Atlanta firm wins multiple awards for historically inspired architecture

Tue, 04/08/2008 - 1:31pm
By: The Citizen

Historical Concepts, a multi-discipline architectural firm with offices in Peachtree City and Atlanta, Georgia, was recently recognized for its residential and commercial architecture by the Southeast Chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture and Classical America (ICA&CA). Named for Atlanta architect Philip Trammel Shutze, who is regarded as one of the 20th century’s most devoted classicists, The Shutze Awards recognize excellence in classical and traditional design and craftsmanship.

At a reception held in February at the Academy of Medicine, designed by Shutze, Historical Concepts received Shutze Awards for the design of The Reames Residence and the Palmetto Bluff Post Office.

The Reames Residence, winner of the Large Single Family Residential Category, is a 14,000 square foot Buckhead estate that draws heavily from the Beaux Arts examples of New York and Newport, Rhode Island. Rather than deriving its aesthetic strength solely from elaborate and monumental decoration, this residence draws additional appeal from more subtle and refined classical elements similar to those found in the homes of Northern Italy and Central Europe. This blend of scale, proportion and detailing, created by combining complementary elements of two historical styles, is what makes this residence architecturally distinctive.

Located in Bluffton, South Carolina, the Palmetto Bluff Post Office took home the award for Small Commerical / Civic / Institutional design. The Post Office serves as a mail and multi-purpose facility for the residents of Palmetto Bluff and sits within the community village. The design team studied southern main street districts to evoke the nostalgia of a small town post office. As often seen in early 20th century civic architecture, the Post Office is punctuated with elements of the Italianate style such as a parapet wall and large, decorative bracketry. Vintage, brass post office boxes and a metal-framed skylight provide a sense of historic authenticity to this new structure.

“It’s humbling to be associated with an architect of Shutze’s caliber,” says Todd Strickland, Managing Partner of Historical Concepts, “and we’re particularly thrilled to have won in two separate categories.” Whether the design teams at Historical Concepts are collaborating with a client on a custom home, working with a developer to create commercial buildings or crafting a land plan and vision for a new community, Strickland explains that the common goal is to create value by creating an authentic sense of place. While the firm has won numerous awards for its residential architecture, Strickland says that the Shutze Awards are a highlight for the 25 year old firm. “Being recognized for our residential and commercial work in one evening is particularly satisfying because it demonstrates our firm’s breadth and unique ability to apply traditional ideology to any type of project.”

Historical Concepts’ design philosophy embraces classical scale and proportion, vernacular ideology and historical precedent, and its services include custom residential architecture, light commercial architecture and land planning. With a generalist approach to “place-making”, the firm uses historical towns and cities as inspiration and strives to create new projects that pay homage to existing historical precedent. This award-winning approach results in timeless designs that look and feel as though they have been part of any given setting for generations.

The Shutze Awards are given annually for small, large, and multi-family Residential design and Commercial / Civic / Institutional projects. Additional awards are also given in the areas of Interior design, Craftsmanship, Renovation, and Landscape/Garden Design. The 2008 awards were juried by Clem Labine, publisher of Traditional Building and Period Homes magazines; Milton W. Grenfell, principal of Grenfell Architecture; and Christian Sottile, architect and professor at the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) and were presented by Paul Gunther, President of ICA&CA.

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