Story at a glance:

  • The Solutions Studio team at Arktura is pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in architecture.
  • A design professional shares his experience and journey to joining the Arktura team.
  • Solutions Studio is a team within Arktura that specializes in creating custom solutions for clients.

Architecture is an ever-evolving field that requires constant innovation and creativity. In this industry it’s never enough to simply keep up with trends and innovation; you must be ahead of the curve in all aspects of engagement. Solutions Studio from Arktura is a team of architects, designers, engineers, and more creating groundbreaking designs that push the boundaries of what is possible in architecture.

The team at Solutions Studio creates customized systems for the built environment from a passion for developing beautiful, functional, and sustainable structures that stand the test of time. The mission of Solutions Studio is to elevate space from all angles—whether it’s tailored metal panel systems or acoustical installations or even inventive solutions like the custom exterior facade above featuring custom designed Vapor panels with Arktura backlighting.

To offer a better sense of the innovative nature of Solutions Studio, its products, and its team, allow me to take a step back and provide some additional context into how I stumbled upon this one-of-a-kind company.

My Journey to Arktura


Solutions Studio, along with the team at Arktura (including members of the design and production team), collaborate to create custom-designed solutions. Photo courtesy of Arktura

I’ve always been fascinated by the inner workings of things. The process of assembling components in a particular order excites me, and I enjoy building something new out of these pieces. Even when studying architecture and developing my own design style, creating something in two dimensions was not enough. I was always curious about how it would be constructed.

When I graduated from the University of Southern California I found a job in the architectural lighting industry designing custom light fixtures integrated into facades featuring high-resolution media screens. I enjoyed this work more than traditional architecture because it allowed us to engineer and fabricate custom products for each project. More than simply designing complex solutions, I also wanted to get my hands on the production and manufacturing side of projects on this scale. One project opportunity that came to our desks required a custom perforated light column, and my coworker knew of a company in South LA that could assist—Arktura.

Soon after we toured Arktura’s facilities and I discovered a team who shared my passion and interests. Their Solutions Studio caught my immediate attention for the members’ creativity, design, and fabrication skills. After seeing their remarkable work and meeting the enthusiastic team, I knew joining the company was the right decision for my career. It was clear to me that this specialized team was the design-build synergy that I’d been searching for.

In 2018 I became part of the Arktura team as a project manager. I eventually moved into a new position as a sales manager with Solutions Studio where I could further design and create for the built environment. Working with Solutions Studio I was able to contribute to the future of commercial design and develop my skills.

The Architect’s Architect


Custom solutions can be developed for any size space. This custom acoustic wall is based on a preconfigured system, then adapted to this specific project’s parameters at Geodis, designed by Gresham Smith and Partners in Brentwood, Tennessee. Photo by Robbins Photography

In the simplest terms, Solutions Studio is a team within Arktura that specializes in creating custom solutions for clients. They offer a range of standard and preconfigured systems that can be adapted to suit individual projects. Solutions Studio collaborates with clients with our design assist to fulfill their design vision on any scale.

Challenging demands require an experienced team of designers, engineers, machinists, and critical thinkers to fully realize these projects. Solving these unique design and manufacturing challenges is the type of work that attracted me to Arktura. Creating possibilities and designing solutions is the type of work I’ve been fascinated with since I was young.

Arktura’s Core Values


Arktura sets out to embody its core values of accuracy, resourcefulness, and technology in everything they do. Photo courtesy of Arktura

Resourcefulness. Solutions Studio still requires and embodies all those things, but as our company grows and times change, we are uniquely positioned to adapt. Doing this requires balance. On the one hand we embody a white glove, concierge, and high-end luxury vehicle service that helps our client’s unique visions become reality. On the other our process needs to be sustainable, forward-thinking, and resourceful.

Metal fabrication shops are plentiful in our industry and are becoming more saturated with acoustic material manufacturers. But while most places can cut perforations into a metal panel, few have the same level of design comprehension, customer service, quality standards, and outlook toward efficiency as Arktura’s Solutions Studio.

Accuracy. Accuracy and efficiency are not just how one cuts or bends something correctly. Efficiency also means ensuring the maximum amount of material is sustainably utilized. Generating scripts can save time on thousands of cut files while designing a fixture can make a repetitive task easier for the assembly team. The order in which a system is installed and accessed in the future should also be considered, as well as ensuring something will remain timeless for years to come for everyone interacting with it.

Technology. If we can’t find the perfect solution we’ll create it. If we cannot find the right software or development tool, we will develop it ourselves. Our team explores ways to integrate design with the latest technology and techniques, giving our clients access to the most advanced methods for custom manufacturing. Solutions Studio exemplifies how we are a technology company at heart and committed to using computation and machinery in innovative but practical ways. We see every bit of technology as a chance to improve our clients’ outcomes, and that holistic approach means we stay ahead of the competition.

The Solutions Studio Process


Custom solutions come to life thanks to the dedicated team of designers, engineers, fabricators, and more at Solutions Studio. Photo courtesy of Arktura

What sets Solutions Studio apart from other metal and acoustic manufacturers isn’t just our process but the people behind it. It’s the dedicated designers exploring the unknown in developing innovative new systems and solutions. Our engineers closely examine and test these new systems, ensuring they meet our stringent standards. Our fabricators create and assemble these systems to bring a new wave of design to the built environment. Without these hard-working teams our systems are nothing more than an idea.

If the client doesn’t have a specific vision for their project our design assist team is here to help with a fundamental approach to collaborative design. Solutions Studio’s team can assist in design development, from the earliest stages of an idea to fully finished concepts. This partnership extends from the initial consultation call until the project is installed on-site.

The Art and Emotions Behind Architecture


More than a focal point, custom projects can be tied into the client’s branding, as seen with this gene sequence displayed into perforated Soft Sound for Amicus Therapeutics in Philadelphia, designed by CRB. Photo by Connie Zhou

A building or system’s appearance and functionality are less important than the emotions they evoke. I learned in school and continue to learn daily that a space or object can unexpectedly provoke genuine feelings within you, which is the most fascinating aspect of the experience.

I could look at renderings, fly around a 3D model, or understand how certain materials and finishes react based on their physical properties but still never fully grasp how something will look once it’s made. The excitement when you meet with a designer and see their initial renderings and sketches is due to knowing there will be infinitely more ways to experience what will be constructed.

When looking at a design concept through multiple lenses—the lens of an architect, engineer, or machinist—one does so with a deeper understanding of what’s involved and what limitations exist. This understanding comes from experience and acquired knowledge, which ultimately helps guide a project to success.

One critical lens that continues to gain traction is sustainability. More than ever it’s vital that we design and construct with sustainable intentions as architects and developers of the built environment. This intentionality can come in the form of using recycled materials and how we utilize materials to their maximum potential and the tools required to fabricate them.

Our Vision—Today and Beyond


With close collaboration, cutting-edge technology, and Arktura’s resourceful team, Solutions Studio was able to bring innovative solutions to the built environment for this Tesla project, designed by Michael W. Folonis Architects in Santa Monica. Photo by Art Gray

Solutions Studio wants to continue being the one-stop shop for ideas—striking the right balance between white glove service and resourceful business innovation.

Through constantly exploring new materials, processes, and innovative technologies we can push the boundaries of what is possible in architecture and design. We want to be the experts who make dreams reality and achieve that in even more conscious and inventive ways. It’s not about saying no to things based on limitations but saying yes with a thoughtful and intelligent lens.

Learn more about Arktura


gb&dPRO members are recognized experts in their fields and contribute opinion columns as one of their member benefits. The opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and may not reflect the view of gb&d. We are committed to a diversity of voices advocating for high-performing, sustainable built environment practices. We’d like to hear what you think about this article or any of our other coverage. Send us an email at [email protected].