We are pleased to announce Robert L. Holzbach, AIA, LEED AP, our Principal and Director of Staff Operations, has begun his term as the 2020 President of the Washington Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA|DC).
joined the AIA|DC Board of Directors in 2015 as an At-Large Member, Rob went on
to serve as Secretary, Treasurer, and President-Elect before stepping into his
current role as President. During his tenure, Rob pioneered the creation of
the DAC Leadership Series, a program designed to provide continuing
education and leadership development for mid-career professionals, with panel
topics in 2019 including Unconscious Bias, Artificial Intelligence, Leadership
for the Next Generation, and Alternative Career Paths.
With over two decades of experience in the architecture and interior design profession, Rob brings his leadership skills and industry knowledge to the AIA|DC. He is particularly interested in forging connections with like-minded organizations focused on Climate Action. This effort brings the AIA|DC into alignment with the AIA National’s “Big Move Toward Environmental Stewardship”, which seeks to declare an urgent climate imperative for carbon reduction, transform the day-to-day practice of architecture, and take immediate action. He is also invested in issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion and has reshaped the Board of Directors to accurately reflect the chapter’s diverse membership.
As a Principal at Hickok Cole, Rob is a Project Director for commercial office building projects, and as Director of Staff Operations, he is responsible for firm wide recruiting, retention, and staffing management. His most notable projects include the NPR headquarters, 909 Rose Avenue at Pike & Rose, Franklin Square at 1300 Eye Street (reposition), and the Incubator Office building at Potomac Yards.
am thrilled to step into the role of President after many years of being a part
of the AIA|DC Chapter. Throughout my membership, I have witnessed first-hand
the value this remarkable organization provides, not only to the profession but
to the city as a whole,” said Rob. “I look forward to working with my
fellow Board Members to build upon the achievements of my predecessors and
honor the role of the AIA within the architecture community.”
On January 8, 2020, Hickok Cole, the Menkiti Group, and Enlightened Inc. were joined by Mayor Muriel Bowser and city officials to celebrate the official groundbreaking of the MLK Gateway. Located at the corner of Good Hope Road and Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE, this development intends to revitalize the Anacostia neighborhood and serve as a catalyst for economic opportunity. Upon completion, the project will deliver an estimated 400 jobs to the local community.
Our team has worked closely with the Menkiti Group to design a sustainable and equitable space that matches their vision for economic development while addressing the needs and concerns of the Anacostia community. Beginning Q1 2021 upon construction completion, Phase One will feature the restoration of 14,000 SF of ground floor retail and 20,000 SF of newly built office space, and include facade preservation in an effort to maintain continuity of the historic neighborhood. Phase Two design will tentatively start later this year with the goal to start construction soon after the completion of Phase One.
Several companies are already on board to lease the new space, including Enlightened Inc, who has agreed to relocate its headquarters from downtown DC. The tech company will not only increase traffic to the area, but increase career growth with a new incubator program designed to help small tech firms conduct business with the federal government, in addition to offering cybersecurity training geared towards providing local residents with new skill sets.
We are thrilled to be a part of this pivotal development in the heart of Anacostia and look forward to the monumental opportunities it will bring to the community.
2019 was a great year for our staff, our projects and our firm. We put our research into action, saw many of our designs finally realized in construction, and even brought home a few awards. None of it though, would be possible without our partners and our clients. We thank you for sharing our vision and for embracing opportunities focused on building a successful future for our city and the people within it. Now for a rundown of our top moments of the year:
1. In 2019, we welcomed 10 new members to the Hickok Cole team – including a designer who started as an intern this spring!
2. We promoted 13 team members to positions varying from Associate to Principal, and celebrated five staff members who reached significant firm milestones within the firm.
4. We continued our support of net zero and high-performance development through participation in the DMV Net Zero Energy Coalition and ULI Sustainability Committee while strengthening our relationship with the DOEE by helping to inform the real estate industry about goals established by DC’s new Omnibus Act.
5. Our Lifestyle team celebrated the grand opening of The Batley, a warehouse turned residence setting the new standard for modern luxury in DC. Inspired by the history of the Union Market neighborhood, the design features a variety of custom furnishings, finishes and works of art throughout the building’s public and amenity spaces.
6. We transformed our research on modular and mass timber construction into reality with new projects at Benning Road and 80 M SE in DC respectively. Upon completion, 80 M will become the first ever mass timber construction on a commercial office building in DC.
7. DC Mayor Muriel Bowser signed the most ambitious clean energy law in the nation at our American Geophysical Union headquarters project, the first net-zero energy office renovation in the Mid-Atlantic region. The project went on to receive the DC Department of Energy and the Environment’s first ever Clean Energy DC Award.
8. We won and began work on our first project in Philadelphia, a modular multi-family development in historic Fishtown, expanding our geographic reach to include the City of Brotherly Love.
9. Nearly five decades following the fire that burned it down, we helped restore the beloved St. Thomas Parish to the Dupont Circle community – completing a mixed-use renovation and modern interpretation of the church with an adjacent multi-family addition that makes use of the surviving 1970s facade.
10. Hickok Cole’s Richmond office broke ground on their first base building project, The Current, a mixed-use development with Lynx Ventures.
11. We delivered the first phase of our work to modernize National Geographic’s headquarters campus with a new office environment that properly reflects their mission-driven culture, and began work on the next phase of design for the organization’s new entry pavilion.
12. We hosted our first annual Wellness Month (which originated as Wellness Week in 2018) and brought meditation, mindfulness, health and wellness to the workplace thanks to our partners at Steelcase, Bently, Coalesse, Designtex, reDistrict, ALKS, MOI, and many more.
13. Hickok Cole Creative continued to expand upon their portfolio of strategic branding packages for multifamily and commercial buildings across the DMV, while embarking on efforts for new clients in the arts and culture world – including artist residency program, the Nicholson Project and the DC Concert Orchestra Society.
14. The hard work and dedication of our team members was recognized with more than thirty industry awards, including honors from IIDA Premiere MAC, MultiHousing News, AIA Northern Virginia, Retrofit Magazine, Multi Family Executive, and ENR.
15. We strutted the catwalk at Cosmo Couture with our partners Good Lines DC and Buzzi Space in a visionary portrayal of Memory that paid homage to the Kodak Carousel.
16. Our staff shared their expertise at industry events like Design DC, ULI’s Resilience Day, Bisnow’s Greater State of Senior Housing and ARchitecture & Design Summits, and the PHIUS Passive House Conference. We were also invited to serve and began work as co-chair for the upcoming Facades+ DC conference.
18. Our Full Circle Committee organized over 300 staff hours dedicated to volunteer efforts from helping at soup kitchens and running marathons to donating pro-bono design work for Arts on the Block’s new Silver Spring studio.
19. Finally, we raised nearly $150,000 – a new record – in partnership with Washington Project for the Arts at our annual Art Night event which featured a custom pop-art themed signage, invitations, and swag designed by Hickok Cole Creative.
Looking forward to a bright 2020 – we’ll see you then!