5 questions with Matt King
BY JOHN STANCAVAGE World Business Editor
Friday, August 31, 2012
8/31/12 at 4:07 AM
Matt King is principal of King Architectural Solutions PLLC. His experience includes a former partnership with Kinslow, Keith and Todd; he also served as director of architecture for Tanner Consulting and held senior positions with Sparks & McFarland Architects. King has worked on projects for St. Francis Health System, Hillcrest Medical Center, Jane Phillips Medical Center in Bartlesville, McCurtain Memorial Hospital in Idabel, the Oklahoma Aquarium, Union Public Schools' UMAC, Junior Achievement/Biz Town, Sigma Chi Fraternity at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Lafayette Square in St. Louis and Radcliffe Quadrangle at Harvard University in Boston. He is a member of the Tulsa Preservation Commission.
1:You’ve worked for various architectural
firms and now are starting your own. What prompted that decision, and what
will your focus be?
It’s probably every architect’s
goal to achieve ownership at some
point in their career; ownership allows
more control over the building
design process and outcome. The
design of a building or development
of a site is very subjective, and all
architects have different perspectives
on design solutions.
Although I’ve worked on just
about every type of architectural
project out there, my focus over the
last 16 years has been on healthcare-
related facilities. King Architectural
Solutions will allow me
to continue to serve health-care
clients, and will also allow me to
pursue passion projects I’ve always
2: Adaptive reuse is a trend you support.
Can you explain this concept?
Adaptive reuse is simply the
repurpose of an existing building.
An architect can give new
lift to historic buildings rich in
character, texture and scale. These
buildings are typically in denser
areas of town and are conducive to
pedestrian traffic; Brookside and
Cherry Street, like the Brady and
Blue Dome districts, were designed
specifically for pedestrians.
3: What are the other ways architects are
promoting “green” these days?
“Green” is defined by terms
such as sustainability, lean, LEED,
conservation, geothermal and perhaps
the most commonly known:
Today’s architects are designing
buildings to be much more efficient
relative to energy consumption and
healthier relative to the impact they
have on their occupants.
The reuse of existing buildings is
perhaps the best example of green,
since it eliminates waste that would
otherwise go to the landfill, and
much less energy is expended in
producing and transporting building
The green movement is being led
by the Unites States Green Building
Council and orchestrated through
a program called Leadership in
Energy and Environmental Design
or LEED. Many buildings are now
being designed to LEED standards.
4: What project in your career are you
most proud of? Do you have a dream
assignment you’d like to tackle?
The project I am most proud of
is, in fact, not a completed building,
but rather a master plan for an
existing three level, 111-bed hospital
facility. The challenge was to take
the outdated facility built in 1972
and upgrade it to meet current
building codes and state health
regulations, and update the finishes
— all while the facility remained
My dream assignment would be
to be the lead designer in developing
a master plan and subsequent
construction documents for a new
university, health-care campus or
mix-use development in an historic
urban environment. The juxtaposition
of integrating new structures
into an existing historic fabric has
always been a passion of mine.
5:What are the career prospects in your
profession these days? What advice do
you have for young architects?
The career prospects in architecture
will always be tied to the
economy and global trends.
Most architecture firms in the
United States are small and practice
locally, but more firms are starting
to pursue international work to
overcome a slow economy at home
and to capitalize on the expansion
of global markets.
The main advice I can offer to
young architects is to never give
up on your creative vision, but to
balance your vision with the reality
of client’s expectations. There is
no shortage of great ideas among
young architects, but it is important
to understand what an idea costs.
Beautiful pieces of architecture
don’t necessarily have to be the
result of a generous budget, but
simply from an idea that is consistently
carried through the entire
TOM GILBERT/Tulsa World