Tribute: Marsha Maytum (1954–2024) | Architectural File



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The architect Marsha Maytum has died at 69, 3 years after a prognosis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Maytum is referred to as a lot for the structures she designed, which sensitively reply to their environment and to customers’ wishes and wishes, as for her deep conviction that structure can and will have to cope with our most important issues, together with the local weather disaster and social fairness.

Till the start of 2023, when Maytum stepped clear of day by day apply because of her advancing ALS, she led San Francisco-based Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects (LMSA) together with her husband, Invoice Leddy, and their spouse, Richard Stacy. “One among our priorities used to be the surroundings, and we in reality sought after to concentrate on that paintings,” Maytum instructed RECORD remaining March about organising LMSA, in the beginning based as Tanner Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects in 1989. Since then, the now 38-person company has directed its power to what Maytum, Leddy, and Stacy have known as “mission-driven design,” developing an outstanding portfolio of initiatives for purchasers whose values reflected their very own, together with reasonably priced and special-needs housing, instructional structures, and civic amenities. Alongside the best way, LMSA has garnered many honors, together with the 2017 Structure Company Award from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and 12 AIA Committee at the Atmosphere (COTE) awards.

“Marsha’s particular talent to hook up with other people with empathy and encouragement permeated our company—reinforcing the bond amongst us towards our shared project,” stated Stacy.

Fort Mason.

Citadel Mason Middle for Arts & Tradition (2017). Photograph © Bruce Damont

Maytum used to be a pioneer within the integration of preservation with inexperienced design methods—experience that used to be key to her elevation to the AIA Faculty of Fellows in 2001. Her Thoreau Middle for Sustainability (1997) used to be the primary renovation undertaking within the newly established nationwide park at San Francisco’s Presidio. It remodeled a former military health center into a house for an environmental nonprofit. Amongst different adaptive reuse initiatives used to be the Citadel Mason Middle of Arts & Tradition (2017), the conversion of a ancient pier construction at the town’s waterfront into studio and gallery house.

She firmly believed that structure will have to serve everybody, together with the ones with disabilities. Her cutting edge answer for the Sweetwater Spectrum neighborhood (2013), in Sonoma, California, established a replicable residential type for other people dwelling at the autism spectrum.

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Sweetwater Spectrum (2013). Photograph © Tim Griffith

Maytum’s structures are just one side of her legacy, alternatively. Her management prolonged to advocating for trade throughout the occupation. As 2019 COTE chair, she championed a solution for “pressing and sustained local weather motion,” calling for the fast acceleration of efforts to decarbonize the constructed surroundings. It used to be handed overwhelmingly by way of contributors on the AIA Convention on Structure held that yr in Las Vegas and used to be therefore licensed by way of the group’s board of administrators. “We felt that it used to be essential to take the problem immediately to the club and reveal give a boost to in some way that used to be clear and visual,” Maytum instructed RECORD on the time. The solution’s adoption laid the groundwork for the advance of the AIA’s Framework for Design Excellence which outlines a holistic way to structure, encompassing the surroundings, well being, and fairness. In combination, the solution and the Framework signaled an important realignment of organizational {and professional} priorities.

Above all, she will likely be remembered for her optimism and her steadfast religion within the energy of design. “Marsha’s imaginative and prescient, mentorship, and generative pressure to get issues executed lifted many people, serving to us to look and notice the sure trade this is conceivable,” stated Julie Hiromoto, a essential at HKS who collaborated with Marsha in the course of the AIA and COTE. “She helped us perceive what we—and designers in combination—can do to switch the sector and empower the following technology.”

Maytum is survived by way of Leddy, their youngsters—Anna and Andrew—and two grandchildren.



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