Firm Profile

Established in 1988, BWA Architecture + Planning is led by principals Richard Winston, AIA, and Morris Zimmerman, AIA, LEED bd+c, who have more than 60 years combined experience as architects and builders. In projects ranging from renovation and restoration to new construction, our clients value our enthusiasm, service, technical knowledge, design ability, and our capacity to take on projects of varying size.

Located in Center City Philadelphia, we are within easy reach of your project. We make sure that we are available to our clients and present at the job site as the pace and conditions of the project demands. We believe the growth of our reputation is a direct consequence of our concern for providing conscientious service to our clients.

Significant among the firm’s strengths are the following:

Our Firm
We excel at working in a group decision-making environment. Even our broadly publicized “hallmark” projects involved the active participation of owners and end users. We believe that good design comes from a team process. Working to become part of your team, understanding and supporting your organization’s protocols, approval processes, and communication styles–is an essential part of our design method. As a starting point, we embrace the opportunity of working with many people and a variety of perspectives to create an effective design process. We know that a process that is tailored to your needs will lead to an outstanding design solution.
Service means more than getting the drawings done. It means being attentive to your needs as a client, as you define them. We are fully accountable to you for all aspects of the design, documentation, and construction administration process. In order to provide such service, we developed our organization and management structure to assure an extraordinary degree of principal involvement. Richard Winston will be a full participant every step of the way: conducting meetings with your staff and user group representatives, directing and inspiring the design and documentation process in our office and actively over-seeing work during construction. We are available to the contractor to quickly respond to questions and submittals, to expedite approvals and to review construction. Our firm emphasizes quality control in the production of the construction documents and in overseeing work in the field. We believe that this high level of service is essential for a successful project and a satisfied client.
Our architects have extensive experience with the nuts and bolts of construction, which gives us a great advantage as designers. Principals Richard Winston and Morris Zimmerman have more than 60 years combined experience as architects and builders. First-hand construction knowledge helps us to make informed judgments about which materials and construction methods are suitable or cost-effective, and which are not. Furthermore, our ability to “speak the same language” makes us extremely effective in working with contractors in the field. We view your budget not as a constraint, but as a tool which must be used along with others in the process of creating excellent designs. We have great facility with a broad range of construction and preservation techniques, and can confidently develop an appropriate economical approach to your project.
Reducing harmful impact to the environment by designing responsibly has been part of our mission since our inception. Initially we engage clients in a discussion about the benefits of “green design” and work to establish priorities that fit their specific project goals. Experience has taught us that the strategies with the most immediate appeal have positive environmental impact and save the client money, usually in operating costs. Management of energy is frequently the first area we investigate: How much can we reduce energy use by creating a good thermal envelope, utilizing natural ventilation, maximizing daylight to cut electrical consumption, storing and recycling energy, using solar or geo-thermal design.
Recycling old buildings is one of the most effective strategies we employ to save energy in the construction process and manufacture of materials, to reduce consumption of material resources and conserve open land—often with the added benefit of preserving our historic heritage. With the proper selection of low-impact and non-hazardous materials and, at times, with recycled and naturally degradable materials, we are able to avoid damage to the environment.
BWA excels at working with older structures on projects that may range from preservation to adaptive reuse. The challenge in most projects is the process of upgrading and modifying to meet new program requirements, to address life-safety codes and accessibility for the disabled, to accommodate general change and growth and to counteract the effects of aging and deterioration. We understand the ways in which older buildings are fragile and inflexible, and the ways in which they are adaptable and changeable. In any given year, more than half of our not-for-profit and institutional projects involves renovating, preserving, or altering older and historic structures.
Respectful contextual design demands an understanding of both the physical environment and a client’s philosophical approach. We have completed projects that range from faithful period restoration to highly contemporary new construction, always with an eye to the goals of the client and the demands of the existing context. We aim to complement and build upon the recognized strengths of your structure. This approach demands sensitivity to the essential qualities of each building, including scale, massing, color palette, architectural style, and choices of materials.
A keystone of our practice is a commitment to design of the highest quality. Within BWA, we encourage one another to seek fresh insights and pursue inventive solutions. As a team, we also demand of ourselves rigor in thinking through and detailing the design so that the building is as well executed in its realization as the design was in creation of the concept. Our designs have earned recognition from clients and peers alike, resulting in our work being published in Architectural Record, Architecture, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Philadelphia Business Journal, Residential Architect, Venture Magazine, Traditional Building, The Philadelphia Architect and The Pennsylvania Architect. We have received honors and recognition from the AIA, the Preservation Alliance of Pennsylvania, Interiors magazine and various local historical societies and review boards.

Our Team

OurTeam
Richard W. Winston, AIA, NCARB
Richard W. Winston, AIA, NCARBPrincipal in Charge, Project Manager
Co-founder and principal of BWA architecture + planning, Dick Winston has over 35 years experience in all facets of the building delivery process. Virtually unique among his peers, Dick has over 15 years direct contracting experience—a valuable asset when making decisions about the economy and constructability of designs. Dick is frequently sought as a consultant on the modification of existing structures and on construction processes. As an educator, Dick has guest-lectured on professional practice at University of Pennsylvania and Temple University and has taught design at Drexel University. Deeply committed to both his craft and his community, Dick serves on the Board of Directors for the Community Design Collaborative and is a member of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Society for College and University Planners.

Education
University of Pennsylvania, Master of Architecture
Princeton University, Bachelor of Arts, School of Architecture and Urban Planning

Professional Registrations
Licensed Architect in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland and Delaware; NCARB Certified

Morris Zimmerman, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP bd+c
Morris Zimmerman, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP bd+cPrincipal in Charge, Project Manager
Active in the design industry for over 25 years, Morrie Zimmerman has led many award-winning new design, restoration, and renovation projects. He provides technical expertise during design and construction phases—a skill he has honed through years of construction experience both as a builder and as a trained architect. He also is an expert in sustainable design and is fully knowledgeable of the LEED certification process for buildings. Morrie’s excellent organizational and communications skills help to assure that projects run smoothly and teams stay on track.

Education
Drexel University, Bachelor of Architecture
Arizona State University, Architectural Engineering

Professional Registrations
Licensed Architect in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland; NCARB Certified
LEED Accredited Professional – Building Design and Construction

William Collett, AIA
William Collett, AIAProject Manager, Project Architect
William Collett is a skilled project manager and architect who has been designing and leading projects at BWA for more than ten years. Bill has remarkably diverse project experience, having worked for several firms in Philadelphia as well as firms in other states and in the Netherlands. This background spans projects for SEPTA, the Philadelphia Free Library and other public projects, apartment buildings, both here and abroad, institutional and higher education buildings and work with not-for-profit organizations. Bill is also our “go-to guy” for matters involving application of building codes, including accessibility.

Education
Carnegie Mellon University, Bachelor of Architecture
University of Copenhagen, Architectural Studies Degree

Professional Registrations
Licensed Architect in Massachusetts

Thomas P. Kirchner, AIA, LEED AP bd+c
Thomas P. Kirchner, AIA, LEED AP bd+cProject Manager, Project Architect
Active in the design industry for over 15 years, Thomas Kirchner has designed for a range of project types, including affordable housing, non-profit, residential, institutional, historic preservation and health care. As project architect, he has designed several award projects. Tom is proficient in Building Information Modeling software [Revit Architecture], and provides expertise in the implementation of three-dimensional information modeling in all project phases. An adjunct professor at the Philadelphia University since 2007, he teaches architectural design studio courses in the first, fourth, and fifth years of the program

Education
University of Pennsylvania, Masters of Architecture
Colgate University, Bachelor of Architecture

Professional Registrations
Licensed Architect in Massachusetts

Katherine Lent, LEED AP bd+c
Katherine Lent, LEED AP bd+c Project Architect
Kathy Lent has been designing and providing project support at BWA for four years. She has prior experience working for architecture firms in San Francisco, New York, and Boston on projects ranging from residential to healthcare. At BWA, Kathy assists project architects on renovations for a broad range of building typologies including institutional, higher education, and multifamily residential. She is actively involved in the emerging professionals group of the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects and has played a key role on several design projects for local not-for-profits as a volunteer with the Community Design Collaborative.

Education
Yale University, Bachelor of Architecture
University of Pennsylvania, Master of Architecture

Bryan David Jones
Bryan David JonesProject Designer
Bryan joined BWA in 2015. His prior experience includes 3D modeling, rendering and construction documentation for a variety of local multi-family residential projects, as well as construction management and design-build work. At BWA he is a leader in managing the office’s Revit standards. Bryan has a particular interest in sustainable architecture as well as industrial design and is an accomplished carpenter. He is actively involved in the emerging professionals group of the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects and the Community Design Collaborative.

Education
Savannah College of Art and Design, Master of Architecture
Savannah College of Art and Design, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Architecture

Recognition

Bryn Mawr College Rhoads Hall
Bryn Mawr, PA
2002, Historical Architectural Review Board Award for Preservation and Renovation

Byron Story Foundation: Alternative High School
Philadelphia, PA
2007, Community Design Collaborative Community Design Award
2007, 1% Solution Award for Good Design in Pro-Bono Work

Congregation Rodeph Shalom Sanctuary Restoration
Philadelphia, PA
2006, AIA Philadelphia Preservation Award
2006, AIA Pennsylvania Citation of Merit
2006, Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia
2006, Preservation Pennsylvania
2005, Cover story of Traditional Building Magazine

Connelly House
Philadelphia, PA
2010, AIA Philadelphia Community Design Award
First LEED Gold high-rise supportive housing facility in Philadelphia

Cyber Village Senior Housing
Philadelphia, PA
2007, 1% Solution Award for Good Design in Pro-Bono Work

Hood College Shriner Hall
Frederick, MD
2003, ABC Baltimore Chapter, Outstanding Construction Management
2002, ABC Baltimore Chapter, Outstanding Preservation/Adaptive Reuse

The Library Company of Philadelphia Cassatt House Renovations and Additions
Philadelphia, PA
2003, Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia “Grand Jury Design Award”

Saint Joseph’s University Learning Commons
Philadelphia, PA
2013, American Libraries Magazine Library Design Showcase

University of Pennsylvania Federal Credit Union
Philadelphia, PA
1989, Interiors Magazine Design Award

University of Pennsylvania Sigma Delta Tau Sorority
Philadelphia, PA
1993, University City Historical Society Historic Preservation Award

Traditional Building Magazine
Richard Winston Headshot
Richard W. Winston, AIA, NCARB
Principal in Charge, Project Manager
rwinston@bwa-architects.com

Co-founder and principal of BWA architecture + planning, Dick Winston has over 35 years experience in all facets of the building delivery process. Virtually unique among his peers, Dick has over 15 years direct contracting experience—a valuable asset when making decisions about the economy and constructability of designs. Dick is frequently sought as a consultant on the modification of existing structures and on construction processes. As an educator, Dick has guest-lectured on professional practice at University of Pennsylvania and Temple University and has taught design at Drexel University. Deeply committed to both his craft and his community, Dick serves on the Board of Directors for the Community Design Collaborative and is a member of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Society for College and University Planners.

Education
University of Pennsylvania, Master of Architecture
Princeton University, Bachelor of Arts, School of Architecture and Urban Planning

Professional Registrations
Licensed Architect in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland and Delaware; NCARB Certified

Morris Zimmerman Headshot
Morris Zimmerman, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP bd+c
Principal in Charge, Project Manager
mzimmerman@bwa-architects.com

Active in the design industry for over 25 years, Morrie Zimmerman has led many award-winning new design, restoration, and renovation projects. He provides technical expertise during design and construction phases—a skill he has honed through years of construction experience both as a builder and as a trained architect. He also is an expert in sustainable design and is fully knowledgeable of the LEED certification process for buildings. Morrie’s excellent organizational and communications skills help to assure that projects run smoothly and teams stay on track.

Education
Drexel University, Bachelor of Architecture
Arizona State University, Architectural Engineering

Professional Registrations
Licensed Architect in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland; NCARB Certified
LEED Accredited Professional – Building Design and Construction

William Collett Headshot
William Collett, AIA
Project Manager, Project Architect

William Collett is a skilled project manager and architect who has been designing and leading projects at BWA for more than ten years. Bill has remarkably diverse project experience, having worked for several firms in Philadelphia as well as firms in other states and in the Netherlands. This background spans projects for SEPTA, the Philadelphia Free Library and other public projects, apartment buildings, both here and abroad, institutional and higher education buildings and work with not-for-profit organizations. Bill is also our “go-to guy” for matters involving application of building codes, including accessibility.

Education
Carnegie Mellon University, Bachelor of Architecture
University of Copenhagen, Architectural Studies Degree

Professional Registrations
Licensed Architect in Massachusetts

Thomas Kirchner Headshot
Thomas P. Kirchner, AIA, LEED AP bd+c
Project Manager, Project Architect

Active in the design industry for over 15 years, Thomas Kirchner has designed for a range of project types, including affordable housing, non-profit, residential, institutional, historic preservation and health care. As project architect, he has designed several award projects. Tom is proficient in Building Information Modeling software [Revit Architecture], and provides expertise in the implementation of three-dimensional information modeling in all project phases. An adjunct professor at the Philadelphia University since 2007, he teaches architectural design studio courses in the first, fourth, and fifth years of the program

Education
University of Pennsylvania, Masters of Architecture
Colgate University, Bachelor of Architecture

Professional Registrations
Licensed Architect in Massachusetts

Katherine Lent Headshot
Katherine Lent, LEED AP bd+c
Project Architect

Kathy Lent has been designing and providing project support at BWA for four years. She has prior experience working for architecture firms in San Francisco, New York, and Boston on projects ranging from residential to healthcare. At BWA, Kathy assists project architects on renovations for a broad range of building typologies including institutional, higher education, and multifamily residential. She is actively involved in the emerging professionals group of the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects and has played a key role on several design projects for local not-for-profits as a volunteer with the Community Design Collaborative.

Education
Yale University, Bachelor of Architecture
University of Pennsylvania, Master of Architecture