The practice is experienced in designing a wide range of building types including: office, residential, transport, education, culture, leisure, retail, civic and healthcare. The quality of its designs has been recognised with some of architecture’s highest awards, including two RIBA Stirling Prizes, one in 2006 for Terminal 4, Madrid Barajas Airport and the other in 2009 for Maggie’s West London Centre.
Since the early days of the Lloyd’s building in the 1970s the practice has produced innovative, beautiful, sustainable, and practical architecture which creatively solves problems for clients. A focus on providing flexible spaces separated from service elements means RSHP’s buildings are adaptable and resilient in a world where technology is changing rapidly.
A deep belief in the importance of sustainability has underscored the firm’s work since the early days, and recent projects such as the Centre Building at the London School of Economics, the New Cancer Centre at Guy’s Hospital, International Towers Sydney and the extension to the British Museum, exemplify this belief with a range of environmental features built into the fabric of the building.
RSHP’s design work is led from its studio in London, but staff work globally across projects, and project offices on the ground ensure that close attention to detail is maintained during the design process. In total, RSHP employs a little over 200 staff including specialist support teams who offer in-house graphic design, visualisation, film, and communications services.
The practice’s office is in the Leadenhall Building, and the choice of a completely open plan office reflects the democratic beliefs of the practice. There are no individual offices; partners sit with their architectural teams, and every Monday a weekly meeting open to all employees is held to discuss competitions, on-going projects and more. Staff wellbeing is important, with a conscious focus on providing good working conditions for staff and ensuring a family-friendly environment.
This collegiate approach extends to the wider world with a constitution that consciously brings a moral dimension to the work. This includes a staff profit-sharing scheme and significant contributions to charity, with staff members nominating the charities of their choice.
The firm was founded as the Richard Rogers Partnership in 1977 but over time evolved and in 2007 the decision was made to rename the firm Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners to reflect the vital contributions of Graham Stirk, designer of the iconic Leadenhall Building, and Ivan Harbour, designer of the Stirling prize winning West London Maggie’s Centre. The practice now has 13 partners, with several long-standing members of the practice being named partners in 2015. Together, they represent the inherent continuity and consistency of the philosophy which the practice applies to all its work.