Senior Urban Designer - Seattle
Job Type

The award-winning team at GGLO, a collaborative design firm, seeks a Senior Urban Designer for our Seattle location to support our growth in multiple locations, disciplines, markets, and project types.  

About GGLO

 GGLO is a design practice for architecture, urban design, landscape architecture, and interior design. With offices in Boise, Seattle, and Los Angeles, we work as a single, collaborative studio focused on connecting people through beauty and innovation. We create projects which are visionary, contextually appropriate, and culturally resonant. 

About the Role

The best urban design solutions foster public life through an evolutionary and inclusive approach to city making, neighborhood spaces, and connections. Designing at the urban scale requires a comprehensive and wide-ranging systems approach, be it a masterplan for a new city or district, the revitalization of a neighborhood, or for planning a new mixed-use development. It is an undertaking that must include a vision at large scale, that follows through to the small details. Our team combines knowledge from multiple disciplines, with a passion for understanding complex systems of social, environmental, and technological evolution in the urban environment.

A Senior Urban Design Leader at GGLO leads by example, working closely with Principals and Urban Design staff to design neighborhoods and spaces. This person collaborates with architects and landscape architects at GGLO, and other professional consultant team members to plan, design, coordinate and present ideas relating to a variety of residential and urban mixed-use planning and design projects. While this position manages and directs other staff, this is a hands-on role that involves research, analysis, and significant amounts of drawing. Digital tools are also used for urban design and planning graphics in both 2D and 3D, presentation and deliverable package preparation. Facilitation, public presentation and community engagement work will also be required. 

Project work will require a focus on new urban development, transit-oriented development, revitalization and neighborhood redevelopment, comprehensive and small area plans and site-scale master planning. GGLO projects include large-site, mixed-use environments, and re-imagination of existing developments as new urban neighborhoods. Additional project work includes developments at scale, like those contemplated by HUD’s past and future HOPE VI and CNI programs. 

Essential Duties and Responsibilities


· Design and manage planning and urban design projects, providing strong design direction for complex, large-scale projects within       an urban context.

· Demonstrate understanding of GGLO’s design philosophy of projects and produce visual representation to support that philosophy.

· Perform meaningful research to explore studies to merge with local code and zoning regulations.

· Use research to compare buildings and sites, analyze the effects of design on surrounding fabrics, determine the location of programs, and explore possible building envelopes, materials, and building shape options.

· Develop strategic development plans that include a high level of understanding of public and private finance mechanisms, market requirements and needs, dependencies of a wide variety of urban uses, construction sequencing and other development elements.

· Incorporate current planning trends regarding transportation, sustainability and community engagement into work.

· Incorporate Integrated Sustainable Design strategies and solutions into projects, with an eye toward those that are Climate Positive.

· Work at a variety of scales from streetscape and public space design to district/campus level planning.

· Guide and assist GGLO’s computational design team in developing dynamic parametric tools to be used in exploring strategic development plan alternatives, and in developing presentations for clients and stakeholders.

· Generate solutions by providing schemes, design options and ideas to assist in the preparation of presentation packages that follow GGLO presentation standards using various software tools (Rhino, Sketch-Up, V-Ray).


· Coordinate with the larger project team including interface with owner, contractor, consultants, and lead team members

· Assist with organization of team members, tasks, and meetings.

· Actively promote a collaborative and innovative culture, engage staff, and provide opportunities for development. 

· Develop, manage, and grow client relationships, and lead the proposal process for new projects.

· Assist in preparation of proposals; participate in interviews and public presentations. 


· Employ creative thinking abilities and contribute to firm-wide design excellence and problem solving, including active participation in firm design dialogue. 

· Reliably understand the relationship between design and constructability. 

· Present ideas and designs clearly and professionally in line with the overall project goals and vision internally to GGLO Membership, prior to- and in preparation for project and community stakeholders.

· Organize and prioritize your own work efforts. 


Education and Experience

· Architecture License Required with bonus points for LEED ND, ILFI, or similar accreditation.

· Minimum of 15 years of professional, built project experience is required.

· Significant experience in mixed-use development (including the design parameters of those building types) with comprehensive understanding of building form and space planning from prior architecture experience.

· Practical knowledge of real estate development and financing associated with private sector development. 

· Experience with zoning analysis, the entitlement process, and public involvement.

· Advanced professional degree in either architecture, landscape architecture, or urban design. Candidates with degrees in Urban Planning will be considered only if work samples demonstrate experience in large-scale physical design at conceptual and schematic levels. 

· Experience with public and private sectors in the Pacific Northwest, Mountain West, and/or Southern California is beneficial. 


· Ability and interest in representing design concepts at the city block and campus scale with strong interest in urban design and integrating urban form, streetscapes, open space, and circulation.

· Talent in a broad range of graphic and technical computer software is required for this hands-on design leadership position. Proficiency in Revit, AutoCAD, Adobe Suite Sketchup, Lumion, Ecotect, MS Office, InDesign Graphic software, Freehand graphics and GIS preferred. Strong level of knowledge of ESRI ArcGIS software required. Other preferred proficiencies include Rhino, NewForma and Deltek Vision.

· Understanding of parametric tools, data sets, and ability to work with others to set program requirements for custom parametric tools including, but not limited to Grasshopper, Dynamo, Ladybug, and others.

· Eagerness to expand knowledge in planning, landscape architecture and architecture for a variety of project types and scales.

· Critical thinking and strong communication skills (graphic, written, and interpersonal) are very important.  

· Demonstrated interpersonal, team leadership and organizational skills, including significant experience designing and leading public processes and demonstrated negotiation and consensus building skills. 

· Ability to communicate complex and controversial issues effectively, both orally and in writing with the public, boards and City Council, City personnel, other agencies or community groups. 

· Ability to analyze and synthesize large amounts of complex information. 

· Ability to handle planning projects which involve politically sensitive or controversial issues.

· Ability to work independently AND in a highly collaborative team environment.

· Excellent hand-drawing skills



We offer a stimulating and exciting team-oriented design environment where our employees are challenged to bring their best creative spirit to their work. Our workplace is respectful and diverse, with teams that thrive on engagement, learning and innovation. We take great pride in working together to deliver the highest-quality design solutions for our clients, and leading innovative design into the future. Additionally, we offer paid licensure and industry memberships, professional development, mentorship programs, and a collaborative, stable environment. Along with competitive salaries, we offer a generous benefit package including fully paid Medical, Dental, Vision, Short- and Long-Term Disability, Life Insurance, 401K with employer match program, generous time off, transit subsidy, bicycle parking, pet friendly atmosphere, annual Profit-Sharing contributions, as well as an annual discretionary bonus opportunity for all employees.


Please visit our careers page at or click Apply button if visible. We look forward to hearing from you!


GGLO, LLC is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer committed to hiring a diverse workforce and maintaining an inclusive culture.