We work to realise both the spatial and civic opportunities that architecture presents.
Projects like the High Road Leyton, the Kings Cross Skip Garden and Blue House Yard are leaving a social and a physical legacy. We achieve this by embracing an open, interactive design process that responds positively to the needs and aspirations of the people we work with.
Through allowing the process to drive the project, we have built a portfolio of inventive projects, each of which makes the most of the unusual opportunities and particular challenges of its site context. Our method stimulates innovative design, and always seeks to add benefits through education, economic growth, cultural activity or greater community coherence.
We believe that an integrated approach is needed for any place to fulfil its potential. This conviction has led us to work across sectors, including regeneration, housing, economic development, education, public space and planning. In each field, our projects are united by their public purpose.
For us, sustainability is more than just a technological challenge. By engaging a broad community in frank and open conversation from the outset of a project, we can work to ensure that our proposals are needed, useful and proportionate. Throughout design, procurement and delivery, we look for opportunities to re-activate existing spaces, use reclaimed or surplus materials and tap into existing local supply networks.
Looking ahead, we are researching how the spaces we design and the strategies we develop can accommodate change, through flexible design strategies to demountable construction techniques. Sustainability must be a shared pursuit, and we hope to inspire others through our work.
The many national and international design awards that our projects have won validate our approach. We are aware that design excellence is a team effort and invest ourselves in our work and our professional relationships. We have ISO 9001 (Quality Assurance) and ISO 14001 (Environmental Management) certification which is independently verified annually. We are a London Living Wage employer.
Waltham Forest Design (Best Town Centre Project) 2014
Regeneration and Renewal (commendation) 2013
Dr Jan Kattein – Director
is a highly qualified designer with 16 years experience working on a range of projects at the intersection between architecture and the city. Before setting up his own studio he worked at Jestico + Whiles and Peter Barber Architects where he was project architect for the multiple award-winning Donnybrook housing project in Bow and the £20 Mio. Tanner Street Quarter in the Thames Gateway. Jan has extensive experience with public sector projects and fosters a number of long term working relationships with local authorities in London. He has worked with Camden since 2005 and has provided innovative space management training to more than 200 LA housing officers throughout London. A lot of the work at JKA is in the public domain and depends on stakeholder participation and buy-in. Jan Kattein has many years of experience in consulting and engaging stakeholders including residents, trader’s associations, vendors and Councillors. As director, Jan’s role is to build JKA’s network of partners and to steer the strategic direction of the company.
Jan was appointed lecturer in Architecture and Engagement at UCL in 2015. He lectures, exhibits and publishes worldwide. His book The Architecture Chronicle, Diary of an Architectural Practice was recently published byAshgate.
Gabriel Warshafsky – Director of Projects
is a qualified architect. He completed his degree at the Bartlett with first class honours and obtained his MArch with distinction. His colourful and innovative hybrid designs have seen him included on the Dean’s List for Academic Achievement on two occasions. Gabriel has worked in Canada, for Barkow Leibinger Architekten and Bundschuh Baumhauer Architekten in Berlin. At Edgley Design in London he had a leading role in design, design team co-ordination and project management of a number of ambitious residential projects on challenging urban sites. Gabriel’s individual approach and thorough understanding of the dynamics of the city make him a highly capable designer. As director of projects, Gabriel is responsible for organising how we deliver projects, ensuring.
Gareth Marriott – Director of Design
is a qualified architect. He completed his BArch degree at the University of Nottingham with first class honours, where he was awarded the degree prize for his portfolio, and was part of the construction team for the UK’s first entry to the European Solar Decathlon. Gareth completed his MArch at the Bartlett with distinction in both his design work and thesis. He previously worked for WCEC Architects in Sheffield, thereafter re-located to Tianjin, China where he was employed by Vision Ltd. to deliver a number of regeneration strategies, from a small fishing harbor in Sha Po Wei, to factory and mining districts in brownfield areas of Tianjin and Jixan. Gareth joined JKA in 2012. As director of design, he is responsible for organising design reviews and keeping everyone at JKA up-to-date with the latest design innovation.
Chrysanthe Staikopoulou – Director of Finance & Compliance
is an architect with a masters from both, the Bartlett, UCL and the Royal College of Art. She has worked on a variety of urban design and strategy projects as well as interior design commercial projects. While at East she worked on TFL’s Streetscape Guidance aiming to streamline urban design policies across London and was project running the Pride in Derwent Parade Project, where she designed bespoke lighting, seating paving and urban tree planting. She has commercial interior projects experience and has designed for Habitat and Fitness First while at Antarchitecture and for a Soho Post-production company while at Gregory Phillips Architects. Since graduating Chrysanthe has had teaching roles in Architecture and Interior Architecture at the University of Wesminster, the University of Greenwich as well as short courses at the Bartlett, UCL and the Architectural Association. As director of finance, Chrysanthe manages the financial side of the practice and she also ensures that we comply with our obligations under our ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 accreditation.
Felicity completed her Masters at the Bartlett with distinction. She explored the growth and ethnographical perspective of the urban realm with the aim of encouraging public events and facilitating the use of open spaces by diverse user groups. Intervening at different times of the day helped to periodically stimulate city life. To inform her thesis Felicity set-up an innovative enterprise, BIARCH – Building Image Architecture and hosted a spectacle. It defined her interest in the real undertaking of a plural experience as an extraordinary event, defined simply as an activity which leaves a lasting impression on its participants. She has represented England as the National Contact in the European Architecture Student Assembly, a network between young designers across Europe that convene annually into a temporary community. There co-designed and built pavilions with an ephemeral presence accross a number of sites. Previously she worked for Sam Jacob Studio in London, Kengo Kuma Associates in Tokyo & OMA in Rotterdam. After her degree at the University of Newcastle, she received nominations for both the RIBA Hadrian Medal and the RIBA President’s Bronze Medal.
studied at the National School of Architecture of la Villette in Paris and the Waterford Institute of Technology in Ireland. Her final year culminated in a collaborative project that re-defined administrative and physical boundaries along the river Seine in Paris. The student team worked closely with local communities including the ‘Bateliers’, the Paris’ riverboat operators to develop their project brief and to establish a dialogue between transient communities and administrative management. After graduating, Heloise participated in a number of self-built projects including the Bellastock Festival in Acheres and ScolarRom in Champs-Sur-Marne where she worked with traveller children to build a mobile knowledge exchange. Heloise has worked on a range of urban design and housing projects at Philipon Kalt Architects, BNR Architects abd ITAR Architects in Paris before coming to the UK. At JKA Heloise working on our Brick Lane and Harper Road town centre regeneration projects and proposals for a new community garden in King’s Cross.
Rose obtained her Masters from the Bartlett School of Architecture with Distinction in 2018. Her design project and dissertation are interested in public agency and community-led design processes for a new city in the Thames Estuary. In her work, contingency, adaptability and play take precedent over the rigid and permanent characteristics of the contemporary masterplanning process.
Before joining JKA, she worked at Hopkins Architects on a range of prestigious sports-, culture- and heritage projects in London and Norfolk. At JKA Rose is working on a meanwhile village project in Westminster and the transformation of a Victorian lavatory into creative makerspace in Tower Hamlets.
Kirsty was awarded a 1st class degree from the University of Brighton where she was nominated for the RIBA Bronze Medal and won the RIBA Eyeline Drawing Prize. She gained her Masters degree with distinction at the Bartlett, UCL where she was awarded the Bartlett medal for outstanding results. Her thesis was nominated for the RIBA Dissertation Prize. Kirsty exhibited at the 250 year anniversary exhibition at the Royal Academy in 2018.
Kirsty has over 3 years experience working in London on private homes, social housing, meanwhile projects and large infrastructure interventions, including the Rotherhithe Bridge pedestrian and cycle crossing. She also worked in Japan for Atelier Bow Wow and 403 architecture. Kirsty has taught at the Bartlett Summerschool and holds a part-time teaching position at Oxford Brookes. At JKA Kirsty has been working with Jan and Jack Sallabank on their upcoming book: “People Power Regeneration”, which will celebrate the people behind successful grassroots regeneration projects in London.
Corina studied at the Bartlett and at the CASS where she completed her professional masters with distinction in 2017. She won a scholarship to subsequently complete an MA by project working with young people on the design and implementation of a series of public realm improvements in Thamesmead. Corina has wide ranging experience running collaborative design and build workshops with communities. She has worked for Sharon Davies Design in New York where she lead on a project to expand a community hospital to provide sustainable rural healthcare. In London she has worked for Social Enterprise Wave Cafe to develop a brand identity with people with learning disabilities.
Corina has won the London Works design competition in 2017, the RIBA Eyeline drawing competition in 2016 and the Branding Lab High Street competition where she implemented her design in 2013. At JKA Corina has been working on the Whitecross Estate Regeneration project for Peabody, a series of high street regeneration projects throughout London and a meanwhile activation project for Lendlease.
Chandni graduated from the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL with a First Class Honours Degree in 2018. During her time at the Bartlett, Chandni acted as a mentor for 1st year students and as a design unit representative.
Her third year project was sited in Miami, and explored the duality of immigration through a 5-star hotel for Donald Trump. The project proposed building Trump’s ultimate franchise, subverting the perceived and real value of materials as a commentary on the grotesque and ostentatious Trump Empire.
Ersatz materials conveyed opulence but in fact conceal and disguise platforms for the staff to observe and ridicule guests. Ornamentation tells the story of Trump’s controversial past whilst fixtures and fittings play out a political parody on Trump’s polemic regime.
Before joining JKA, she worked at HK Architects in London where she designed workspaces in London and Birmingham.
Max was awarded a First Class Degree from Central St. Martins in 2019 for both his design work and his dissertation. In a nod to the seminal Ealing Broadway comedy ‘Passport to Pimlico’, Max’s final project proposes a semi-autonomous state for Rotherhithe in South London, reflecting critically on contemporary social- and territorial issues and land ownership.
Before studying architecture, Max completed a degree in Biological Sciences at Bristol University. Max has advanced understanding of environmental issues and eco systems. He is interested in craft and making and has undertaken previous professional work to fabricate and install large scale artwork, managing the associated creative as well as logistical challenges. He is a keen photographer with an eye for detail and is currently undertaking a self-driven project involving an in depth architectural and photographic analysis of London’s peripheral spaces.
Rachel Buckley, Alice Hardy, Harry Pizzey, Diogo Real, Anna Mill, Etta Watkins, Madiha Ahmed, Adam Shapland, Corina Tuna, Charlie Redman, Dan Lee, Josephine Callaghan, Rikard Kahn, Sinan Pirie, Tony Staples, Negin Ghorbani, Geraldine Holland
We regularly support community groups and charities who share our ethos. By donating our services through a fee-repayment scheme or by providing limited professional advice free of charge, we have found that we can act as enablers, helping organisations to access new funding streams, improve their offer or operation or make better use of under-used assets. In return, we expect full commitment to the project by senior management, adequate resourcing, a strong design agenda and a determination to see the project through to implementation.
In 2018 we have given design and project management time worth more than £20k and have helped to get 2 new projects off the ground. Organisations we are supporting in 2019 include Global Generation and Feeding Britain.
Applications for funding are considered by the directors on a case by case basis. Contact us for more details. Please also get in touch if you want to support our work. All of our partners are registered charities. Investing in them means that we can help to make your donation go further.