We Are Hiring! by Judy Dixon

“Modern design that pursues better spaces for living and doing business.”  

Rush Dixon Architects is a small, full service architectural firm located in Mount Pleasant, SC currently seeking to add Intern Architects to our team.  We have some fantastic clients, a great small firm culture and love what we do. Our project types include commercial, residential, recreation and hospitality within the metro area of Charleston, SC.

This role is for motivated, creative and technical individuals who want to be involved in all project phases from Conceptual Design through Construction Administration. Exemplary communication, modeling / drafting and rendering skills required. 

Please list all relevant skills and previous work experience in your response and forward cover letter, resume, references and work examples to Judy Dixon at judy@rushdixon.com.

 

One80 Place Family Center Expands by Judy Dixon

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We were humbled to be a small part of the next chapter for Charleston's homeless shelter, One80 Place, as they increased the number of beds available to veterans, women and children and in their downtown Charleston Family Center.  There was more permitting assistance than architecture in this effort for us, which began in the fall.  Donations from SCE&G, Mount Pleasant Presbyterian Church, First Citizens and private citizens combined to create 22 additional beds, expanded restrooms and gathering space for adults and children. 

Instead of being evaluated by the buildings we build, City of Charleston's Mayor John Tecklenburg suggested “I believe we are judged … by how we treat those in our community most in need,” he said. “The mission here … is to empower people to get back in the mainstream of being able to provide for themselves.”  

Click here for the full Post & Courier article on the dedication of the new Family Center.  To support One80 Place, please check on their website or Facebook page (One-Eighty Place) for opportunities ranging from monetary donations, volunteering, providing "Need of the Week" items and advocacy. 

Rainbow Row | 107 E. Bay St. Renovation [Part 1] by Judy Dixon

The 1884 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map shows the original 13 structures currently referred to as Rainbow Row along E. Bay St. at the top left corner of the map running from Elliot St. to Tradd St. 

The 1884 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map shows the original 13 structures currently referred to as Rainbow Row along E. Bay St. at the top left corner of the map running from Elliot St. to Tradd St. 

As young architecture students exploring the streets of Charleston, sketch books and (SLR) cameras in hand, Rush and I knew we were walking on hallowed architectural ground. Charleston's best of times and worst of times were visible in her historic structures - some preserved as museums, some renovated for current day functions, and the less lucky, waiting for their day of restoration.  It was, therefore, a humbling moment when one of our wonderful clients asked for our assistance with a renovation to 107 E. Bay Street, one of the 13 historic and connected structures, currently known as Rainbow Row. 

"Excellent examples of early-eighteen-century wharfside construction, the dwellings along East Bay Street provide insight into the mercantile life of Charleston." [Jonathan Poston, The Buildings of Charleston] 

Originally designed and built as stores on the ground level and merchant's living quarters above, these buildings served Charleston's port and directly fronted the Cooper River. (The water's edge at this part of town has since shifted away.) As row houses, they mostly share a party wall in between houses with private access to the residences from the rear alley. Subsequent fires, the effects of the Civil War and the earthquake in 1886, all gave these buildings scars, dark chapters and in some instances a complete rebuild. 

The buildings from 79 - 107 East Bay Street were originally designed as shops on the ground floor and residences above. 

The buildings from 79 - 107 East Bay Street were originally designed as shops on the ground floor and residences above. 

107 East Bay is located at the corner of East Bay and Elliot St. and is the start of the 13 attached structures that is now called, "Rainbow Row"

107 East Bay is located at the corner of East Bay and Elliot St. and is the start of the 13 attached structures that is now called, "Rainbow Row"

"In the pre-Revolutionary period this was the site of George Flagg's paint shop, which stocked pigment and oils for the painting of Charleston's houses. After the structure was destroyed in the fire of 1778, Flagg sold the empty lot in 1791 to John Blake." [Jonathan Poston, The Buildings of Charleston] As evidenced in the photo comparison, the building was once had a hipped roof which was altered to have a gable parapet wall. Alterations through the decades are common place as buildings undergo repairs, adapt to new families and functions.  

The entire Rush Dixon Architects studio is humbled to be a part of the team for this next generation of 107 E. Bay which includes the very talented design and construction stewards, Brett Elrod (C. B. Elrod Construction) and Cortney Bishop (Courtney Bishop Design). We look forward to updating you on construction and design progress. 

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1 Elliot St is a brick out-building associated with the property. 

1 Elliot St is a brick out-building associated with the property. 

533 Rutledge Ave. Interior Renovation by Judy Dixon

Rush Dixon Architects is a solutions-based, contemporary architecture and design firm. Results driven, we create value for our clients through designs that are both strategic and artful, always keeping client goals at the forefront. We believe that modern design is not found solely in the materials, but rather through the pursuit of better spaces for living and doing business.  It is truly a privilege to be a small part of someone's incredible journey. In this case it was the accounting rockstars (yes, that's a thing) at Accountfully, a fully outsourced, modern accounting firm in Charleston, SC that focuses on entrepreneurs, small businesses and start-ups.

Creating a fresh and welcoming place for clients and staff was a high priority for our clients; special attention was given to the beverage bar and meeting space. [Photo: Leslie Ryan]

Creating a fresh and welcoming place for clients and staff was a high priority for our clients; special attention was given to the beverage bar and meeting space. [Photo: Leslie Ryan]

They out-grew their current office space and were in the process of purchasing 533 Rutledge Ave. for their new headquarters when we first met owners, Meredith and Brad Ebenhoeh.  Our scope included reimagining the existing first floor layout for optimum operational flow, function and brand alignment as well as assembling a Permit Set of documents for the City of Charleston to review and approve prior to construction. The exercise of taking this historic gem and ensuring a relevant, future chapter  is one of the best things about being an architect in Charleston - designing how modern and current functions can exist and thrive within historic walls. 

The collaboration that followed yielded a work environment tailored to how Accountfully functions: a beverage bar for both staff and clients as a welcoming feature, the generous meeting space, a mix of private offices and open work spaces.  The impeccable taste and instincts of our clients perfectly captured the Accountfully brand. 

“Rush Dixon Architects was a dream to work with on our downtown commercial renovation. As timing was of the essence, we needed to move quickly and they delivered! Their communication was impeccable and deliverables were high quality. Their knowledge and experience of working with the city was very helpful in keeping our project on track. More than that, Rush and Judy are incredibly sweet and down to earth. We are now happy to call them friends."  Meredith Ebenhoeh, Accountfully

The interiors were curated by Accountfully's impeccable taste and brand alignment. Current, modern, approachable. [Photo Leslie Ryan]

The interiors were curated by Accountfully's impeccable taste and brand alignment. Current, modern, approachable. [Photo Leslie Ryan]

Private offices with internal glazing were incorporated to allow for the necessary function of privacy and security while providing a visual connection to staff. [Photo Leslie Ryan] 

Private offices with internal glazing were incorporated to allow for the necessary function of privacy and security while providing a visual connection to staff. [Photo Leslie Ryan] 

Light-filled and dynamic, the open work space also known as the "bull pen" is a critical function to the daily office operations for Accountfully.  [Photo: Leslie Ryan]

Light-filled and dynamic, the open work space also known as the "bull pen" is a critical function to the daily office operations for Accountfully.  [Photo: Leslie Ryan]

 [Photo: Leslie Ryan]

 [Photo: Leslie Ryan]

The first floor of this century old structure at the corner of Rutledge and Fishburne avenues in downtown Charleston is the quintessential corner "store" and current home to Accountfully, a modern accounting firm focusing on entrepreneurs, small businesses and start-ups. Contact them at hello@accountfully.com

The first floor of this century old structure at the corner of Rutledge and Fishburne avenues in downtown Charleston is the quintessential corner "store" and current home to Accountfully, a modern accounting firm focusing on entrepreneurs, small businesses and start-ups. Contact them at hello@accountfully.com

22 years in Charleston | An Ode to Clark + Menefe by Judy Dixon

Today is Rush and Judy Dixon's "Relocating to Charleston" anniversary and Clark + Menefee (a brilliant but now disbanded architecture firm) is, by and large, to thank. The makings of this inspired chapter of two interns coming to this magnetic city started with a third year assignment at Virginia Tech's College of Architecture and Urban Studies. We were to visit an off-campus piece of architecture, study/sketch/photograph the building's merits and report back to the studio. The Middleton Inn was chosen, which at the time had recently been completed, garnering press and design awards. It was liberating to read how an inn just steps from The Middleton Plantation was boldly modern yet rooted in historic and local contexts. The stucco walls, the chimney pots, the "Charleston Green" paint, wood shutters, the rigor of the floor plan and detailing of the guest rooms are still humbling after all years. 

 

“We saw it as a chance to prove that modernism didn’t have to be strident or out of place, so we took careful pains to have that reflect touches of Charleston tradition,” Clark says.
[from Robert Behre's Post + Courier article in 2011 as the building turned 25 years old.] 

That visit securely planted the Charleston seed. Future excursions showed us the charm of the historic city, its cosmopolitan and European soul, and the reality of how an historic city can be relevant in a modern world. Happy Anniversary indeed.

Cline + McKenzie by Judy Dixon

Marcus Lemonis, our current entrepreneurial crush and CNBC's "The Profit", talks about the 3 Ps of business success: People, Product and Process. He emphasizes that "People" is the most important and as collaborators we couldn't agree more.  The dynamic in a design studio is especially important with all experience levels and perspectives working toward the best design solution each day.  We are delighted to have added two recent (and awesome) Clemson architecture graduates to our studio - Brett Cline and Tyler McKenzie.   Both interns bring their passion for architecture, design talent and technological skill set to the studio and assist with design, construction documents and renderings for both commercial and residential projects.  

Brett Cline recently earned his Bachelors of Arts in Architecture degree with a minor in Athletic Leadership from Clemson University.

Brett Cline recently earned his Bachelors of Arts in Architecture degree with a minor in Athletic Leadership from Clemson University.

 Tyler McKenzie has a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture with a minor in Package Design from Clemson University.

 Tyler McKenzie has a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture with a minor in Package Design from Clemson University.

The Beauty of Rules by Judy Dixon

As architects our mission is to create beautiful, functional structures for our clients - architecture that contributes to the built environment of its place, walls and roofs that keep water out and conditioned air in, volumes and spaces where life can not only happen but be better than before. It's an going balance between art and rules.

"I think constraints are very important. They're positive because they allow you to work off something." Charles Gwathmey, Gwathmey Seigel Kaufman Architects

We had the opportunity to think about everyday constraints today (and every day actually) - building codes, zoning codes and flood plains at the Town of Mount Pleasant's "Code for Lunch" series hosted by the town's Planning and Building Departments.  It may sound less than inspiring, but to us if you don't know the constraints you cannot be a relevant architect.  Here are some items discussed today. Any questions, send us a message and we'll be happy to follow up.  

SC TO ADOPT NEW BUILDING CODES

The State of South Carolina is on track to adopt the 2015 International Code Series on July 1, 2016. (We are currently under the 2012 International Code series.) This likely means that any projects close to drawings completion should be submitted to the authority having jurisdiction (unless you would like to transfer to the new code.)  [Reference International Code Council]

FLOOD MAP UPDATE

We may not have snow here in Charleston, but we sure do have flooding. As anticipated (feared) the flood maps are on track to be updated in less than two years. This can have impacts on insurance, new construction, etc. [Reference Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA] 

TREE PROTECTION

While there are no new regulations on tree protection, the proper way to execute protection was reviewed. This is an area that has many infractions which could lead to Stop-Work orders so make sure this is cone properly for a smoother inspection process. [Reference Town of Mount Pleasant Tree Ordinance]

PENDING ZONING CODE CHANGE

The building setbacks for Accessory Dwelling Units is slated to be increased at an upcoming Town Council meeting. Check the Town of Mount Pleasant website for updates to the Zoning Code. [Reference the Town of Mount Pleasant Zoning Ordinance]