London, United Kingdom
New York, New York
Masdar City, Abu Dhabi
Auckland, New Zealand
W-B has announced the appointment of four new Principals for 2021, Charlie Chen, Florian Frotscher, Matt Ducharme and Matthew Stephenson.
Leadership from the Principal group is an essential component of the success of W-B. As expressed by W-B CEO Nik Karalis, “the Principal group is charged with the development of Woods Bagot including meeting the challenges we confront today and those that await us in the future. We welcome our new members and entrust them with the same leadership and development responsibilities as we continue to expand our business in an exciting era.”
With 15 years of solid experience from architecture to urban design, Charlie has a strong understanding of development and management to the design process. His capability covers master plan and urban design in the field of regional planning, TOD, urban regeneration and complex and contributes to better urban environment with a sustainable and ecologically sensitive approach. He has been involved in multiscale of projects across China, working on projects in Beijing and Shanghai as well as Hangzhou and Kunming. Charlie’s projects have gained outstanding reputations in Southeast Asia, winning several international design competitions in Vietnam, Jakarta, and Dubai.
“I find inspiration in the smaller moments – the smell of a noodle shop that tells you that you’re almost home, the locals-only coffee shop or the past lives of a favourite building. It’s the things that make you feel part of a city that are worth taking notice of.”
Florian is an architect with a wealth of experience on award-winning commercial buildings, workplace interiors, residential and mixed-use projects, having worked on multiple large-scale developments in the UK, Germany, Switzerland, Hungary, Slovakia and Italy. He brings extensive knowledge of planning systems in European markets, as well as design expertise gained from working in many different cultural and geographical environments, to support the London Studio’s growing European portfolio. Florian is a registered architect in the UK (ARB) and Germany (AKNW) and has been an invited speaker at numerous industry events, and a panel judge for a range of workplace design competitions.
“Rigor and curiosity are deep in the DNA of Woods Bagot. Rather than trying to get our clients to come around to our way of thinking, we offer a collaborative process that allows us to empower theirs. We build, revive, reframe and celebrate, we push for global innovation with cultural fit.”
With degrees in structural engineering as well as architecture, Matt Ducharme bases his design thinking on a multi-disciplinary perspective. His diverse portfolio reflects a range of scale and building typologies with an emphasis on experience, specificity of context, and technology. He has led award-winning projects in the U.S. and Australia that include civic, mixed-use, high-rise towers, next generation performing arts, workplace, sports, and master planning.
Matt’s most prominent work includes 447 Collins Street (The Arch), Australia’s first true mixed-use tower. As Project Director he oversaw the global team responsible for creating this dramatic civic gesture for the people of Melbourne. Matt also served as Senior Designer for 111 West 57th Street in New York. At 1,400 feet, this landmark tower will be the slenderest skyscraper in the world with a 1:24 slenderness ratio. Most recently, Matt lead the design of the MSG Sphere in Las Vegas; a next generation performing arts and entertainment venue that will redefine the future of concerts and entertainment. He received his Master of Architecture from the University of Michigan and his Bachelor of Science in structural engineering from the University of Wisconsin.
“To meet our generation’s greatest challenges and design for the future we must continually push boundaries. To look outside ourselves and understand that innovation only occurs through an openness towards new perspectives. At W-B we have created a studio and global practice that emphasizes a diversity of thought, expertise, and backgrounds.”
Matt Stephenson, AIA, LEED AP, has worked on a wide variety of high-profile projects, both internationally and within New York City as a part of Woods Bagot. His work is characterized by an emphasis on user experience and the creation of spaces that allow opportunities for personal connection with others within urban environments. His experience within all phases of the design and delivery process, developed across multiple projects in New York City, provide a groundwork for innovation and success within each design solution and resulting space. Matt’s work includes The Amberly mixed use development in Brooklyn, The Union Crossing warehouse repurposing in the Bronx, The American Academy of Dramatic Arts renovations in Manhattan as well as a new residential development in the south Bronx. In addition to these local projects Matt has worked on multiple prominent international designs including The Sydney University Business School.
“Seeing the spaces that the team has worked so hard on come to life is a great feeling. Being able to experience designs that were once concepts being engaged by the city – housing afterschool study groups, wedding dance rehearsals and city events – is an incredibly fulfilling experience and one I am excited to continue in our future projects.”
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