Auckland 2017

26-27 Sep, Tue–Wed 9pm–4am, ASB Showgrounds

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Christopher Orsega

Christopher Orsega

As an architect for a diverse group of award-winning projects, Chris has led design teams in developing buildings which resonate with both their overall conceptual clarity and finely crafted detail. 

Chris joined the Pittsburgh office of Bohlin Cywinski Jackson in 1997, after having received an undergraduate degree in structural engineering from Princeton. He left the firm to pursue a Master’s in Architecture at Harvard, where he was awarded the prestigious Thayer Fellowship. He worked at a number of firms, including the Renzo Piano Building Workshop in Paris and Office dA in Boston before returning to BCJ’s San Francisco office to work on the glass cube at the Apple Store, Fifth Avenue. Through this and more recent collaborations on other Apple stores, he has had the opportunity to build upon his early training in structural engineering in the pursuit of new aesthetic and structural possibilities of glass.

In his work for Square, Inc. Chris led the design team through a variety of design challenges at all scales: from choreographing movement through a floor plate measuring the length of an entire city block, to developing a finely-tuned palette of materials and details to stitch together otherwise disparate spaces on multiple floors. With his collaborative, inclusive style, he worked with the owner, design team, and contractor to successfully deliver 175,000 square feet of office and dining space in one year from inception to completion, all under the rigorous constraint of a limited budget.

Most recently, Chris has led teams on projects across a broad range of scales and project types: from 300,000 square feet of office space for a San Francisco technology firm, to a 500 square foot sculptural glass skybridge, to design prototyping and a series of cafes for Blue Bottle Coffee. These diverse projects are shaped by a common design approach, in which the sensitivity to place and refinement of detail are studied in equal measure to produce noteworthy buildings and places that motivate individuals, foster community, and improve organizational culture.

See Christopher Orsega live in Auckland 2017

Tuesday 26 September
11:30am-12:30pm Spotless Seminar Series

Chris joins us from the United States to talk about workplace design trends in the San Francisco Bay area to draw inspiration from. With his extensive experience and expertise in office and retail space, Chris has worked on many Silicon Valley projects.

Chris will concentrate on some recurring themes that have come up in many of these workplace projects such as adaptive reuse of older buildings, creative customisation on a budget for start-ups and strategies for anticipating business growth and change.


Princeton University, Bachelor of Science in Engineering Cum Laude 1996
Harvard University, Master of Architecture With Distinction 2004


Adjunct Professor: California College of the Arts, University of California, Berkeley

Professional Affiliations
American Institute of Architects, AIA California, AIA San Francisco