New Entry for Phillips Hall at UNC

New Entry Doors

New Entry Doors

Before new Entry Doors were added

Before new Entry Doors were added

The interior of this collegiate gothic building did not reflect its exterior appearance. Interior corridor ceilings are covered in conduit, mechanical systems and data runs. The front entry doors were not in character with the building, nor did they meet current egress requirements. We worked with the University and the Departments of Astronomy, Mathematics and Physics on improvements to the entry experience. We designed new front doors and interior designs were studied for various ways to mitigate the appearance of conduit and mechanical systems. New lighting and finishes highlight the departments and minimize the distractions from equipment that cannot be moved. The welcoming space accomodates the waves of student traffic that utilize the area between classes.

Completed 2018

Before Renovation

Before Renovation

After Renovation

After Renovation

BB&T's Former Corporate Headquaters to be Torn Down

We are very saddened to hear about BB&T’s plans to tear down their previous corporate headquarters designed by our founder B. Atwood Skinner.  We think it’s a huge loss for mid-century modernism in North Carolina.  It is as important to preserve our more recent heritage as it is to preserve that from the more distant past. 


Groundbreaking Celebration for Alston Ridge Middle School

IMG_4536Wake County Commissioners, Wake County School Board Members, Cary Town Council Members and many others braved the wet cold rain to celebrate the construction of WCPSS's latest Middle School Project located in western Cary, NC.  We are proud to be the architect for this exciting project and are looking forward to it's construction over the next year and a half.  The school features flexible collaborative areas, large windows for great views and daylighting, flexible courtyards for outdoor learning, and multiple colors of local brick.Courtyard-01_FotoSketcher

Exterior Restoration at St. Timothy's Episcopal Church has begun!

1231-elevThe brick re-pointing, roof repair and masonry restoration has begun at St. Timothy's Episcopal Church in Wilson, NC.  St. Timothy's was constructed in 1906 and is a fine example of Gothic Revival architecture with it's asymmetrical brick tower and Tudor Gothic windows.  We designed a new cast stone cross with symbol for St. Timothy to be located above the main entry.


Middle School Prototype for Wake County

Built 3 times between 2009 & 2012, this 196,000 SF middle school prototype has been designed with a compact footprint and can be flexibly oriented depending on varying site conditions. It has also been designed with sustainability in mind. All classrooms are located around the building’s perimeter and large windows are placed to take advantage of natural day lighting. 1029PLAN-200 copySouth facing glass is shaded and light shelves direct sun’s rays deep into classroom spaces. Energy efficient electrical and mechanical systems reduce energy costs. The exterior is a combination of local North Carolina brick and light weight steel panels which are made from 27% recycled content. Using the light weight metal panels above roofs and high on the buildings elevations reduces the chance for roof membrane damage during construction and has the added benefit of reducing the quantity of structural steel required to support the building’s skin, reducing use of natural resources and saving tax payer dollars.

Lumion...test driving some new rendering software

We have used a great number of rendering packages including Podium, 3Ds Max, Revit and now Lumion.  With just a few hours of testing we have gotten some really nice results and are excited about the video capabilities.  Also, the interface is really simple and intuitive.  We will update after more


work time.  PS: I really want to build this church, so if anyone is interested, please call us. :) 

Harnett County Courthouse

We recently returned to Harnett County to photograph the courthouse and are happy to see that it is holding up well after 15 years of service.

Few North Carolina counties have had the opportunity to construct a new courthouse on a new site.  The challenge of this project was to provide space for the clerk of court, district attorney, tax office, register of deeds, and courtrooms in a single building that would make an appropriate aesthetic statement, be affordable and be secure. The result was a new 130,561 SF building that meets all of these parameters. The layout of the courtrooms in this building carefully separate the jury, judges, attorneys, detainees, and public in a way that is unseen to the users. The design committee included representatives of all departments that would occupy the building. As designers, we guided those representatives to work cooperatively in helping us understand their needs. We offered many alternative solutions to the group and patiently built a consensus with all parties. The final product has been embraced by the citizens of Harnett County and enjoyed by those who use the building.

Alston Ridge Middle School

1262-01 Alston Ridge Middle School is the first build of a revised middle school prototype to be constructed in Cary, NC. This design features small learning communities centered around flexible collaborative space.  Included in the program is a dedicated theater for 525 students.  Good sight lines are achieved with a sloping floor and angled seating and acoustics are enhanced with sloped ceiling clouds and angled walls in addition to carefully placed acoustical panels.  The theater will be an important piece of the arts education program at Alston Ridge MS.  The 210,000SF school is designed for 1,311 students (traditional calendar) with 82 teaching spaces and includes a full-sized gym as well as a 2nd auxiliary gym.  Security features include clear circulation pathways with excellent visibility, vice-principal’s offices distributed on each floor level, and a main entry vestibule with bullet resistant glass, passing through the administrative area.  The classroom wing is oriented to face North & South to take advantage of the most consistent natural light and reduce energy usage.  The footprint is compact for a school of this size which will allow WCPSS to be able to fit the prototype on smaller sites in a county that is land starved due to its rapid growth.

Wilson Community Health Center wins Design Award from American Institute of Architects-NC Eastern Section

Wilson Community Health Center, designed by Skinner Lamm & Highsmith Architects has won a Design Award in the Service Category from American Institute of Architects-NC Eastern Section.  "This modest yet iconic building provides critical health services to three counties.  It considers the existing context and accommodates the growing spacial needs of the existing facility." Jury comments from 2016 AIA NC Eastern Section Service Awards

The clinic’s success facilitated the need to expand.  More parking, a covered drop-off, additional office space, a larger pharmacy, and a more spacious waiting room were needed.  We maintained the design attributes of the original structure including the playful placement of punched openings, use of scored block and metal panels.  Utilizing additional properties adjacent to the original clinic, the main entrance was relocated to the new building where parking was also added.  The building angles in deference to the main train line that separates downtown Wilson from the residential area to the East allowing maximum space for parking.


We designed the original Wilson Community Health Center clinic building that was completed in 2005.  This facility won a merit award from the Eastern Section of the NCAIA in 2006. The current project for the addition and renovation was completed in 2015.  The finished facility is 31,461 SF with 17,775 SF being new construction.  The 2005 clinic building was also renovated (4,523 SF).


This building had to be designed in a way that allows full use of the facility during construction of the new building.  Careful site placement and building configuration facilitate a functional flow of patients as well as security for staff.  The pharmacy is strategically placed to allow it to function independently for staff and very conveniently for patients.

The new 2-story addition is constructed from load bearing masonry walls with bar joists supporting a concrete deck.  The rooftop mechanical unit is concealed from view by an extension of the metal panels.  The connection between existing and new construction was kept small to minimized shoring of the existing structure.

The site is located at a junction between a residential district where many of the clinics patrons reside and Wilson’s downtown /warehouse district.  It is surrounded by urban streets on all 4 sides and is bounded by the main rail line to the southeast.  The train station is located to the south of the site and to the north is the Old Wilson Historic District.


Sustainable features include locating the building on a dense urban site that was previously developed and is very well connected to the community that it serves by walking, bicycling, and public transportation.  The site features water efficient landscaping and the impervious area was actually decreased with the addition.  Windows provide natural light and views while an energy efficient mechanical and lighting system were employed.  A large portion of the exterior is covered with metal panels that have a very high recycled content.

Revolutions in Learning - A4LE Conference in Philadelphia, PA

conference-header2 David Henebry, AIA, ALEP attended the A4LE Annual Conference in Philadelphia from Sept 28-Oct 1, 2016. The conference was titled “Revolutions in Learning”. While there David was able to meet some of the finalists for the MacConnell Award. After spending substantial hours as a juror reviewing the great submissions, he was interested to hear the Architects talk about their projects. The finalists included Robert R. Shaw Center for S.T.E.A.M by Stantec, Cherry Crest Elementary by NAC and the winning submission Fairchild High School by JCJ Architecture. The community commitment to construct a pure project based lab school in the center of their community to be accessible by all of the schools in the Katy Texas school District was extremely impressive. The students arrive early and have to be chased out in the late evening 7 days a week, demonstrating student engagement at levels most communities would envy. The Cherry Crest Elementary in Bellevue Washington captured the spirit of the natural surroundings and has taken outdoor learning to new levels. The interplay and connectivity to the outdoors along with the project based learning studios on the interior of the school provide for very pleasant and engaged learning. Cherry Crest also did an exceptional job of integrating solar and other green features into the building as teaching opportunities. The MacConnell Award winner is a great community story. It was a 10-year journey for a new High School in the poorest district in Connecticut. The STEM High School has 3 themed academy learning communities. Information Technology and Software Engineering, Biotechnology Research and Zoological Sciences and Aerospace/Hydrospace Engineering and Physical Sciences comprise 3 distinct academies of choice for students. The students are also allowed to switch academies. The 3 academies are broken up into 6 collaborative/flexible learning suites. Along with using the outdoor wooded area as a natural learning lab they maintain a bee hive on the green roofs. Of all of the sustainable features are integrated into the curriculum. They have both solar and wind green power features integrated and expressed in the architecture. Though the most impressive statistic was improving the graduation rate from 65% - 98%!

We're all together in Raleigh now!

301 Glenwood Ave We have consolidated our offices to our Raleigh location at 301 Glenwood Avenue! Since opening our Raleigh office in 2007 we have worked very closely with everyone in our Wilson office.  Now that we are all under one roof, we are enjoying the face to face collaboration and comradery.  We anticipate the consolidation will allow us to serve our clients even better than before!

Please note we have a new phone number.

301 Glenwood Avenue, Suite 270 Raleigh, NC 27603 984-222-0572 F  919-863-9980