SFS Partners Kerry Newman and Marsha Hoffman share SFS Architecture’s approach to creating high impact architecture as part of KMBZ Companies on the Move Series.
Designing for high community impact starts with cooperation between the business and public sectors. As a full service architectural interior design and planning firm focused on civic projects for 43 years, Kansas City based SFS Architecture is involved in projects that benefit the community. “We design buildings and spaces as part of a larger context not just the building itself but how it impacts the neighborhood and community,” Principal Kerry Newman told KMBZ.
From municipal city halls and public safety buildings to community centers, libraries, federal and national parks systems, the firm maintains a sharp focus on design excellence, efficiency, sustainability and high return on investment. SFS Architecture Principal Marsha Hoffman points to a major renovation project currently under construction at the Johnson County Arts and Heritage Center. It is slated to open in the Spring of 2017 and will include an indoor theater to use during winter months, a season conspicuously absent of performances. Another major component of the project is a new home for Johnson County Museum in Shawnee, Kansas.
Newman discusses the 9/11 Memorial at the Overland Park Fire Training Center, underscoring that it was a very important project for SFS Architecture. “We felt a great sense of responsibility to develop and design a great memorial,” he said. It continues to be very rewarding for the firm as every year a ceremony is held on 9/11.
One of the keys to the success of the 9/11 Memorial and other civic projects like it, is that the firm comes to the planning table with an extremely inclusive design process. Where there are multiple stakeholders involved, it is crucial to effectively incorporate multiple perspectives and goals into a cohesive vision. SFS Architecture has developed methodologies and tools for helping work through that process and reaching consensus.