Top 10 Best Architecture Firms in Oakland, California
Basil D Soufi / CC BY-SA (
We know finding the top architecture firm in Oakland, California can be difficult, so we put together this detailed list of the best of the best so you can make your decision wisely. Each architect offers various specialties, from those with experience in Zero-Net Energy Building Envelope Designs to those who focus on sustainable, high-performance building solutions. This list of amazing architectural designers is ever-changing and expanding, so please check back often. If you find another location that should be listed here - or one that should be removed - please let us know!
1. Ecobuild Architects, 555 12th St 5 Fl, Oakland, CA 94607
About: The company was established in 2017. Ecobuild Architects is a rebranding of Courtney Miller Architects, an award-winning firm with a special emphasis on high-performance green building strategies, founded in 1992 in the Boston Metro area.
Ecobuild Architects is centrally situated in downtown Oakland, in the significant Oakland, Chinatown, and Paramount Theatre landmarks of the African American Museum and Library. Their office is only a few blocks away from the historic area of downtown, which has several century-old buildings and extensive high-end shopping, restaurants, and entertainment venues.
This makes Ecobuild Architects a centrally situated architecture firm specializing in superbly built single and multi-family projects as well as upgrades to commercial tenants (conveniently located on 12th Street). In the East Bay area, including the nearby communities of Emeryville, Lafayette, Danville, Orinda, Dublin, Pleasanton, and Alameda, California, they can be easily found.
Services Offered: programming, drawing design services, a commercial project, construction management, record drawings, schematic design services, project administration, site analysis & selection, construction documentation, interior design services, residential project, and virtual consultations
What Makes them Different: Highly reviewed, accredited and award-winning architecture company in the San Francisco Bay area, known as the premier sustainability designers in the region.
2. Jarvis Architects, 5278 College Ave, Oakland, CA 94618
About: Jarvis Architects was established in 1970. The company is located in the San Francisco Bay Area. Their staff creates original designs that address the unique needs and budgets of their clients. Each project preserves and celebrates the building's style while reflecting the client's personality and dreams. The company’s goal is to unearth the full potential of each building and site to capture views and light, create warm, open interiors, and maximize outdoor spaces.
Services Offered: art selection & procurement, bedroom design, commercial space design, flooring selection, furniture customization, shopping/purchasing services, home organization, installation services, kitchen design, living room design, virtual consultations, renovation consultation, window treatments selection, bathroom design, color/paint selection, dining room design, full house design, furniture selection, home office design, home staging, kids' bedroom design, lighting selection, nursery design, office space design, and space planning & layout
What Makes them Different:
LEED Certified Staff Recent Awards 2016 & 2017
Best Residential Architects
Oakland Magazine's Best of Oakland & East Bay 2015
4 Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association Preservation Awards 2014
Remmie Award, San Francisco Bay Area chapter of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry 2011
Orinda Mayor's Award for Excellence in Architecture
3. Drafting Cafe Architects, 3007 E 12th St, Oakland, CA 94601
About: In 2010, founder Ethan Andersen became aware that there was a demand for a different kind of architecture firm - one that could facilitate and execute the vision of homeowners. While many architects want their signature style to build projects, fewer architects are happy to add a bedroom or porch, remodel a cellar, or gut a bathroom. Ethan set out to rethink how architectural services can be encouraged, not dictated, and developed the Drafting Cafe. The aim was to establish a company that could partner closely with homeowners to provide outstanding designs, on-time delivery, and fair fees.
The word Cafe is meant to evoke the personal experience of sitting down for a casual chat about your home at a coffee shop. Drafting is the modest origin of what the company does. This personal approach has been concentrated on by Drafting Cafe Architects since 2010. Their team is committed and welcoming, and the team’s primary concern is their customers' happiness. With hundreds of projects completed, the Bay Area 's premier supplier of residential architecture is Drafting Cafe Architects. On different types of projects, they have collaborated with almost every municipality. Ethan used his experience and skills to develop coding software, Planchx, which is used at Drafting Café by other architects and on all projects.
Services Offered: as-built drawings, design, permit drawings, interior design, design to build and structural engineering
What Makes them Different: They only design residential remodels and additions. Larger projects can consume the resources of an architecture office. By only focusing on residential work, they have developed a streamlined approach that keeps all of their projects on track and a priority. They take budget and timeline of their clients seriously.
4. Winder Gibson Architects, 1898 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94103
About: Winder Gibson Architects was established in 1987. The firm was founded by John Winder, with Geoff Gibson joining as a partner in 2002. The company has moved its offices within San Francisco several times but has been in the current location for more than 4 years.
Services Offered: provides a full range of architectural services, including design, planning, programming, permits, project management and construction administration
What Makes them Different: Winder Gibson Architects take conceptual and design-driven projects from idea to completion through strong project-management skills, client communication and code knowledge.
5. Icosadesign, 2998 Ford St, Oakland, CA 94601
About: Icosadesign specializes in interior built-ins, facades, sculptural structures, and pavilion-scale buildings. They are a computationally-driven architectural design firm that partners with their digital fabrication outfit, DEKA, to deliver a comprehensive design/build service.
Services Offered: architecture, computation, and fabrication
What Makes them Different: They believe in a diverse range of personnel to bring creative skills, ideas, and methods to the table.
6. DRAMS Architects, 4050 Harlan St, Emeryville, CA 94608
About: DRAMS Architects is an Emeryville-based design company providing commercial and residential services in and outside the San Francisco Bay Area. The company specializes in the management of architectural projects using comprehensive California code expertise, a large engineering consultancy network, and constructive client contact.
Services Offered: commercial space design, programming, drawing design services, a commercial project, construction management, record drawings, schematic design services, office space design, space planning & layout, full house design, project administration, site analysis & selection, construction documentation, interior design services, residential project, virtual consultations, and renovation consultation
What Makes them Different: DRAMS Architects' main goal is not only to create stunning structures but to improve lives.
7. ARCHITECTS SF, INC., 1390 Market St #200, San Francisco, CA 94102
About: Francisco J. Matos the business owner, has been a licensed and practicing Architect since 2001. He holds a BA in Architecture from Syracuse University, an MBA from the University of San Francisco, and studied at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY & Florence, Italy. He is LEEP AP since 2009 and a member of the A.I.A.
Francisco has collaborated with award-winning architects throughout his career, including Andrew Skurman Architects, based in San Francisco, and Alfonso Architects in Tampa, Florida.
the investigation, evaluation, consultation, and advice
planning, schematic and preliminary studies, designs, working drawings, and specifications
coordination of the work of technical and special consultants
compliance with generally applicable codes and regulations, and assistance in the governmental review process
technical assistance in the preparation of bid documents and agreements between clients and contractors
What Makes them Different: Architects SF provides exceptional architecture services and its goal is to bring clients goals and visions into reality.
8. SRG/Architects, Inc., 562 61st St, Oakland, CA 94609
About: SRG Architects is an Oakland-based full-service design company with over 25 years of experience in numerous design markets across the State of California and Hawaii. They specialize in residential, multi-family, affordable housing, commercial, mixed-use, and architecture developments for restaurants. With extensive experience collaborating with developers, regulatory bodies, design consultants, and internal personnel, they use complex projects under often aggressive deadlines and budgets to extraordinary fruition. They combine their decades of experience with green strategies, technology, designs, and materials with a passionate understanding of the important role architecture plays in the sustainability of the earth to build systems that incorporate function and design with an ecological intent.
Services Offered: Architect / Architecture Design specializing in residential, multi-family residential, affordable housing, commercial, mixed-use, and restaurant design projects.
What Makes them Different: SRG Architects is recognized for outstanding experience and adaptability to projects of varying sizes. In large-scale projects, SRG brings to any project the productivity and management sophistication necessary, as well as the versatility and careful customer attention important for smaller companies.
9. Arcsine, 414 13th St, Oakland, CA 94612
About: In the hospitality, restaurant, and corporate environment, Arcsine is an architecture and interior design company that creates creative and colorful spaces. They believe that through the improvement of our environment, the good design brings people together, fosters partnerships, and encourages innovation.
The company’s objective is to provide compelling design, technological knowledge, and a collaborative atmosphere that exceeds the vision of the client. Principals Daniel Scovill and Adam Winig create a productive experience from conceptual design to the realization of the priorities and aspirations of each project, recognizing that successful projects need conscientious management and abundantly clear communication.
Services Offered: architecture and interior design
What Makes them Different: Arcsine has balanced a relentless commitment to design efficiency, sustainability, and efficient delivery.
10. Tardy & Associates Architects, 3020 Bridgeway, Sausalito, CA 94965
About: Tardy & Associates Architects was formed when Jill Benton-Tardy & Bradford Tardy, local Marin residents, joined forces. Since 1994, in Marin, Sonoma, and San Francisco, they have been building new custom homes and additions.
Tardy & Associates Architects is managed by Jill Benton-Tardy and is a custom design company owned and operated by women.
They take great pride in making the visions of their clients. In construction, they have a good history, as Bradford is also a general contractor. Their specialty is custom residential architecture.
Services Offered: programming, site analysis & selection, and drawing design services
What Makes them Different: The company specializes in custom residential architecture. They have more than 20 years of experience working in Marin County, San Francisco, Sonoma, and Napa.
Do You Need an Architecture Firm for Your Home or Commercial Property?
Ecobuild Architects are experts in designing Cost-Effective, Sustainable Solutions for any size project. Recognized as the premier designers of Zero-Net Energy Building Envelope Designs, Water Reuse, Healthy Indoor Air Quality, & Fire Resilient and New Home Construction Practices, our staff provides exceptional design and construction administration services for residential, commercial, and mixed-use projects throughout California with an eye towards sustainable, high-performance building solutions. Ready to get started? Schedule a consultation here.