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21 December 2018

HOK 2018 Year in Review

The year saw the opening of significant HOK projects around the globe, multiple new design commissions and our people making news for contributions within the profession.     

That went fast. Hard to believe 2018 is nearing its end. Hard, too, to believe so much happened in such little time. At HOK, 2018 was very much a year of firsts: from new projects and technologies to new research and ideas that will impact not only the future of our firm but also the AEC industry. The following are 2018’s highlights based on social media and views to hok.com.

Technology + Research


We began the year with the unveiling of HOK STREAM, a proprietary tool that allows our integrated architectural and engineering teams to dramatically accelerate innovation to create designs once considered unachievable. HOK STREAM has already been used to model and analyze the design of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport’s signature new curbside canopies and the one-of-a-kind halo video structure at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. We’re now using HOK STREAM to inform and push our design on multiple projects and, equally importantly, to find design and construction savings for our clients.

In other firsts, 2018 saw the debut of HOK’s VR app that allows clients to experience their design projects in an immersive, 360-degree setting from the convenience of their smartphones. In May, HOK made industry news with the hiring of Dr. Andrew Ibrahim as the chief medical officer of our Healthcare practice. A practicing surgeon with a background in design, Ibrahim is helping our designers create hospitals and medical spaces that accelerate healing. Ibrahim is, to our knowledge, the first doctor to join a design firm as a CMO.

HOK’s thought leadership also made headlines. Facade specialist John Neary’s Circadian Curtain Wall concept (above) was named a finalist in Metals in Construction’s 2018 Design Challenge. The facade concept draws on biophilic design to offer building occupants abundant natural light while minimizing solar heat gain. In July we broke new ground with the publication a glossy compendium of our expertise and insight in corporate interiors. HOK Forward: Workplace Research + Trends 2018 explores how we design workspaces to promote health and wellness, boost engagement, accommodate new generations of employees and more.

In December HOK teamed with the New York Building Congress to publish Building the Future of New York: Transit and Land Use. The report explores current challenges facing New York City’s housing supply and mass transit system and proposes changes to accommodate future populations that will crest 10 million by 2050. HOK President Carl Galioto, a coauthor of the Building the Future of New York report, showed he’s as deft with a writer’s quill as he is a drafting pencil in Op-Eds that appeared in Crain’s New York and Architecture Today, the latter of which sparked online debate about the promise and shortcomings of AEC technology.

Project Openings + New Wins

HOK saw numerous designs come to fruition in 2018. In January the opening of Consumers Credit Union’s headquarters drew eyeballs for its contemporary, light-filled design set within a forested site in southwestern Michigan. In April global electronics leader LG opened its dazzling, 20-building LG Science Park (above) that immediately became one of the world’s largest corporate research campuses. The opening of the NewYork-Presbyterian David H. Koch Center, also in April, brought cutting-edge technology and patient care to Manhattan.

In May the Atlantis Sanya Resort debuted as one of the hottest luxury vacation destinations in all of China. In October the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks unveiled a dramatic transformation of State Farm Arena that brings multiple new innovations to the fan experience. In November Wallpaper magazine devoted significant bandwidth to its online feature on Central + Wolfe (top image), a next-generation Silicon Valley corporate campus that takes biophilic design to a “new level,” according to the magazine. In December one of our most closely watched projects, LaGuardia Airport’s new Terminal B, opened its first gates to positive reviews.

In 2019 we look forward to working on several big project wins announced this year, including a new transit hub at Toronto Pearson International Airport, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s new Mercy Vision and Rehabilitation Hospital, a Research Hub at the University of Glasgow and an exciting new arena for the Valencia Basket Club (above) in southeastern Spain.

People + Culture

HOK would be nothing without our many talented people, and we were proud to feature so many of our inspiring colleagues on hok.com in 2018. In recognition of International Women’s Day last March, we profiled 21 women leaders across our global practice in an article that got strong engagement across our social channels. Readers also enjoyed a Q&A with William Jenkinson, who shared his knowledge and perspective on the evolution of airport design over the past three decades, and Ralph Raymond’s inspiring story of arriving in the U.S. from Haiti as a child and pursuing his dream to become an architect.

We look forward to sharing more great stories like these in 2019. Our only wish? That the year doesn’t hurry by quite as fast as this one.