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Our Studio
Architecture for communities. Design for people.

Architecture for communities

Design for people

Located in Washington’s historic Georgetown neighborhood, CGS Architects provides architectural design, interior design, master planning, and programming services. Founded in 1981, we have proudly served clients in the DC Metropolitan area and beyond for 40+ years.

We offer a relationship-driven, collaborative approach to the design process and are committed to the principles of design excellence. Our portfolio illustrates our experience creating high quality, sustainable projects that reflect the values, culture, and needs of our clients and the communities they serve.

We believe that architecture has the power to unite diverse communities and shape the environments where we gather, learn, and play. We create beautiful, vibrant spaces where people come together to gather, connect, inspire, and grow.

CGS develops long-term client relationships built on trust and a community-centric approach that creates templates for clear long-range vision. Forged on engaging project stakeholders and tailoring forums that respect their community cultural, we allow input to influence the process using “weigh-in” to facilitate “buy-in.” Our inclusive community engagement process unlocks each program’s social-centric potential, integrating goals and needs as a catalyst for personal connections.

Our projects encompass historic preservation, renovation, adaptive re-use, additions, and new construction. In addition to gaining distinction as designers of public and private K-12 and higher education institutions, we’ve developed a diverse range of institutional projects that include religious, museum, library, recreation, and civic facilities.

Designing in the Heart of Georgetown

Our History

Show me:

 

May 1981

KressCox Associates Founded by Jerrily Kress, David Cox, Robin Vasa and Chris Graae

 

1980's

Focus on Commercial / Multi-family residential Design

 

February 1989

The Manhattan Laundry Building : AIA DC Award of Merit in Architecture

 

1990's

Focus on Institutional Design

 

February 1992

The Washington Ballet : AIA DC Award of Excellence in Architecture

 

July 1993

Georgetown Visitation Founders' Hall Fire - beginning of the firm's focus on Educational Design

 

April 1995

Georgetown Visitation Monastery, National AIA Award of Excellence in Religious Architecture

 

December 1996

Bill Spack Promoted to Principal

 

April 1997

Washington Theological Union and Western Presbyterian Church, National AIA Award of Excellence in Religious Architecture

 

June 1997

Arlington National Cemetery Facilities Maintenance Complex, National Honor Award in Architecture

 

 

May 1999

cox graae + spack architects formed by David Cox, Chris Graae and Bill Spack

 

August 1999

Joanna Schmickel promoted to Principal

 

2000's

Focus on Educational Design : Independent School Work

 

 

June 2003

Tom Wheeler and Don Gregory promoted to Principal

 

May 2006

cox graae + spack architects celebrates 30 years of Award Winning Practice

 

February 2008

Potomac School Upper School Building : AIA DC Award of Excellence in Architecture

 

2010's

Continued Focus on Educational Design : DC Public School Work

 

February 2012

Wilson High School : AIA DC Award of Merit in Historic Architecture

 

June 2014

Chris Ambridge promoted to Principal

 

July 2019

Derek Banocy promoted to Principal

 

 

 

Lindsay Hellender, Julianna von Zumbusch and Lexa Rio promoted to Associate

 

2020's

Continued Focus on Educational Design

 

May 2021

cox graae + spack architects celebrates 40 years of Award Winning Practice

 

September 2021

Duke Ellington School of the Arts featured in Graphisoft's International marketing campaign

 

December 2021

cox graae + spack architects rebrands to CGSARCHITECTS

 

January 2022

Ed Foley Promoted to Principal

 

February 2022

Joanna Schmickel Elevated into AIA College of Fellows

Services

Designing Beautiful Spaces with Purpose

CGS Architects is nationally recognized and locally focused. We have earned a reputation as one of the Washington Metropolitan area’s leading architectural firms with more than 75 local, regional, and national design awards.

We offer the following services:

  • Architectural Design
    • New Construction
    • Adaptive Re-use
    • Historic Preservation
    • Additions
    • Renovations
  • Interior Design
  • Master Planning
  • Programming Services

CGS Architects is a Certified Business Enterprise with the Department of Small and Local Business Development in Washington, DC, qualifying for 10 preference points.

CGS Culture

Collaboration is the foundation of our culture. With each project, we facilitate a highly collegial design process that places our client and their community at its core. We produce innovative solutions that celebrate the culture of each user, embracing the challenge to design spaces with a unique sense of place. With shared purpose we harness our diverse skills for the collective good of our clients, our community, and our society.

We commit to providing a personalized approach at every level of leadership. Our principals act as project leaders by setting the direction at project inception, maintaining active daily participation, and possessing detailed knowledge of the project throughout its design, development, and construction.

We ground our work in our passion for the profession and our commitment to our core values.

Collaborative Culture & Personalized Approach

Our Mission

CGS Architects demonstrates that Architecture has the power to unite diverse communities and shape the environments where we gather, learn, and play. We facilitate a highly collaborative process to produce innovative solutions that celebrate the culture of each user, embracing the challenge to design spaces with a unique sense of place. With shared purpose, we harness our diverse skill sets for the collective good of our clients, our community, and our society.

Our Values

Responsibility
Integrity
Creativity
Commitment
Excellence
Joy

Responsibility

We are reliable and accountable, creating architecture that answers to our community, our society, the environment, and ourselves.

Integrity

We value trust, professionalism, equality, and fairness.

Creativity

We engage in a highly collaborative process to produce innovative design solutions that celebrate the unique culture of each user.

Commitment

We nurture meaningful long-term relationships with our clients, their communities, our consultant teams, and within our firm.

Excellence

We provide outstanding service through strong leadership, creative vision, and active engagement.

Joy

We love what we do!

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2909 M Street NW | Washington DC, 20007 202-965-7070
2909 M Street NW | Washington DC, 20007 | 202-965-7070
©2022 CGS Architects
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