Oracle Waterfront Campus Wins Commercial Real Estate Award for Best Office Development


AUSTIN, Texas—Wednesday, May 8th at the Four Seasons Hotel in downtown Austin, STG Design was awarded The 2019 Commercial Real Estate Award for the best office development in recognition for its architectural and interior design for the Oracle Waterfront Campus. The project, a 560,000-square-foot facility on South Lakeshore Boulevard on the banks of Lady Bird Lake, was selected from a field of 34 finalists in Central Texas. The award is STG Design’s fourth for the Oracle facility.

Organizers summed up the merits of the development as follows: “Oracle Corp.'s decision to build a shimmering, 560,000-square-foot facility on South Lakeshore Boulevard, on the doorstep of Lady Bird Lake, firmly established East Riverside as a hotbed for development. The grounds deftly blur the lines between public and private property, proving welcoming to the pedestrian-friendly community that surrounds it. And with up to 3,000 high-paying jobs created at the facility, Oracle’s economic impact on Austin can't be overlooked.” The Commercial Real Estate Awards are hosted by the Austin Business Journal and recognized the 10 most dynamic projects and transactions in the Austin metro for the past 12 months.

“This honor goes as much to Oracle for their shared vision and trust as it does to our team and all of those involved,” Jim Susman, principal at STG Design, said. “Much more than a corporate campus, the Oracle Waterfront was conceived to serve both existing and incoming talent as well as the community in support of Oracle’s project vision: to create a campus resonating from an active core, blending with the surrounding context as it expands from its center.”

Project partners in this award include, Ryan Companies (Lead Developer and General Contractor), EEA Consulting Engineers (Primary MEP), TBG Partners (Landscape Architect), Stantec (Civil Engineer), Walter P. Moore (Structural Engineer), Matthew Miller, Cresa (Buyer Broker), Mark Emerick, CBRA (Seller Broker), Heritage Title (Title Company), Oracle Corporation (Financier) and Armbrust & Brown PLLC (Law Firm).

Other winners of the 2019 Commercial Real Estate Awards were Austin Central Library, Magnolia Montessori For All, XBiotech USA, The Tyndall, Belterra Village, Goodwill North Outlet, Domain 12 and Whole Foods lease at Saltillo.

STG Design’s work on the Oracle Waterfront has also been recently recognized with an Urban Land Institute Impact Award for the Most Influential Project, a Golden Trowel Award for excellence in the Industrial/Commercial category and an Austin Green Award for outstanding sustainable design and innovation as well as design strategies that respond to rapidly evolving environmental, social, and health imperatives. The project has also been awarded USGBC LEED Gold and an AEGB 4-Star rating.

2018 Year in Review

STG Design has celebrated many successes in 2018, and as we look ahead to 2019, we’re celebrating the journey we’ve taken this past year. As we continue to pursue design excellence, we reflect on last year's accomplishments and challenges that have contributed to the progress in and around our communities. We are grateful to everyone who has played a role in the growth of our firm and look forward to an exciting new year.

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Oracle Receives Award for Sustainable Design

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Austin, TX – The Oracle Waterfront Campus has been recognized by the Austin Green Awards for outstanding sustainable design and innovation as well as design strategies that respond to rapidly evolving environmental, social, and health imperatives.

A celebration of green spaces, people places, and relationship to Lady Bird Lake, Oracle took great care to create a contemporary office campus that inspires outstanding employee performance while enhancing comfort and well-being. As a neighbor to both the trail and the lake, the verdant landscaped grounds offer a new connection to the local ecology, native plants, and iconic heritage shade trees. 2.75 acres of publicly accessible space has been created along Lake Shore Drive to promote healthy living—not just for Oracle’s employees but surrounding residents and businesses.

The design team met the challenge to create a resilient building system that would respect its surrounding environment and reduce the site's overall carbon footprint. To enable low impact measures, sustainable materials were carefully sourced for better efficiency and the building is self-sustained by its onsite utility plant. The use of native plants decreases water usage, and site water is directed into planting areas to provide additional water to vegetation. Other successful measures were Oracle’s purchase of the nearby apartments. The live-work-play environment encourages walking and biking which has dramatically reduced traffic in the area. All the strategies add up to a site enabled to preserve the integrity of the environment and promote further engagement with the natural space for years to come.

The Austin Green Awards was held on October 24th at The Sunset Room in Austin, Texas. We share this award with the entire project team including Ryan Companies, Square One Consultants, TBG Partners, Walter P. Moore, and EEA Consulting Engineers.

Pantex Wins Best Regional Government Project

Nashville, TN - The John C. Drummond Center at the Pantex Plant, designed by STG Design, has received the 2018 Award for Best Regional Project in the Government/Public Building category by ENR (Engineering News-Record).

Judges recognized the Pantex project for its safety, innovative design, and contribution to the industry as well as design quality and construction craftsmanship. The design team successfully met the challenges of developing a modern high-security facility in a remote location under a tight construction schedule by intentional selection of materials and building systems that could be fabricated off-site in controlled environments and sourcing quality subcontractors from nearby states.

The Department of Energy's Pantex facility provides an administrative and support structure charged with the safety, security, and effectiveness of the nation’s nuclear weapons mission. The 343,000-square-foot building, designed as a three-wing complex, houses 1,100 administrative staff and is equipped with a 300-seat auditorium, conference center, meeting spaces, full-service cafeteria, and medical and employee health and fitness facilities.

In addition to the ENR award, Pantex has received LEED certification, a globally recognized symbol of sustainability achievement. The benefit of LEED buildings is providing energy and water savings, conserving materials resources, generating less waste, and supporting overall human health and wellbeing.

Project team members Rich Grandt and Paul Spencer from STG Design attended the ceremony in Houston, Texas to accept the award. Congratulations to our client, Turner Construction and other project partners, and the entire project team.

Oracle Waterfront Campus Brings Home ULI Impact Award


AUSTIN, TX  - The Oracle Waterfront project received the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Impact Award for the Most Influential Project this week at their annual award ceremony. This award recognizes work that energizes and impacts its surrounding community by enhancing economic development, environmental remediation, and improved health. 

The new Oracle Waterfront Campus has provided a vision for growth, transformation, and economic potential in an area that was mostly underutilized. Paul Suttles, an architect at STG Design stated, "At the outset of the project, Oracle's leadership team envisioned a unique corporate campus; with a sense of permanence yet organic, to create a healthy and sustainable workplace that is at the heart of Oracle’s mission for this site. This design delivered on that vision."  The connection to nature is extensive through the use of native plants and six relocated heritage trees in the landscape, which was designed to add to the local ecology by attracting birds and butterflies. The campus has successfully emphasized health and wellness for employees and residents with the inclusion of B-Cycle stations and proximity to the Hike and Bike Trail. Notable public/private partnerships involved include the Chamber of Commerce, which was instrumental in securing Oracle’s expansion and the Trail Foundation, with whom the team worked to incorporate the master plan with the city’s East River Corridor master plan, maintaining pedestrian linkages, easements for bike lanes, and grid connectivity. The City of Austin was instrumental in facilitating the success of the project through the efforts of the Economic Development Council. Additionally, the South Shore district has benefited economically and aesthetically as the project has helped to open doors for new restaurants, new shopping, new residential developments, and the significant renovation of existing properties. 

The project team includes Ryan Companies, Square One Consultants, Asterisk Group Design, TBG Partners, Walter P. Moore, and EEA Consulting Engineers.

ULI Austin’s annual Impact Awards celebrate projects and people throughout Greater Austin that exemplify ULI’s mission: to provide leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities worldwide. The awards ceremony was held on August 28th at the ZACH Theatre in Austin, Texas.

Oracle Waterfront Campus Receives Golden Trowel Award

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AUSTIN, TX – The Oracle Waterfront campus, which is a vision for a new corporate campus on the edge of downtown in East Austin, has received the Golden Trowel Award for excellence in the Industrial/Commercial category.

STG Design provided design consultation and architectural services and was very proud to work with CW Oates to bring the concept to life. The choice to incorporate the use of stone was meant to serve as one of the building’s connections to nature and the outdoors – including a stunning outdoor plaza and paths that lead to the Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail. 

STG Design Principals Jim Susman and Jack Tisdale along with Rob Cousins were Principals in Charge and Square One served as Project Manager on the campus. Ryan Companies provided the construction and Walter P Moore structural engineering and EEA electrical engineering were also included on the team.

Located on Ladybird Lake, the 560,000 sf Oracle Waterfront campus is designed to attract, retain and inspire top talent—including the many millennials entering the workforce. The vision is a facility that inspires outstanding employee performance while enhancing comfort and well-being. The design includes flexible, forward-thinking spaces featuring large floorplates and ten-foot ceilings for abundant natural light, and a stunning outdoor plaza that provide workers with the opportunity to reflect and recharge. Amenities include multiple cafes and state-of-the-art wellness and fitness facilities. Planning is already underway on the next phase of the campus. 

The Central Texas Mason Contractors Association (CTMCA) recognizes and celebrates high-quality masonry design and craftsmanship with the annual Golden Trowel Awards. Each year outstanding architects, contractors, suppliers, and their masonry projects are evaluated for excellence.

The 2018 awards presentation was held on June 22nd at the Archer Hotel in Austin, Texas.

STG Design Becomes Employee Owned


Firm Celebrates Transition to 100 Percent Ownership by the Company’s Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP)

AUSTIN, TX – STG Design, an award-winning architecture, interior design, and planning firm celebrates a transition to 100 percent ownership by the company’s Employee Stock Ownership Plan (“ESOP”). At an “All-Hands Meeting,” this week, the announcement was made that ownership of the company has been transferred from the firm’s principal shareholders to STG Design employees. With the primary goals of continuity in leadership, autonomy, culture, and design services, the company elected to establish an ESOP to recognize and reward the commitment, passion, and talent of its employees, both present, and future. Based on STG Design’s strong performance over the last several years and a comprehensive review of the firm’s financial data, the shareholders concluded that this was an opportune time to sell and that the employees, through the ESOP, were the right buyer to whom to sell.

“Our employees are our most valuable resource and closest partners in the practice of design,” said Jim Susman, CEO. “We firmly believe that our people should control their own destiny and have the opportunity to experience the fulfillment of ownership.” Susman will continue as CEO, the firm’s management team remains in place, and STG seamlessly maintains its focus on world-class professional service and innovative business strategies.

MB Financial’s ESOP Finance Group with $20B in assets, BDO USA, LLP’s ESOP Advisory Group and McDermott Will & Emory LLP’s Corporate Transactions Practice structured the transaction and the plan for the firm. All assets are held, managed and controlled by the ESOP Trustee, GreatBanc Trust Company. GreatBanc will lead the ESOP consistent with its fiduciary responsibilities to act solely in the interests of the participants.
STG Design’s founder Jack Tisdale said “We are truly excited about transitioning STG Design to an employee-owned company.  At the same time, we are extremely grateful for the many terrific clients and business partners that have been part of our success over the last 42 years.”

Jim Susman, FAIA


AUSTIN, TX – STG Design was honored last week with the 2018 Firm Achievement Award from AIA Austin. This award transcends individual project accomplishments and recognizes one architectural practice every year for extraordinary contributions to the profession, sustained design excellence, and the broader engagement with our community. STG Design is grateful to the many clients, collaborators, consultants, and company employees throughout the years for their critical contributions to the achievement of this significant milestone. “Recognition of achievement by our peers is extremely gratifying,” said Jim Susman, President, and CEO. “Our STG team works every day to design at the highest levels, to bring creative business solutions to our clients. The award is a very pleasing and unintended consequence.”

Since 1976, STG Design has been grounded in the belief that great design optimizes business performance and human potential. The team has considerable experience providing successful planning and design solutions and the consistent quality of their work across a wide-range of project types has been recognized by more than 70 local, regional and national design awards. “STG Design has a long history of architectural work that has set the standard in Austin," said Tina Grider-Cannon, VP of Government Relations, Austin Chamber of Commerce. "This locally grown gem is a proud Austin institution.”

At STG, community engagement is a way of life—the firm is not only in the business of vitalizing cities, but they are also activists. For more than four decades, the STG staff has volunteered to lead boards, task forces and volunteers time to organizations like the Meals on Wheels, the Refuge, Mobile Loaves and Fishes, and the Boys and Girls Club.

The firm designs spaces that support the civic impact and diverse patterns of community life with a goal to enrich the urban identity and promote sustainable urbanization. David Stauch, Managing Principal of Capital Project Management, said of STG, “Part of the magic at STG is working with a group of people who value both process and product, who place the client’s interests above their own, and who seem to enjoy the building of relationships as much as the buildings.” STG has worked on projects with influential entities including The University of Texas, St. Edward’s University, The State of Texas, Dell, Apple, and Google. The firm has celebrated two significant projects including the sustainable mixed-use development of the Seaholm Power Plant project and most recently the opening of Oracle’s Texas headquarters.