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New Orleans’ retail sector greatly contributes to Louisiana’s business economy. In 2020, more than 705,000 jobs served this industry, having a $47.5 billion impact on the state’s gross domestic product (GDP). The retail industry includes a number of establishments including shops, restaurants, bars, and malls. With new retail spaces, more investors and developers are looking into New Orleans’ business growth. 

The city is thriving, with the presence of both global and local brands. When designing retail projects, there are numerous architects businesses should consider. Take a look at our top ten architects in the city. Each designer was ranked based on a number of criteria including work history, client satisfaction, design style, quality of structures, and recognition from various industry award organizations. Whether you want to update your shop or invest in a new business, there’s an architect on this list who can meet your needs.


 

Rozas Ward Architects

1100 Poydras St. Suite #3550, New Orleans, LA 70163 

Rozas Ward Architects is a New Orleans-based firm founded by Darren Rozas, AIA and Charles Ward, NCARB in 1991. The duo has more than 50 combined years of industry experience. Both leaders are committed to creating client-focused designs that incorporate sustainable and timeless architecture. Through the firm’s high-quality service and commitment to excellence, it has been recognized as one of the most sophisticated firms in the city.  

Adolph Williams Development is one of the firm’s many commercial projects that entails an aesthetically appealing exterior. The project involved designing the shell of the restaurant and retailing strip mall, while working a pre-existing bank and drive-through ATM into the design. In addition to the primary structure, the firm was tasked with designing customer and employee parking, as well as other external necessities such as space for trash dumpsters and maintenance facilities. 

No matter the scope of a project, Rozas Ward Architects provides quality architecture, interior design, and planning services with expert detail and intricacy. 


studioWTA

1119 Tchoupitoulas St., New Orleans, LA 70130 

Founded in 1992 by celebrated architect Wayne Troyer, studioWTA is a full-service architectural firm with expertise in creating sustainable designs, planning, and interior designs through building information modeling (BIM) structure. Since Troyer’s passing in 2019, the firm is led by Tracie Ashe, AIA, an architect with a diverse and rich background in architecture and design who has been mentored by Troyer since graduating from Tulane University in 2002. Joining her is Julie A. Babin, AIA and LEED Accredited Professional whose works have been recognized with press features and the prestigious John W. Lawrence Memorial Medal for Design Excellence. Troyer believed architecture is a process of communication within a framework of collaboration and exploration. This mindset lives on and has been studioWTA’s influence in creating its award-winning and acclaimed projects.

The firm completed a 7,756-square-foot project in the historic Freret Street neighborhood in collaboration with Andrew Jacobs of Freret Development LLC. To ensure it complemented its context, studioWTA took into consideration all construction materials for the two commercial buildings that house restaurants, a clothing store, and an apartment. The one- and two-story buildings offer a modern twist, and they were built in accordance with city regulations regarding onsite stormwater management. The firm’s works have been featured in several publications including Dwell, New Orleans Advocate, Architectural Digest, and Architect’s Newspaper


VergesRome Architects

320 N Carrollton Ave. Suite #100, New Orleans, LA 70119 

VergesRome Architects was founded by Steven Rome, AIA and Ernest Verges, AIA in 1963. Both architects possess extensive experience and knowledge in their field. The firm’s success is shared by its skilled team of established architects, design professionals, interior designers, and administration. During the last five years, the firm has been recognized with various awards from the American Institute of Architects (AIA), U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), Louisiana Landmarks Society, IIDA (the commercial interior design association), and more. Additionally, publications such as Architectural Record, New Orleans City Business, and Curbed New Orleans have featured the firm.

VergesRome Architects caters to a diverse range of projects for the city’s leading markets including retail, healthcare, commercial, cultural, financial, and residential. One of its more stunning projects is the Veterans Boulevard suburban retail center. The firm designed the buildings to be a retail and dining destination, created on a former car dealership site. It is home to nationally known tenants Bonefish Grill, Panera Bread, and Pei Wei. 


Adamick Architecture

1139 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd., New Orleans, LA 70113

Adamick Architecture, based in the historic Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard corridor, serves the Greater New Orleans and Gulf Coast Region with architecture and historic preservation works. Founder Alec Adamick, AIA, NCARB, graduated from Tulane University and then earned his masters from the Boston Architectural College. In addition to his dedication to client satisfaction, Adamick also provides pro-bono design services to local organizations via Open Architecture New Orleans. Joining Adamick are three well-versed architects: Katelynn Taylor, Cassidy Self, and Alex Barthel.

Canal Street Retail Store

Since its inception in 2014, the firm has completed numerous residential and commercial projects with forward-thinking designs. Adamick Architecture collaborated with the corporate design team for Athlete’s Foot to create the brand’s retail flagship store on Canal Street. The firm worked with the Historic District Landmarks Commission to approve the installation of the new storefront system within the historic Canal Street District. The retail store features a customized New Orleans interior including original cast-iron columns, exposed brick walls, high-end finishes, and custom product displays.


Albert Architecture

3221 Tulane Ave., New Orleans, LA 70119 

Delivering the highest quality of service and architectural design has built Albert Architecture’s blue-ribbon reputation since its inception in 2001. The firm is under the leadership of Richard Albert, a registered architect, AIA, and NCARB member. Albert and his team of adept architects continue to create impeccable designs for New Orleans’ leading industry markets. Albert Architecture has worked with a number of prestigious clients including the United States Air Force, Uber, Sterling Properties, U.S. Department of Defense, New Orleans Lakefront Airport, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Tulane University. 

Aside from its numerous works in Louisiana, the firm’s designs can be seen adorning Alabama, Texas, Virginia, Mississippi, Tennessee, and Florida. One of its award-winning projects is the Discoveries Furniture & Finds located at 2850 Magazine Street. The warehouse consists of 5,000 square feet of retail space dedicated to unique and rustic pieces of furniture. Albert Architecture provided renovation design to turn the warehouse into a light-filled space fit for the bustling Magazine Street. It was the recipient of the Garden District Association Renovator Award. 


CIS Architects

3129 edenborn Ave., Metairie, LA 70002 

Since 1990, CIS Architects has been redefining the architecture and design of residential and commercial spaces throughout Louisiana. Founder and Principal Charles Silbernagel brings more than three decades of design expertise to the firm. Throughout his career,  Silbernagel has acquired a deep understanding of the industry and has built his prime reputation with residential and commercial design. The firm specializes in architecture, interior design, and historic preservation.

The firm’s portfolio is filled with stunning projects in a variety of sectors. One of CIS Architects’ expansive retail projects includes the Old Metairie Plaza. The firm took inspiration from Metairie Road’s existing landscape to seamlessly fit the new project’s aesthetics. The commercial development totals 13,000 square feet for retail shops, restaurants, and office space. 


M2 Studio

1200 Annunciation St., New Orleans, LA 70130 

M2 Studio focuses on progressive and modern architecture and interior design that inspires people. M2 Studio is founded and owned by Charles Neyre, AIA, NCARB, and LEED Accredited Professional. Neyrey has more than two decades of architecture experience. He graduated from Louisiana State University and began to build his portfolio designing a wide variety of projects including multifamily homes, as well as educational, healthcare, hospitality, and office buildings. 

M2 Studio uses a cutting-edge BIM 3D design software, enabling the firm to enhance schematic design quality while reducing construction document time and conflicts. M2 Studio’s works have appeared in Canal Street Beat, Curbed New Orleans, New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles, and Uptown Messenger. One of its retail projects is the Raw Republic juice bar and plant-based foods. It features modern aesthetic, keeping lines clean and a white interior to bounce natural light. 


Manning Architecture Interiors Planning

650 Poydras St. Suite #1250, New Orleans, LA 70130 

Manning Architecture Interiors Planning is an Architecture, Interior Design and Planning firm and is one of New Orleans’ most trusted firms with more than three decades of architectural acumen. It all started in 1985 with Wm. Raymond Manning who was elevated to Fellow for the AIA as well as a LEED accredited professional. He established the firm and has creatively achieved award-winning projects locally and nationally. The firm is comprised of Licensed and LEED Accredited Professionals specializing in architecture, interior design, and planning. The firm is licensed and certified to perform architectural services in 21 U.S. states, as well as Puerto Rico.

The Fulton Street Pedestrian Mall is one of Manning’s expansive projects in the hospitality and retail markets. In line with a new hotel within the historic urban fabric of the Central Business District, the firm was tasked to design a pedestrian streetscape including an entrance facing the casino across Poydras Street, sidewalk dining for tenant food and beverage outlets, and an entrance linking the Harrah’s Hotel lobby with the Harrah’s garage and casino hotel. Manning architecture provided careful architecture and planning for the completion of this project.


Mouton Long Turner Architects

601 Papworth Ave. Suite #200, Metairie, LA 70005 

Providing exceptional designs locally and nationally has been Mouton Long Turner Architects’ commitment since day one. Thirty years later, the firm is still going strong, designing a diverse array of projects for its clients around the U.S. including Audi, Fat Tuesday Daiquiris, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Inspire Brands and Café Du Monde. Ralph Long and Jerome Mouton founded the firm as Mouton + Long Architects and later renamed it to Mouton Long Turner Architects when Bert Turner joined the team.

The team enjoys collaborating with its clients and sub-consultants to achieve quality designs. Mouton Long Turner Architects recently completed the flagship location of Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers in Louisiana. The firm collaborated with Retailworks Inc to complete the 8,000-square-foot project. The challenge of the project included a transformation of a former restaurant occupancy into a sophisticated store for Ramsey’s precious stones. Through careful planning and clear communication, the team was able to balance the corporate and retail aspects of the space, making its future transactions as seamless as possible.

For more information, you may visit their website here.


NANO

432 N Anthony St. Suite #303, New Orleans, LA 70119 

Terri Hogan Dreyer and Ian Dreyer are the founding partners who spearheaded NANO’s award-winning and celebrated designs. Terri graduated with a Master in Architecture from Tulane University with an undergraduate from Louisiana State University with a bachelor’s degree in interior design and attended Parsons School of Design for Environmental Design. In addition to her wealth of knowledge and experience in design, she is also the Past 2020 President of the AIA New Orleans Chapter and a Louisiana State Board of Interior Designers. Ian is an equally established architect who graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from the University of Chicago and a Master of Architecture from Tulane University as the valedictorian. He is a recognized member of AIA and NCARB. NANO has also been exclusively invited, as the only New Orleans-based Architecture firm to have ever been invited, to the world-renowned Venice Biennale “TIME SPACE EXISTENCE” Exhibit.

The firm’s superior work rarely goes unnoticed. It has appeared in publications including New Orleans Homes & Lifestyle, Elegant Homes, Design Bureau, and Architect Magazine. One of the firm’s award-winning projects is the 2513 Metairie Road commercial project. It provided architecture and interior design services for the 5,400-square-foot boutique commercial development. NANO’s team designed the property to maximize space while meeting the new Jefferson Parish CPZ-PED zoning guidelines. Not only are materiality and details executed with precision to maximize interior retail space but to amplify natural light while creating a pedestrian experience. The $1.6 million project won the 2019 Divine Detail Merit Award from the AIA New Orleans.