Baranski, Hammer, moretta & sheehy
Through knowledge, experience and enthusiasm, Baranski Hammer Moretta & Sheehy has remained a driving force in custom residential, institutional and commercial design and planning through Illinois and beyond.
arCHiTeCTUre LeaDers TODAY
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Baranski, Hammer, Moretta & Sheehy
True Dedication to client and community by Joel Cornell ABOVE: Private residence, Galena, Ill. This 6,000 sq. ft. house is built on a wooded site in rural Jo Daviess County. The house's wings spread out and engage the site so that most of the rooms have three walls of natural light. The first floor steps down the site allowing the living spaces in the rear to connect directly with the forest floor. The exterior brick transitions to the interior at the entry tower with the goal of unifying the entire building. Photo by Jim Baranski. OPPOSITE PAGE: LDB Corporate Headquarters, Mohave Valley, Ariz. This 6,000 sq. ft. office building is located in one of the hottest areas of the U.S. The building has a curving blue wall down its center unifying the spaces within. Every major space in the building has a view of the wall or is bounded by it. The wall's blue color was selected to temper the desert heat by providing a "visual coolness" for the occupants. Photo by Jim Baranski.
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Fueled by an expansive range of expertise and decades of combined experience, the architecture and planning firm of Baranski Hammer Moretta & Sheehy (BHMS) has kept itself on the cutting edge of technology and design. Based in Galena, Ill., with offices in Chicago, BHMS has thrived by focusing their efforts on serving their clients, embracing creativity through design and completing projects accurately, with quality and on time. BHMS serves clients on institutional, commercial, multi-family residential, and custom residential projects. Unlike many companies that start in and expand from large cities, this firm started in 1991 in the small historic community of Galena (pop. 3,000), and expanded with an additional office in Chicago in 2004. In 2006, Principals Jim Baranski and Bob Hammer acquired the well-established Evanston, Ill. firm of Moretta & Sheehy Architects to form BHMS. “Combining our firms served to broaden our range, expand our client base into institutional markets, and give us a more diverse array of specialized talents,” Baranski said. The Chicago office provides opportunities for largescale projects, and proximity to the firm’s Chicago clients, which include Loyola University. BHMS tends to manage anywhere from three or more projects for the university at one time; from renovating an older building into the university’s new law school facilities,
to the design and planning of new laboratories. Among their current Loyola projects, BHMS is working on the renovation and expansion of facilities in Woodstock, Ill. that will serve as a retreat and ecology campus for the university, and on a new 250-seat performing arts theatre in the Mundelein Center Building in Chicago. The firm’s small-town roots have established both a strong reliance on advanced technology to fully meet the needs of clients regardless of location, as well as an emphasis on personal relationships and excellent communication. The firm’s policy to work closely with clients and contractors throughout each project ensures that designs fully meet the client’s needs, and that the final construction is a true depiction of the design. 3-D computer modeling and renderings allow for clear representations of proposed designs so clients can visualize what the final product will look like, and easily participate in the design process. The technological ability to transfer information rapidly between the architect, client and contractors complements the firm’s reputation for moving quickly on projects and meeting difficult deadlines. “When working in institutional/university markets, the deadlines are non-negotiable, because the students will be coming back in the fall, one way or another,” Hammer said. The firm’s overall design philosophy is to create build-
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THIS PAGE: Loyola University 4th floor information commons, Chicago, Ill. Special request by the University President for BHMS to complete the top floor of a newly completed building on the lakefront. The project is a 4,000 sq. ft. glass enclosed penthouse to be used as a lounge/meeting and seminar space. Photo by Matt Krol. OPPOSITE PAGE: (TOP) RBC Tech Center, Elk Grove Village, Ill. This 100,000 sq. ft. speculative office building was designed to attract high-tech business with a need for office and warehouse space. Silver horizontal ribbed siding and patterns of flat metal panels and green glass are used to enhance the hgh-tech image of the building. BHMS receimed this commissions after winning a design competition sponsored by the developer. Photo by Tom Sheehy; (BOTTOM) Private Residence, Galena, Ill. This house is organized around a central gallery space that is naturally lit with a a clerstory. The gallery's focal point is a two story stone fireplace flanked by two window walls looking into the forest beyond. The two-car garage is attached to the house with stepped pergola structure. Photo by Bob Humbert.
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ings and spaces that are timeless in that they are well proportioned and elegantly detailed, and yet they also clearly reflect the period in which they have been created. Practical, functional design that meets the client’s program is the first priority. BHMS can provide LEED AP services, but sustainable design considerations are built into every project. “Clients will ultimately save money when using design methods, building supplies and energy sources that are sustainable,” Baranski said. BHMS’s approach to design and client service has allowed the firm to remain busy throughout this rough economy. Much of the work is due to repeat business and new work obtained through client referrals – the best measure of client satisfaction. As the economy improves, BHMS looks forward to expanding its client base and having the opportunity to tackle new project types. ALT
Earlier this year Elara was presented with a First Place 2010 ASHRAE International Excellence in Engineering Technology Award for innovation in their engineering design for Loyola University’s Information Commons Building. Elara served as the mechanical, electrical, plumbing, fire protection and information technology engineer on the project. (Sustainability Consultant: Transsolar Klimaengineering, Architect: Solomon Cordwell Buenz).
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Through knowledge, experience and enthusiasm, Baranski Hammer Moretta & Sheehy has remained a driving force in custom residential, instituti...