After more than four decades of award-winning architectural design and client-oriented service, KA Architecture has achieved a national reputation for excellence and for creative building solutions that fulfill clients' goals. Established in 1960 by Keeva J. Kekst, the Cleveland-based firm is now in its second generation. It continues to uphold a national reputation and practice specializing in corporate and commercial real estate development in over 41 states and Puerto Rico.
The firm operates as three studios: the commercial real estate developer studio, the interior architecture studio and the master site planning/landscape architecture studio. All work together to provide an array of services including site planning, retail diagramming, architectural design, environmental graphics, interior design and landscape architecture.
The project featured above is the newly renovated 1.72 million-square-foot Hanes Mall in Winston-Salem, N.C. This property was bought by CBL & Associates Properties Inc. along with 20 other properties in the Richard Jacobs portfolio. “A big issue was style. CBL wanted the mall to look like other CBL malls, so KA and CBL went through the mall making a wish list of what needed to be changed,” says Darrell Pattison, director of design at KA Architecture.
One of the major challenges facing designers was that Hanes Mall was essentially split in two by a JC Penny store. This presented problems. First, one wing was about ten to 15 years older than the other. Second, most customers were not aware of the other wing, and “they would get to JC Penny and think they had reached the end of the mall,” says Pattison. KA successfully updated both wings and created a style that is congruent throughout. “A better signage and wayfinding program has helped encourage people to go through the JC Penny store and shop the rest of the mall,” adds Pattison.
While Hanes Mall has always been dominant in its market, KA Architecture's extensive renovation has certainly played a major role in the mall's recent increase in revenue and traffic.
Address: KA Architecture 1468 West 9th Street Cleveland, OH 44113
Size of Firm: 70
Year Established: 1960
Key Contacts: James B. Heller, President Darrell K. Pattison, CSO, Director of Design Thomas M. Milanich, COO David H. Bader, Director of Site