close proximity to buildings by his teacher and mentor, Eliel Saarinen, and his son, Eero. Participants visited Weese’s buildings on the first day.

“To be in the presence of his regionally inspired, Modern houses, schools, and churches was a personal inspiration,” Harmon said.

The panel discussion took place on the second day, moderated by Kelly Wilson, director of the Indiana University Center for Art and Design. Ben and Cynthia Weese, Marlon Blackwell, Julie Snow, and Maryann Thompson joined Harmon on the panel.

Frank Harmon is a nationally recognized leader in Modern, sustainable, and regionally appropriate architecture. For more information, visit www.frankharmon.com.

For more information on the Weese workshop, go to www.iu.edu/~weese.

Frank Harmon Presents “Native Places” During The Rural Studio’s 20th Anniversary Celebration

Monday, March 10, 2014

Exploring the architect's belief that drawing and writing are not obsolete skills.

As part of its celebration of the 20th anniversary of the renowned Rural Studio this year, Auburn University invited Raleigh, NC-based architect Frank Harmon, FAIA, to give a lecture.

On March 18, Harmon will join the celebration in Auburn, Alabama, by presenting a lecture entitled “Native Places.” He is on a roster of presenters that includes such architectural luminaries as Glenn Murcutt, Brian MacKay-Lyons, Ton Kundig, and Tod Williams + Billie Tsien.

Frank Harmon is an award-winning architect and the author of “Native Places,” a collection of thoughts and hand-drawn sketches that illustrate the value of looking closely at buildings and places. His presentation in Auburn will explore his belief that drawing and writing are not obsolete skills -- that both disciplines allow architects to develop a natural grace in the way they design projects and engage the world around them.

Harmon’s work, which always begins with simple sketches, has been described as “buildings rooted in the earth, warmed by the sun, with fresh air flowing through the windows and made of materials friendly to the touch.” He is recognized nationally as a leader in modern, sustainable, and regionally appropriate design. As a result, his firm’s work has won numerous design awards and is widely published.

Frank Harmon has admired and followed the Rural Studio’s work since the late architecture professor Samuel Mockbee, along with D.K. Ruth, founded it in 1993.

Mockbee believed architecture must have a strong ethical imperative to be meaningful. He believed architects should become leaders in bringing about environmental and social change. And he called on them “to place less emphasis on pleasing the rich and more on helping those who don’t have access to design services but need them.”

To put their philosophy into practice, Mockbee and Ruth led a group of architecture students to rural West Alabama to give them a hands-on, educational experience, designing and building for an underserved population. For this initiative, Mockbee posthumously received the AIA Gold Medal, the greatest accolade in American architecture.

Twenty years and 150 projects later, Rural Studio continues to educate architects through a mixture of hands-on learning and social activism.

Speaking of Samuel Mockbee’s legacy, Harmon said, “The Rural Studio has shown us how to make $5 out of $2, it has allowed us to discover the genius of place, and it has made architecture relevant.”

For more information on the Rural Studio and the 20th anniversary celebration, go to www.ruralstudio.org/programs/rs20-20th-anniversary.

For more information on Frank Harmon, visit www.frankharmon.com.

CALL FOR ENTRIES: ACTIVATE 14 DESIGN + BUILD COMPETITION

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The first event in AIA NC's inaugural summer series in downtown Raleigh.

Activate 14, a new initiative from the American Institute of Architects’ North Carolina chapter, has released the Call For Entries for its inaugural Design+Build Competition in downtown Raleigh this summer.

Activate 14 is an annual event and design competition series that will launch this summer “to instigate conversations with the public about current architecture and design issues shaping our communities,” according to its website activate14.com.

The Design+Build Competition challenges individuals or a team to design and build an innovative yet temporary structure on the grounds of AIA NC’s Center for Architecture and Design at 14 East Peace Street, Raleigh.

The structure will be a key component of the Activate 14 Summer Series and may function as an outdoor reception area, a place to display art, or as an area to gather for outdoor performances.

“The goal is to build an evocative and compelling design,” said Catherine Hofmann of Frank Harmon Architect PA, the primary sponsor for this year’s Active 14 events.

The winning designer(s) will receive $10,000 with which to build the project.

The competition is open to graduate students in a certified North Carolina architectural program, young professionals with a Bachelors or Masters degree in Architecture, and architects who have been licensed 10 years or less. Project teams may include artists, sculptors, fabricators, builders, etc., provided the project leader falls into one of those categories. However, the entire team must is located in North Carolina.

Activate 14 is an initiative through the AIA NC Program Committee. Erin Sterling Lewis, Ashley Ozburn, and Hofmann comprise the Activate 14 subcommittee. North Carolina Modernist Houses is also sponsoring this summer’s series.

The deadline for submissions is April 25. The winning project will be built by June 13 in time for the first Active 14 event at the Center for Architecture and Design. Other events in the series will be announced soon.

For more information on Active 14 and the Design+Build Competition visit activate14.com. For information on becoming a sponsor, contact Catherine Hofmann at info@activate14.com.

About Activate 14: An AIA NC Summer Series:

Activate 14 is an annual event and design competition series that instigates conversations with the public about current architecture and design issues shaping our communities. A series of multi-component events will activate the building and grounds of the AIANC Center for Architecture and Design (CfAD) located at 14 E Peace Street in Raleigh, North Carolina. This year’s inaugural Activate 14 focuses on design-based solutions for challenges facing cities in North Carolina. Themes include an introduction to architecture and design, sustainable foodways, alternative transportation, and urban housing. Each event of the series will feature educational components, such as food and drink, children’s activities, vendors, art, and architecture. The 2014 series leads up to the annual AIA NC Design Conference. For more information: http://active14.com.

JC Raulston Lath House by Frank Harmon Architect PA Wins 2013 Wood Design Award

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Awards program celebrates achievements in wood architecture and design.

The JC Raulston Arboretum Lath House in Raleigh, designed by Frank Harmon Architect PA, received a Citation Award during the prestigious 2013 Wood Design Awards sponsored by Wood Design & Building magazine in partnership with the Canadian Wood Council.

Designed pro bono and completed in 2010, the open-air Lath House functions as a laboratory for experimental horticultural techniques and methods. Through its screen of carefully placed wooden two-by-twos with steel support, the structure meets the specific light-to-shade ratio needed for infant plants in the spring as they prepare to transition into larger gardens within the arboretum grounds.

Frank Harmon, FAIA, compares the design to “an abstract tree that is spreading its branches to protect the tender plants.”

This marks the fifth award the Lath House has received. In 2011 it won both an American Institute of Architects (AIA) North Carolina chapter Honor Award and an AIA Triangle Merit Award. In 2012 it received an Honor Award from the AIA’s South Atlantic Region. And in 2013 it received an Object Design Award from Inform magazine.

Out of 125 entries, the Wood Design Awards jury selected only 16 projects to honor. The 2013 jurors were Michael Malinowski of Applied Architecture Inc., Michael Heeney of Bing Thom Architects, and Steven Raike of Lake|Flato Architects.

“The Wood Design Awards is an opportunity to showcase excellence in wood architecture and acknowledge a wide-range of wood product applications that demonstrate an understanding of the special qualities of wood such as strength, durability, aesthetic appeal and cost-effectiveness,” said Theresa Rogers, editor, Wood Design & Building magazine.

For more information on the Lath House and Frank Harmon Architect PA, visit www.frankharmon.com.

For more information on the annual Wood Design Awards visit www.cwc.ca.

(Contact information: frank@frankharmon.com; 919.829.9464; 14 East Peace Street, Raleigh, NC 27604.)

Frank Harmon Architect PA Receives Two Sir Walter Raleigh Awards

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

For AIA NC Center For Architecture And Design and First Presbyterian Church, both in downtown Raleigh

Frank Harmon Architect PA, an award-winning firm headquartered in downtown Raleigh, NC, received accolades for two of the firm’s Raleigh projects during the 2013 Sir Walter Raleigh Awards for Community Appearance.


The AIA NC Center for Architecture and Design on Peace Street received an award for Sustainable Design. Projects in this category demonstrate land design, architecture, and building principles that exemplify an integrated approach to resource conservation, and respect the existing features of the site and the surrounding community.


The firm’s renovation/restoration and addition to the 1910 First Presbyterian Church and church campus on the corner of Morgan and Salisbury streets received an award for Historic Preservation. Awards in this category are given for preservation or rehabilitation of existing buildings, especially Raleigh's historic resources.


The Sir Walter Raleigh Awards for Community Appearance recognizing outstanding new contributions to the character, environment and appearance of the City of Raleigh. Since 1983, the Raleigh City Council has presented more than 200 Sir Walter Raleigh Awards to developers, designers, building owners, community groups, civic clubs, churches and citizens.


The awards ceremony was held on October 22 at the Contemporary Art Museum in downtown Raleigh. Project designer Tika Hicks accepted the awards for the firm.


This is the fourth award for the AIA NC Center for Architecture and Design. In 2012 it received an Honor Award from the North Carolina chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA NC). This year the Center received a Judge’s Award from Metal Architecture magazine and the Committee On The Environment (COTE) Award from AIA NC.


The Sir Walter Raleigh Award is the third recognition for First Presbyterian Church. It has received an Honor Award from the Brick Industry Southeast Region and AIA NC’s 2013 Tower Award for adaptive reuse, restoration or rehabilitation of a historic structure; new / infill construction within a historic context; and a new construction addition to a historic structure.


The City of Raleigh Appearance Commission coordinates the Sir Walter Raleigh Awards. For more information, contact the City’s Planning Department at 919-996-4639 or visit the City’s website at www.raleighnc.gov.


For more information on Frank Harmon Architect PA, visit www.frankharmon.com.