Bowie Gridley Architects

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Bowie Gridley Architects specialises in work for institutions of community significance—schools, performing arts venues, libraries, athletic facilities, museums, and more. BGA builds for life.

Bowie Gridley Architects (BGA) was founded in 1981 by Calvert S. Bowie, AIA, and William C. Gridley, FAIA. Since its earliest days, BGA has focused primarily on the design and crafting of outstanding architecture for educational institutions. The firm’s history closely parallels the growth of many schools, both public and private, mostly in the mid-Atlantic region, but the firm has worked throughout the nation. Still in its infancy, the firm gained recognition and acclaim for its design of a School Activities Center in Rockville, Maryland, featured prominently as Architecture Magazine’s cover story. A growing reputation for innovative design produced other equally challenging opportunities for varied projects among a host of educational and civic institutions looking for economy, style and charm as well as a spirit of collaboration from its architects. Look back over the past 30 years and you’ll find broad stylistic range that is indicative of Bowie Gridley’s diverse clientele. From inception, we have sought to build an in-depth understanding of the context of a project—the place, the people, the provenance, and the purpose—to create structures that are new, yet fit within the larger community. We call this “Innovation in Context.” To us, each project is a reflection of the community it serves. Likewise, by focusing on community, we have formed an abiding commitment to the principles of sustainability. This commitment is born from a belief that, as designers of new structures on planet Earth, we are entrusted with a responsibility to the communities we serve, and to ourselves, to make the best possible use of the resources we are given. The resulting work, seen in places of community significance across the nation, unites form, texture, and light into inspiring approaches to place-making. We call our philosophy “Innovation in Context”—a belief that our best work is that which finds new methods, new materials, and new ideas and weaves those elements into the context of a specific community. “Innovation in Context” means that Bowie Gridley stretches boundaries, but we don’t break them. From client to client the context may vary—it may be geographic, stylistic, cultural or historical—but time and again we produce designs that are at one with their surroundings and reflect the unique communities they serve. For our clients, “Innovation in Context” means participating in a collaborative architectural design process that produces structures that satisfy significant functional and aesthetic requirements simultaneously.



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