Robby Johnston and Craig Kerins, co-founders of The Raleigh Architecture Company (RACo) on South West Street, can point to several projects they’ve completed in downtown Raleigh within the three years that they’ve been professional partners.
On Hargett Street, Nuvonivo, a children’s clothing boutique, and Arrow Haircuts, a hip take on an old fashioned barber shop, sit side-by-side. On Hillsborough Street, they designed Runologie, an independent running supply shop, and State of Beer, a craft beer bar and bottle shop. Then there’s Crank Arm Brewing on West Davie Street and, by the end of this summer, Standard Foods market and restaurant on Person Street.
These projects are independent, but they resonate with RACo’s design sensibilities: They’re all “up-fits” in challenging spaces within old, existing buildings — a form of sustainability the partners encourage and enjoy. They’re also characterized by clean, uncluttered spaces, innovative uses of everyday materials, and deceptively simple solutions that generate a lot of surprise per dollar.
“Robby and Craig combine a big picture vision for a great modern city with a practical approach, mainly consisting of the hard work that it takes to actually get projects done,” says David Meeker, a managing member of Carpenter Real Estate, State of Beer, and Runologie, among other businesses. “Plenty of folks have one or the other. It’s rare to find a team that has both.” READ MORE (page 16)…