The Mansfield Art Center, located in Mansfield, Ohio, is an important fixture in the community. It operates under the mission to “enrich the lives of all children, families, and adults through the arts with gallery exhibitions, art education, artist workshops and related activities.” The Mansfield Art Center realized a need for an addition to accommodate an expanding demand for the arts and cultural development of the area.
Perspectus Architecture is serving as the design architect for the project. Director of Design David Thompson worked with local Mansfield architecture firm, The Seckle Group, to design a new education wing addition to the Mansfield Art Center. The new space expands the art center’s ability to offer more hands-on classes to the community, including a specialized “hot zone” with a ceramics and glass blowing studio.
The new addition seeks to respect
and enhance the existing gallery and education structure designed by the late Don
M. Hisaka, built in 1970. A resident of Cleveland, Ohio for a portion of his
career, Hisaka’s contemporary work earned over 50 awards of merit. The
Mansfield Art Center was honored with the Progressive Architecture National
Citation in 1971.
The simple, rectilinear forms from the existing building extend to the new structures. The two new forms flanking the existing building defer to the existing structure and visually frame the existing gallery space. The siting of the new additions preserves the original entry sequence and enhances the exterior pavilion space to accommodate more diverse functions. The new structures take cues from the existing building’s massing, openness, exposed structure, and utilization of daylight. By maintaining and bounding the existing green space, the additions preserve views from the gallery spaces.
Gray porcelain cladding contrasts
the white paint of the existing structure while also abstractly referencing the
ceramics studio within the new structure.
The new ceramic and glass arts studio serves as an expansion of the existing education studios, extending the existing circulation axis and re-imagining how the spaces can be flexible and adaptable.
Originally proposed as an ‘open
warehouse’ space, the studio construction details are intended to be a
reinterpretation of the existing gallery and education construction. The new classroom
space is subdivided by mobile modular storage units that facilitate easy
reconfiguration, promoting an adaptable, scalable learning environment. Storage
space in a new lower level helps consolidate storage currently spread
throughout the existing building, freeing up congested areas for their original
While the primary windows for the
studio space capitalize on northern light, the south elevation incorporates
louvers and deep recesses to diffuse and control direct sunlight entering the
Adjacent to kilns and ovens, floor-to-ceiling glass seeks to put the process of making art on display. Perimeter wall space is maintained within the studios to allow for adequate on-hand storage of supplies.
Construction is anticipated to
begin in June 2019.
Perspectus Architecture is excited to welcome a new co-op student to our team as we kick off 2019.
Olivia Zepp joins us as a co-op student from Ball State
University (Muncie, Indiana) where she is currently pursuing her Master of
Architecture with a Certificate in Historic Preservation. She recently
completed her bachelor’s degree from the University of Cincinnati’s School of
Design, Architecture, Art and Planning. We asked Olivia five questions to help
everyone get to know her.
You’ll be earning your Master of Architecture with a Historic Preservation Certificate. What drives your passion for historic preservation?
The driving factor for my passion in preservation is what we can learn
from historic buildings. The construction techniques and methods used in
historic buildings are unique and the fact that these buildings can stand the
testament of time with little human intervention I think is fascinating. We can
learn what was most important in societies when we see what parts of buildings
had the greatest emphasis in the designs.
You were one of four students at Ball State chosen to
travel to Milan, Italy this past fall to participate in a workshop focused on
how historic buildings can meet 21st century needs. What was that experience
like and what was your biggest takeaway?
The experience was unforgettable along with being able to work with
students from three different universities around the world, we were able to
see many historic buildings from time periods not seen in the U.S. The biggest
takeaway was, even though all the students were from different places our ideas
of preservation and history being able to tell a story were all the same.
Language barriers didn’t influence our perception of the importance of keeping
all our pasts alive through the built environment.
What do you hope to do after graduation?
After graduation I want to get my architecture license and possibly own
my own firm in the future. I would also like to start a family and live in a
place with beautiful buildings.
Where do you find inspiration?
I find my inspiration from my family a lot of the time. My grandmothers
especially have shown me that it’s never too late to start a new passion in
Is there something not many people know about you?
I was a Girl Scout from first grade up until senior year of high school.
This led to me earning my Girl Scout Gold Award (equivalent to the Eagle Scout
Award) my senior year.
Principal Elizabeth Corbin Murphy of our historic studio is happy to have Olivia on the team saying, “I’m very impressed with Olivia. She has proven herself to be very adept and a quick learner.”
Keep up the good work, Olivia! We’re glad to have you!
February 2019 – Perspectus Architecture is proud to announce that Project Manager Adam Yaracs, AIA, LEED AP, NCARB has been selected by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) as a recipient of the 2019 Young Architects Award. This prestigious award honors individuals nationwide who have demonstrated exceptional leadership and made significant contributions to the architecture profession early in their careers and within the first 10 years of achieving licensure. Adam will be presented with the Young Architect award on June 6th at the 2019 AIA National Conference on Architecture in Las Vegas and will be featured in February’s issue of Architect Magazine.
“To be selected as a recipient of the AIA National Young Architect Award is an overwhelming honor. Being recognized by the College of Fellows and by your peers as a leader and as someone who has made significant contributions to the profession is humbling,” says Adam.
He continues, “To me, receiving this award reinforces the importance of becoming a multifaceted professional and stresses the value of giving back to the profession. Using the many individuals who have mentored me through the early stages of my career as an example, this award exemplifies my commitment to continue to practice thoughtful, sustainable architecture, lead by example and mentor young professionals and the next generation of leaders.”
Nominated by the AIA Cleveland Chapter, this honor speaks highly of Adam’s continued commitment to the profession and his initiative as a leader within the design community. These qualities are demonstrated through Adam’s involvement in the AIA Cleveland Chapter, as an educator at Kent State University, a mentor to architecture students and young professionals, and within our own team at Perspectus designing outstanding work for our clients.
is exciting news. I couldn’t be prouder of the accomplishments Adam has
achieved,” says Managing Principal and Perspectus Architecture founder Bill
Ayars, AIA, ACHA. “This is a well-earned honor and I’m extremely proud of his
career has advanced at a rapid pace since his start as an intern architect. He humbly
admits that his experiences working at several respected national and local design
firms have greatly influenced his career trajectory. At each of these firms, his
creativity, high design intelligence and keen ability to understand the client have
made him a highly valued team member. Adam has played a key role on many AIA
design award-winning projects including a university social sciences center, a
performing arts center and music education building, and most recently, the Gleneagles
Golf clubhouse and community center in Twinsburg, Ohio to name a few.
Gleneagles Golf clubhouse and community center earned the People’s Choice Award
in the architecture category at the 2018 AIA Cleveland Design Awards.
Motivated by designing community spaces
spaces that build community is the overarching design philosophy that Adam strives
to apply in all his work, regardless of project type. A community can be
identified by its people, and the buildings that they work, live, and play in.
Responsible architecture that provokes the importance of the human experience
will promote a community’s identity and health.
Adam, thoughtful design that strengthens the community and enhances the quality
of life is the responsibility of all architects – and everyone is worthy of it.
“My goal is to introduce and practice good design principles to each project, independent of who the client is, the project type, or the budget.”
Building community through
to shape his success are the handful of mentors Adam feels fortunate to have in
his life and professional career. Those mentors include: Steve Kordalski, AIA,
Jack Bialosky Jr., FAIA, Robert Maschke, FAIA, Aaron Hill, AIA, Tim Hawk, FAIA,
Jodi van der Wiel, AIA, Larry Fischer, AIA, Bill Ayars, AIA, Dave Robar, AIA,
Allan Renzi, AIA, and Charles Belson, AIA.
have always been surrounded by strong team members and mentors who have played
an enormous role in supporting me and offering career advice,” he says.
credits his mentors who encouraged him to get involved with the local design
community at an early stage of his career and to pursue his desire to teach.
of the positive and fruitful relationships he has had with his own mentors, he
now chooses to share his knowledge and experiences by educating and mentoring
young students at his alma mater, the Kent State University College of
Architecture and Environmental Design. He emphasizes that the choice
to become a mentor is the one of the most important decisions a design
professional can make in his or her career.
mentors have supported me through milestones such as graduate school, achieving
my architectural license, leading the local design community as AIA Cleveland
President, and pursuing career opportunities,” he recalls.
“To be able to navigate these challenges and to find some level of success in your own career, encourages and motivates you to help those who are just beginning to pursue their own journey to become a design professional. Teaching at Kent State University has provided me with a platform to do just that,” where he teaches a First Year Foundations design studio, a Professional Practice Portfolio workshop, participates in the scholarship review committee, and leads as the faculty advisor to the American Institute of Architects Students (AIAS) Kent State Chapter.
A leader in the design community
Adam is heavily involved as a leader in the design community through his involvement with AIA. In 2017, at just 34-years-old, Adam served as the AIA Cleveland Chapter President. As President, he led key communication initiatives like the implementation and expansion of a weekly e-newsletter, increasing the chapter’s social media presence, adding a storefront projection system to the chapter office, and creating a new chapter website.
his term, the chapter experienced record growth in chapter development and
membership. He worked with board members to establish the annual AIA Cleveland
Kent State University Scholarship Fund and worked with the University to
increase student participation and inclusion within the chapter. In addition,
Adam chairs the annual Design Cruise Line networking event and the Cleveland
Design Awards where he has continued work to grow the awards program to include
over 500 attendees.
his leadership for AIA Cleveland after his presidency, Adam was elected in 2017
to a two-year term as the Director of Communications.
of this unrelenting dedication and service to the architecture community, he has
been recognized by AIA Cleveland with several individual awards. Adam was
honored with his first Presidential Citation in 2011, the Chapter Activism
Award in 2013, and was just honored with a second Presidential Citation at the
2018 AIA Cleveland Design Awards.
2019 AIA National Young Architects Award is only the latest addition to his
growing collection of achievements.
If the last 10
years are any indication, Adam shows no signs of slowing down. We at Perspectus
Architecture are so proud to see Adam recognized with the AIA Young Architects
Award and to have him on our team.
Congratulations, Adam! We can’t wait to see what you do next.
Perspectus Architecture is proud to share that project architect Adam Yaracs, AIA, LEED AP, NCARB was honored with the AIA Cleveland Presidential Citation at this year’s Design Awards. 2018 AIA Cleveland President Allan Renzi, AIA recognized Adam’s outstanding service to the AIA, as well as his dedication and commitment to the success of AIA Cleveland as a Chapter President, Communications Director, Kent State AIAS Chapter Advisor and Chair of AIA Cleveland Design Awards.
The Presidential Citation is awarded to an individual who goes above and beyond to bring awareness to the chapter and further emphasize the importance of giving back to the architectural profession. The Presidential Citation is granted each year at the discretion of the acting Chapter President.
Congratulations, Adam on your achievement!
About the AIA Cleveland Design Awards: Each year, AIA Cleveland recognizes excellence in design by inviting local firms to submit their best work to be reviewed by nationally renowned juries from all over the country. on Friday, November 2nd, 500 members from the local design community gathered at the Westin Cleveland Downtown to celebrate this year’s award winners. This year’s Jury Chair and Keynote speaker was Matthew Kreilich, FAIA from Snow Kreilich Architects. Snow Kreilich Architects was the recipient of this year’s AIA National Architecture Firm Award. More information about AIA Cleveland can be found at: https://www.aiacleveland.com/
December 2018 – We are proud to announce that Perspectus Architecture is an award recipient of the 2018 Weatherhead 100 awards! This is the eighth time we have been honored as a Weatherhead 100 company; previous years include 2008-2010, 2012-2013, 2016 and 2017. Established more than 30 years ago and administered by the Case Western Reserve University Weatherhead School of Management, The Weatherhead 100 awards is an annual celebration of the fastest growing companies in Northeast Ohio based on sales growth in the past five years.
The award ceremony was held on Thursday, November 29, 2018at the Hilton Cleveland Downtown. Click here to read the full list of 2018 Weatherhead 100 companies.
November 2018 – Perspectus Architecture Principal Elizabeth
Corbin Murphy, FAIA has been appointed as one of two Ohio Valley Regional
Representatives to the AIA College
of Fellows for 2019.
As Regional Representative, Murphy will serve as a liaison
between the AIA Fellows within the Ohio Valley region and the AIA College of
Fellows. This esteemed role encompasses four objectives: Generate awareness;
Encourage participation among existing Fellows; Inspire professional growth
among recently licensed Architects through fellowship within the Institute; and
Influence AIA components (disseminate messaging and information about the
Perspectus Architecture is proud to welcome our newest team member, Gwendolyn Frank! She recently graduated from Kent State University with a Master of Architecture. She joins us as an intern architect and hopes to one day be a proud pet-parent for the world’s largest (perhaps cutest?) rodent, the capybara.
We thought we would introduce her with a short Q&A to help everyone get to know her.
Where are you from originally?
I grew up in Westerville, Ohio, but have lived around different parts of Ohio.
What’s your favorite thing to do outside of work?
Exploring a new place or having a new experience is something I value greatly.
Who or what inspires you most?
Family has always been a large source of my inspiration.
What are you most excited about as you begin your career?
I am most excited to continue learning, and specifically learning in a professional setting. School and the profession offer quite different learning opportunities.
If I weren’t an architect I would be….
I never had a backup option, but I suppose it would have something to do with art and history.
What’s the coolest place you’ve ever been? Where do you want to travel to most and why?
I was fortunate to travel to Italy during school, and my most memorable moment was sitting overlooking the city from the Florence Opera. I could see my next big adventure being Barcelona to see Sagrada Familia.
Favorite TV show/movie?
Movies, I enjoy old Hollywood films and for TV I am happy when a new season of Project Runway starts.
Is there something not many people know about you?
I have an affinity for unique animals and really would love to have a capybara someday.
The age-old Cleveland question: East Side or West Side?
I live on the East Side but more often on the West Side in my spare time.
Cavs or Indians?
Indians for sure!
Dogs or Cats?
Dogs. I grew up fostering puppies for the humane society and hope to have a chance to sometime in the future.
Welcome to the team, Gwendolyn! We’re so glad to have you here!
Perspectus Architecture has been working with Belmont College in St. Clairsville, Ohio since 2012. Belmont College is a two-year public community college offering residents in the Ohio Valley a variety of academic and technical training degrees.
Our most recent project with the college created a place where their students could gather and study together and established a new identity for the college. Such spaces on college campuses are often referred to as student unions or student centers. What do these campus hubs need to create a student-centered experience in the 21st century?
Today, college student unions play a pivotal role in student recruitment and retention. Often where campus tours begin and end, these buildings establish an institution’s brand and communicate the institution’s values and culture to prospective students.
Student unions must fill a variety of needs to help prepare students for the professional environment and reflect the many ways students learn and collaborate. Amenities available within these buildings, such as community spaces, various dining options, and digital resources, have evolved and student expectations of these amenities have continued to escalate.
Well-designed student spaces combine open collaboration spaces, where socialization and group work can occur, with smaller, quiet spaces and intimate study nooks.
It is important that student unions connect the student body to the rest of campus, acting as a one-stop for academic and institution services, student activities, entertainment and learning.
As the professional world increasingly functions at the crossroads of technology and human interaction, students today need a place where they can connect socially and have access to resources for academic and career success. For the incoming generations of students, an institution’s student union symbolizes how it will prepare them for career survival.
Belmont College’s student center is located within their Main Building, with original construction starting in 1971. The last major change the building underwent was in 1996 with the addition of a new wing. Since then, the Main Building has seen very little change, slow to adapt to meet changing needs. As a commuter school, Belmont College wanted to provide better opportunities for students to stay on campus after and between classes. The college also sought to establish a new identity to help attract and retain the best students in the region. In doing so, the college decided to bring their approximately 100,000-square-foot Main Building into the 21st century with a clear focus on the student. To accomplish this task, Perspectus Architecture led Belmont College though a re-design that supports the college’s current and future needs.
This transformation of the Main Building encompassed extensive interior, exterior, and infrastructure renovations. Students who enter the building now experience a new campus shop, library, classroom finishes, plus a complete reconfiguration of staff office space into the aptly-named “One Stop.” The creation of student collaboration spaces such as a new lounge, reading room, and gaming area entice students to hang out longer on campus. The gaming area is one of the more unique added amenities; here, students can plug in their own gaming systems to screens, allowing them to work together recreationally.
New wayfinding and the incorporation of bright colors and environmental graphics energize the building, reinforcing the College’s brand and commitment to the success of its student body.
We are proud to share that the American College of Healthcare Architects (ACHA) has announced that Perspectus Architecture Principals Peter Bohan, AIA, LEED® AP; Mike Lipowski, AIA, LEED® AP, NCARB, CDT; and Sal Rini, AIA have earned their Board Certificate in healthcare architecture. Bohan, Lipowski and Rini recently passed an accredited examination, which assesses the knowledge and understanding of architects who practice as healthcare specialists. They join the ranks of over 400 ACHA colleagues in the US and Canada who have received this important architectural credential.
ACHA requires its certificate holders to work towards the improvement of healthcare architecture on behalf of the public, to practice in an ethical manner and to maintain the highest standards in the specialized field of healthcare architecture.
Perspectus Architecture has a long-standing history serving University Hospitals on a variety of projects for the health system’s inpatient and outpatient facilities. Recently, University Hospitals selected the Perspectus Architecture team to serve as Architect of Record and design a new Health Center located on Lorain Road in North Ridgeville, Ohio. The 50,300 square-foot LEED Certified facility opened in June of 2018.
A major part of the new health center’s design process involved assisting University Hospitals in defining and maintaining consistency with its brand for community hospitals and health centers. The design team focused on developing a design that is distinctly of University Hospitals.
Documenting existing design consistencies
Our architectural team field-documented existing facilities in four locations (Chagrin-Highlands Health Center, Concord Health Center, Twinsburg Health Center and Broadview Heights Health Center), creating a comprehensive case study of consistencies that reinforce an underlying architectural brand to use for the North Ridgeville facility and as a resource for future University Hospitals projects.
Upon completion of the field work, the design team consisting of Perspectus Architecture and CBLH Design collaborated during a benchmarking charrette at the Perspectus office to evaluate four major areas of the respective buildings: the site, the building, major interior spaces, and materials.
These design elements were then sorted into four categories: Go, Keep, Change and Add. This exercise helped identify the key elements that make up the University Hospitals brand and inform the visual language of the North Ridgeville facility. Successful design elements critical to the University Hospitals brand include signage, brick color, glass color, metal panels, curvature and geometric features.
Visibility and signage
The Health Center is strategically located off Lorain Road, Interstate 480, and Interstate 80. Because of these direct views, visibility of the building’s signage from major roadways was evaluated as a critical design element.
Functioning like the facility’s own billboard, large planes on the roof of the building were intentionally designed as the backdrop for University Hospitals signage placed on three sides of the building. This creates clear wayfinding to the Emergency Department for patients and visitors arriving from the north.
The health center is purposely placed on the 33-acre property to avoid disturbing the surrounding wetlands. The building’s location allows for scenic nature views of the adjacent pond for staff and patients, while also providing the opportunity for future expansion.
Location and wayfinding
A heliport and a covered ambulance drop-off area accommodate patients requiring critical care. To locate the heliport, Perspectus worked with the helicopter pilot at an early design stage with an actual onsite visit and reviewed approach options making sure that helicopters could take off and land safely.
Adjacent to the Emergency Department is the two-story main lobby that is flooded with natural daylight and serves as the transportation hub for visitors moving throughout the building.
The new health center includes an Emergency Department, Radiology Department, Laboratory, Retail Pharmacy, Digestive Health Department and Medical Offices including Primary Care, Specialty Care, OB/GYN and Pediatrics. Tactical placement of each department not only supports efficient work flow, but also provides patients and visitors a clear understanding of where they are in the building and how to move from one department to the next.
Achieving a unified design
Upon completion, Senior Construction Mgmt. Manager at University Hospitals, Debra DeCapite said, “We had a lot of challenges that were resolved which resulted in a truly beautiful design of this health center.”
Collaboration – both with the design team and the Client – was a key factor in achieving North Ridgeville Health Center’s unique image. The building’s design promotes University Hospitals brand consistency and establishes a source of community pride.