In its November 2017 issue, Architect Magazine names Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) the number one architectural firm on its Architect 50 list. In forming this year’s rankings, the magazine placed a high premium on a strong design portfolio, participation in the AIA’s 2030 Commitment program, and net revenue per employee. SOM is the only practice to place first overall twice since the ranking was founded in 2009. The firm was also ranked number one in 2010.
In the story that accompanies the ranking, the magazine wrote: “When it took top honors in 2010, SOM had recently completed Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, which remains (for now) the world’s tallest building. In 2016, the firm’s portfolio didn’t include a single supertall, but rather featured a diversity of completed projects.”
This year, “the design judges highlighted SOM’s ‘beautifully detailed public work’ with ‘sculptural surfaces and facades and structural forms,'” focusing on several key projects, such as the Public Safety Answering Center II in New York, the U.S. Air Force Academy Center for Character & Leadership Development in Colorado, and the United States Courthouse in Los Angeles. The magazine cited the LEED Platinum-certified courthouse as a prime example of “how SOM’s commitment to sustainability hasn’t undermined its pursuit of design excellence.”
“This is an extremely meaningful honor,” said T.J. Gottesdiener, Managing Partner at SOM. “It’s a testament to our constant evolution as a firm, our continued commitment to sustainability and design rigor, and the talent of our employees.”
The magazine called this edition of the Architect 50 “the most competitive yet” with entries from 149 firms – the most in recent memory.