BKP remembers founding principal Duncan Wray Buell

With Duncan Buell, AIA Emeritusgreat sadness, BKP announces the passing of founding partner and principal emeritus Duncan Wray Buell, AIA Emeritus, on April 24, 2015 at Bryn Mawr Extended Care Center in Bryn Mawr, Pa. Duncan left his mark on Philadelphia’s architecture community as a talented designer, a gifted artist, and a patient mentor. Duncan’s influence will forever permeate BKP’s design detailing, while his hand sketches and renderings hang as inspiration on the office walls. He leaves a legacy of innovative craftsmanship and timeless elegance.

Duncan was born in Rochester, N.Y., in 1928. He earned a Master of Architecture with honors from Yale University in 1953, where he studied under and established a long-term relationship with Louis I. Kahn. In 1960, Duncan moved to Philadelphia to work for Kahn as a trusted project architect, contributing to designs for the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California, and the National Assembly Buildings in Dhaka, Bangladesh. While working with Kahn, Duncan developed an appreciation for materials used in new or unexpected ways. He was later interviewed and appeared in the film, “My Architect,” Nathaniel Kahn’s 2003 movie exploring his father’s life and work.

After Kahn’s death in 1974, Duncan became a partner in Cope Linder Architects, where he met Darrell Kratzer, AIA, and worked on large-scale office, retail, and civic projects. With Cope Linder, Duncan designed the Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing and, as a consultant, Philadelphia’s Criminal Justice Center. During his long career, Duncan also worked for Vincent Kling, EwingCole, VITETTA, and Delle Donne.

In 1995, Duncan and Darrell established Buell-Kratzer Architects; one year later, they joined Joseph Powell, AIA, to form Buell Kratzer Powell Architects, Ltd.

Duncan leaves behind his wife of 62 years, Sally Lou Buell (nee Smith); four grandchildren: Mark, John, Jack, and Sarah; and two great-grandsons: Jaiden and Jase. He was preceded in death by his sons Ely and Gordon. A memorial service will be held at a later date.

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Kratzer and Daley author article in American School & University magazine


American School & University November 2014BKP Principal Darrell Kratzer, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, and senior designer/project manager Caitlin Daley co-authored a feature article for the November 2014 issue of American School & University magazine. “Fresh Fare” describes trends in higher education dining facilities, including choice-inspired floor plans, furnishings that put fresh food on display, natural materials, and an emphasis on healthy living. The article is illustrated with images of Johns Hopkins University’s Charles Street Market and the University of Pennsylvania’s Class of 1920 Dining Commons, two projects for which BKP incorporated ideas described in the text.

Click to read the article online at American School & University.


Venice Island Performing Arts and Recreation Center Opens

Venice Island Performing Arts & Recreation CenterOn Tuesday, 07 October 2014, BKP staff attended the grand opening of the Venice Island Performing Arts and Recreation Center, a 10-year collaboration with the City of Philadelphia Department of Parks & Recreation, Philadelphia Water Department, and Manayunk community. BKP provided architectural design for the new 10,000-sf performing arts and recreation center. The community center is one component of the $46 million project that includes a sophisticated storm water management program and a four-million-gallon underground storage tank.

“It will be a destination spot for a lot of people who have been wanting something new and different for the community.” – Mayor Michael Nutter

“This is certainly going to help with our creative economy. It is a smart project; a good, quality project.” – Councilman At-Large David Oh

“The theater component of the project . . . will provide the community with a stunning space for events and performances.” – James Jennings, Editor, Curbed Philadelphia

Click to read more about the Performing Arts Center:

Curbed PhiladelphiaMaple-Clad Venice Island Performing Arts Center Is Gorgeous

Click to watch video of the sustainable, community-focused project:

6ABC Philadelphia: Manayunk Gets $46-Million Makeover

Montgomery News Roxborough Review: Venice Island Officially Opens

Click to read more about the opening celebrations:

Philly.com: $46M Venice Island Makeover Debuts in Manyunk

Curbed Philadelphia: Venice Island Merges Utility, Creativity, and Entertainment

The Daily Pennsylvanian: A Recap in Photos: Venice Island Performing Arts and Recreation Center Opening

The Philadelphia Tribune: Officials Cut Ribbon for New Watershed Rec Center

Philadelphia Magazine Property: Venice Island is Reborn

Philadelphia Magazine Ticket: Venice Island Performing Arts and Recreation Center Grand Opening

Visit Philadelphia: Venice Island Performing Arts and Recreation Center

Joseph Powell and Cape May County Library Administrators Present at Conference

2014-bigstock-Library-53226526BKP Principal Joseph Powell, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, and Cape May County Library administrators co-presented “Renovation Realities: Best Practices to Achieve a Successful Library Renovation without Sacrificing Peace of Mind” at the Library Management Institute Summer Conference June 16 in Philadelphia. Powell was joined by AnnMarie McMahon, LEED AP BD+C, Facilities Director for Cape May County, N.J., and Deborah Poillon, MLS, Director of the Cape May County Library System.

The three shared their experiences and recommendations for completing a renovation with high quality design and satisfaction from both the community and library administration. During the highly participatory session, attendees and the presenters discussed how to overcome perceived hurdles with renovation projects, reviewed best practices in the art and science of library design, dispelled myths and fears about the construction process, and shared first-hand feedback from the Wildwood Crest Public Library project, including how specific challenges were overcome.

The Library Management Institute offers workshops and conferences for the library community with a special focus on the issues in library management and leadership.

Bryn Mawr College Dean’s Office Recognized by American School & University Magazine

121013.409American School & University magazine has selected Buell Kratzer Powell’s design for the Bryn Mawr College Dean’s Office to appear in the 2014 Educational Interiors Showcase. The project was recognized as an Outstanding Design for Administrative Areas/Offices. It was one of 86 award winners in the annual program that recognizes college and university planning and design projects across the U.S. Award winners will be recognized in the August 2014 issue of American School & University magazine.

The project transformed Eugenia Chase Guild Hall from a dark and underutilized data center into a light-filled hub of student and administrative activity. Click here to learn more about the project.

Click here to view the digital issue of the 2014 Educational Interiors Showcase.

This marks the third time in as many years that a BKP project has been recognized. In 2013, the University of Pennsylvania Class of 1920 Commons Dining renovation was featured, and in 2012, the Bryn Mawr College Bern Schwartz Gymnasium renovation was honored.