Stephen Achilles joined Pei Partnership Architects in 1992 and brought with him a wide breadth of professional experience. Over a period of 40 years he has actively participated at the highest levels of the American architectural community in design, technical documentation, and construction administration. As a city planner and urban designer in the administration of New York’s mayor John Lindsay, Mr. Achilles was involved in the re-examination of the New York City zoning resolution, during which urban design incentives were first introduced into the zoning of a major city. Almost all major commercial development in New York City in the past 35 year bears the imprint of these zoning initiatives.
From 1978 to 1992, Stephen Achilles worked with Philip Johnson and John Burgee, where he rose to the position of partner. During those years, he led teams in the design of high profile corporate headquarters and investment towers that included such late twentieth century landmarks as the Williams Tower in Houston, New York’s elliptical “Lipstick Building”, and the twin leaning towers of the Plaza de Castilla in Madrid. These buildings and others were tours de force executed within the uncompromising limits of commercially-driven schedules and budgets. Mr. Achilles also led the design teams for projects as diversified as the neo-Ledoux College of Architecture at the University of Houston, and the Wortham Water Park at the Texas Medical Center in Houston.
As a principal at Pei Partnership Architects, Mr. Achilles has continued his wide-ranging responsibilities. He was project director for two projects in Jakarta: the BDNI Center, a 3.3-million-square foot high-rise development and the 525,000-square-foot International Financial Center. He has directed design of the master plan of the Forum Cultural Guanajuato in León, Mexico; the Guanajuato State Library, the Galleries at Downtown Jebel Ali in Dubai, U.A.E. and was project director for the one-million-square foot Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center completed in Los Angeles in 2007. He recently directed the design of a flagship BMW dealership in Beijing that is the largest auto dealership in China as well as BMW’s first anticipated LEED Gold-certified dealership. Mr. Achilles is also directing the design of the Bank of China Tower in Suzhou, China.
Mr. Achilles holds a Master of Architecture degree from the University of California at Berkeley and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Yale University.