Phoenix has in recent years made strides in rediscovering, remodeling, and remaking its urban neighborhoods and creating a more sustainable future. This renaissance, along with the city’s young and educated workforce, is attracting innovative new companies. Many of the best office and workspaces in Phoenix are designed by architects interested in local traditions, local history, and a sustainable future. Increasingly Phoenix, Tempe, and other parts of the metro area are appearing on the radar of large corporations looking for new headquarters, tech-startups looking for talent and affordable workspaces — or even “anti-offices” — and creative entrepreneurs looking for the future. These are the architects helping them redefine work and workspaces, ranked according to such factors as longevity in the business, award-winning design, and scope of clientele.

Top Architects

McCarthy Nordburg

Jennifer Wallace-Sasek

NAOIP Interior Architect of the Year

2850 E. Camelback Road #250, Phoenix, AZ 85016

About McCarthy Nordburg

Founded in 1986, McCarthy Nordburg is a leading local firm that has designed buildings and interiors for, among others, corporate, education, and medical clients. When designing its award-winning office projects, McCarthy Nordburg focuses on the individual client and works to blend the client’s corporate culture, values, and priorities into the design, believing that “culture and work style go hand in hand,” and that great office design can enhance a company’s relationship with its industry and its customers. Winner of the Interior Architect of the Year award from the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP), the firm’s work has been featured in many publications. Managing Partner Jennifer Wallace-Sasek has a bachelor’s degree in interior architecture from Columbia College Chicago.

Featured Projects

McCarthy Nordburg recently designed the YAM Worldwide Center, a 66k-square-foot, $7.9M office in Scottsdale. Industrial chic with bright splashes of color, exposed ductwork and steel everywhere, the cutting-edge space features collaboration areas with bench seating. The firm also designed an “anti-office” for Mindspace in Tempe, a 5,500-square-foot collaborative work space that looks more like a restaurant and lounge than an office, with no traditional dedicated workspaces. McCarthy Nordburg also recently designed a 113k-square-foot new office space in Tempe for Fortune 500 global shipping company, the second project the firm has worked on with the company. Focusing on attracting and keeping the best employees, the company wanted an upscale office design, including a stylish employee lounge, up-to-the-minute technology, and an open and collaborative plan.

HDR Architecture

Mark Ryan

AIA Design Award

3200 E. Camelback Road, Suite 350, Phoenix, AZ 85018

About HDR Architecture

HDR Architecture, a large international architecture firm with 225 offices and 10,000 employees all over the world, has been named No. 5 of the Top 100 Global Global Design Firms by Building Design magazine, and No. 8 of the Top 300 Architecture Firms by Architectural Record. Phoenix Design Principal Mark Ryan recently signed on with HDR after running his own firm for 14 years. A renowned architect and prime mover in Phoenix’s ongoing urban rebirth, Ryan has a degree from the Graduate School at the Architectural Association of London. He has been an adjunct professor at the Design School at Arizona State University and the School of Architecture at the University of Arizona in Tucson, and he served as the past president of the Phoenix Metro Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA).

Featured Projects

Taking solid and stately old buildings and creating something new and exciting from their bones, Ryan is playing a role in revitalizing downtown Phoenix. He’s also helping to redefine the nature and practice of work with his office designs. His design for The Department, a co-working space for freelancers and entrepreneurs, won an AIA Design award. The ultramodern and ultracool space uses salvaged materials and features unique furniture designed by a local artist. The same kind of stylish, sleek, and modern style, with lots of natural light and exposed ductwork, pervades the MarketplaceONE offices for an investment firm, which Ryan designed in the same building. He salvaged acoustical panels from Phoenix Children’s Museum, and the office was named one of the “10 Top Coolest Offices” by Az Business Magazine.

RSP Architects

Joe Tyndall

NAIOP Arizona Interior Architecture Firm of the Year Award,
ENR Magazine Award of Merit

502 S. College Avenue #203, Tempe, AZ 85281

About RSP Architects

Based in Minneapolis and with offices in Phoenix, Dallas, and around the world, the international firm RSP has worked on several office projects in the Phoenix metro area. RSP’s five international locations typically work on some 1,000 projects a year, and the company has been around for nearly 40 years. The firm’s Phoenix office has received an Interior Architecture Firm of the Year Award from NAIOP Arizona. RSP’s Phoenix office is led by Joe Tyndall, a graduate of Arizona State University who has been with the firm for more than 15 years.

Featured Projects

RSP Architects’ Phoenix office won a recent Award of Merit of interior/tenant improvement design from ENR Magazine for its work on the new corporate headquarters for Phoenix-based Sprouts Farmers Markets. The 80k-square-foot office includes a front porch-style design and has four stories, each with a different design theme. The headquarters also features a commercial kitchen. The Phoenix office of RSP Architects also designed the Wentworth Property Company Corporate Office, a 14,740-square-foot space that features a bar and cafe on the first of three floors, as well as a game room and patio. The project features collaborative work spaces and private offices and is the picture of the ultramodern office. The firm also designed a 34,119-square-foot, $2.5M office project for Cushman & Wakefield, a commercial real estate firm. The two floors have desks for sitting or standing, a mix of collaborative and private spaces, a dramatic lobby, and a restaurant and bar for taking out clients and socializing.


Rob Gaspard
Richard Jensen
Ben Nesbeitt

2524 N. 24th Street, Phoenix, AZ 85008


Created when famed local firm Will Bruder and Partners split, WORKSBUREAU has designed offices and civic, commercial, education, and mixed-use spaces across the Phoenix metro area and all over the world. The firm is led by Principals Rob Gaspard, Richard Jensen, and Ben Nesbeitt. Gaspard has a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Louisiana State University. Jensen has a Master of Architecture from the University of Virginia and has lectured at Arizona State University, the University of Virginia, and elsewhere. Widely published and exhibited, Jensen is the author of Clark and Menefee, a monograph published by Princeton Architectural Press. Nesbeitt has a Master of Architecture degree from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. He has taught design classes at the University of Illinois and Arizona State University and has been a guest critic at Yale.

Featured Projects

WORKSBUREAU designed 979 Playa Del Norte, an 111k-square-foot complex of Class A offices on a 1.75 acre site in Tempe. The firm included the latest sustainable design techniques and technology features into the office building, creating an innovative and efficient workspace with inspiring views of downtown Phoenix, Tempe town lake, and the desert mountains around the Valley of the Sun. While the WORKSBUREAU team was still with Will Bruder, they designed the distinctive Henkel North American Headquarters, a 348k-square-foot office building in Scottsdale. The four-story building features a unique “glass curtain wall” and is constructed of aluminum and native sandstone from Ashfork, Arizona.

CCBG Architects Inc.

Brian Cassidy

AIA Arizona Architects Medal

102 E. Buchanan Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004

About CCBG Architects Inc.

CCBG Architects have been designing structures in the Phoenix metro area for nearly 50 years, including many churches, recreation centers, and homes. The firm of 16 architects, which also has an office in San Diego, is also a local leader in urban infill and adaptive reuse. It has used these skills to realize Phoenix’s popular new office destination in the Warehouse District south of downtown, which is getting a lot of attention lately as a potential magnet for young and creative startups and tech companies. CCBG and its president, Brian Cassidy, are deeply involved in the redesign and redevelopment of the Warehouse District. Cassidy has been president of the firm since 1988. He is a past president of AIA Arizona and was awarded the AIA Arizona Architects Medal in 2014. He graduated from the Arizona State University College of Architecture.

Featured Projects

CCBG, which has its own offices in the Historic Warehouse District, has designed several sleek, modern offices and other spaces in the historic brick buildings that once were the center of Phoenix’s shipping and storing industry back when the railroad held sway. To create new collaborative and inspiring offices for the public relations and communication firm R&R Partners, CCBG transformed a produce warehouse on the National Historic Register. While holding to the historic look of the red-brick facade of the 1926 building, which originally house the Ong Yut Geong Wholesale Market, the designers created a modern and creative, class- friendly interior for the staff, with exposed rafters, metal and concrete surfaces, and a lot of open space. CCBG also created an office space in the same area of the Warehouse District for Seedspot, a social entrepreneur incubator. The 4,500- square-foot space, with its open layout, red brick, high ceilings, exposed wood rafters, and concrete floors, is consistent with the elegant-industrial aesthetic that’s making this area so popular with creative entrepreneurs.


Mike Davis

AZRE Real Estate Development Award,
Gold Nugget Grand Award

74 E. Rio Salado Boulevard, Suite 200, Tempe AZ 85281

About Davis

Architect Mike Davis and interior designer Lisa Davis opened Davis in 1991 and have designed distinctive and unforgettable hotels, retail, and multi-family projects in Phoenix and elsewhere, but it is with large-scale, high-end office projects that they excel. The firm says it has designed about a third of the “Class A business environments” in Metro Phoenix over the last 25 years. Mike Davis graduated from the College of Architecture at the University of Arizona and has worked in the state for 40 years. The firm has won numerous awards for its work, including a Real Estate Development Award from AZRE magazine.

Featured Projects

The Marina Heights office project in Tempe, a city-defining development that has been recognized as one of the more important valley office projects in recent years because of its potential to draw new companies and talent to the budding tech and start-up hub, is also said to be the largest office development deal in Arizona history. Comprising five buildings on 20 acres on Tempe Town Lake, the mixed-use development was described by Principal Architect Richard S. Drinkwater as a series of “minimalist stainless steel tower monoliths.” It does certainly look futuristic and shiny, and the project gives the college city a shimmering polish that just screams innovation and creativity. Another large Davis office project in Tempe is Hayden Ferry Lakeside, which has a “nautical” style in a nod to the glassy body of water it faces, including blue glass in one lobby to create an underwater feeling. Near the gateway to downtown Tempe, the 265k-square-foot, urban-futuristic Phase III of the project was recently completed.


Art Gensler
Jay Silverberg
Beth Harmon-Vaughn

AZ|RE RED Award,
Architectural Record Good Design is Good Business Award

201 E. Washington Street., Suite 750, Phoenix, AZ 85004

About Gensler

The leading international architecture firm Gensler has a talented and innovative group of designers in Phoenix who have worked on many large office projects and corporate headquarters, as well as large academic, civic, athletic, and cultural buildings around the metro area and the Southwest. Known for its work with sustainable design and its fresh ideas, Gensler has been honored with many awards and accolades. The local office is led by Design Principal Jay Silverberg, an architect with more that 25 years in the business. Widely published and sought after as an architectural critic and lecturer, Silverberg earned his Bachelor and Master of Architecture at the University of Arizona in Tucson. Gensler’s Phoenix office is also led by Managing Director-Principal Beth Harmon-Vaughn, a member of the Taliesin West Board of Stewards for the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation and an Adjunct Professor at Arizona State University. She has a PhD in Sustainability and Workplace Productivity.

Featured Projects

Gensler’s Phoenix office designed offices for the travel website Booking.com to be an ode to Arizona’s past and future. Hoping to capture the “essence of Arizona and the Sonoran Desert” in the 2,800-square-foot facility, the designers added many playful Southwestern touches — cactus and swinging saloon doors, to name a few — and used locally sourced and reclaimed materials. For the new 65k-square-foot law offices for Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie, Gensler’s Phoenix crew did a modern riff on the staid old law office, with an emphasis on collaboration and efficiency. That doesn’t mean it’s a strictly utilitarian space by any means: it is stylish and warm with wood floors and a gallery’s worth of art throughout. With creative details like a combined lounge and library with rotating bookshelves, these offices combine high polish and hard work.

LGE Design Build

David E. Sellers
Vince Dalke

NAIOP Property Awards,
AZRE Real Estate Development Awards

740 N. 52nd Street, Phoenix, AZ 85008

About LGE Design Build

Part of Phoenix’s active LGE Design-Build Company, the LGE Design group opened in 2014 and has already had a major impact on the valley’s office space environment. The group is led by Vice President and Principal Vince Dalke, who joined the firm after working in architecture in the valley for more than 20 years. A native of the state, Dalke has worked on all manner of projects in Arizona, including spaces for industrial and manufacturing, retail, and restaurant clients. Dalke graduated from Arizona State University with bachelor’s degree in Architectural Design. Studio Director and Principal Ben McRae has won National Association of Industrial and Office (NAIOP) Properties awards and a Real Estate Development Awards from AZRE Magazine.

Featured Projects

LGE Design Group worked on a new headquarters for Garmin International at the Chandler Corporate Center. The National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP) and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certified Project of the Year is a two-story, 60k-square-foot model of environmental and sustainable design for the company’s staff of about 300. LEED Certified Gold, the office building has photovoltaic solar panels over 175 parking spaces, and is close to net zero energy use. The offices are very inviting and stylish inside, with a lot of high-end wood panelling, open spaces and glass, and the got-to-have perks of the new workspace such as a “beach” volleyball court. The firm also designed the Scheduling Institute, a NAIOP Re-Development Project of the Year-winning facility for the largest dental training company in the world. LGE converted a historic fruit and vegetable warehouse into a 23k-square-foot medical and dental facility in Phoenix’s up-and-coming business hub known as the Warehouse District. The offices are within walking distance to light rail, so the Scheduling Institute’s trainees can fly into Phoenix and take it straight to the facility, never needing a rental car. The project included a complete remodelling of the warehouse building and a 7,000-square-foot addition.


Patrick C. Hayes

AZRE Magazine Real Estate Development Awards

3900 E. Camelback Road #170, Phoenix, AZ 85018

About PHArchitecture

A local leader in sustainable, LEED design and cutting-edge, technology-based design practices, Patrick C. Hayes opened PHArchitecture in 1999 and has since designed many offices and corporate headquarters in Phoenix, as well as industrial, retail, and medical spaces across the valley. Hayes earned a bachelor’s degree in architecture from the University of Oregon and has been recognized as a leading designer with numerous awards, including AZRE Magazine Real Estate Development Awards for best office project, best redevelopment project, and several honors from the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties. He was also named an architect of the year by Arizona Business Magazine.

Featured Projects

PHArchitecture is one of several design firms in the Phoenix metro area that is helping to put Phoenix and the nearby college town of Tempe on the map of new tech start-up and creative-class hotspots. PhArchitecture designed one of Tempe’s most distinctive and talked-about office spaces in the GoDaddy Global Technology Center, a new site for the Scottsdale-based web-domain company. The 15k-square-foot, $27M complex houses about 1,100 employees. A playful, interesting, and fun workplace, the new GoDaddy offices have a yoga room; a game center; basketball, volleyball, and soccer spaces; a go-cart track; and even a slide that goes from the second floor offices to the kitchen. Near GoDaddy in the Arizona State University Research Park, PHArchitecture also designed a Tempe headquarters for Amkor Technology, a company that packages and tests semiconductors. The 101,949-square-foot, two-story office has a popular and innovative open concept for the company’s 350 employees.


John Tran

AIA APS Energy Award,
SRP Sustainable Award,
American Society of Landscape Architects Honor Award,
International Interior Design Association Pride Award

455 N. 3rd Street, Suite 250, Phoenix, AZ 85004

About SmithGroupJJR

A renowned international architecture and design firm with expertise in sustainable design, SmithGroupJJR has contributed greatly to Phoenix’s built environment, winning acclaim for diverse projects such as the Chandler City Hall, Gateway Community College’s Integrated Education Building, the Freeport-McMoRan Center downtown, and its work as design lead for exterior, lighting, landscape, and sustainability on the recent redevelopment of Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport Terminal 3. Brad Woodman leads the firm’s Phoenix office, and the design principal is John Tran.

Featured Projects

SmithGroupJJR’s Phoenix office designed a model of sustainable design with DPR Construction’s regional headquarters, a 16,533-square-foot, net-zero energy office in a once-dilapidated neighborhood. Originally a windowless old porn shop, the firm transformed the building into the first net-zero energy building in Arizona, and the largest net-zero energy building in the world. The stylish office has all kinds of up-to-the-minute green features, such as an 87-foot solar chimney that allows for passive cooling. The designers almost eliminated the need for artificial lighting with solar optical tubes, and the photovoltaic canopies in the parking lot provide shade for cars and power for the building. In this “workplace of the future,” sharing is paramount; there are no private offices, but there is a Zen room, a wine bar, and a relaxing courtyard with lots of cool greenery. The project won the AIA Western Mountain Distinguished Building Award, an award from the Sustainable Buildings Industry, an Energy Award from the AIA, and an Arizona Commercial Real Estate Award from AZRE Magazine. SmithGroupJJR’s Phoenix office also designed the a new Tempe office for the engineering company Southland Industries, a 10k-square-foot office complex with state-of-the-art working hubs to encourage sharing, along with writable surfaces, a spacious, open plan and artful wood, and glass throughout.

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