Senior Urban Designer

Seattle, WA
United States
Professional Areas: 
Urban Design
Experience Level: 
AICP Certification: 
Not required

The award-winning team at GGLO, a collaborative design firm in Seattle and Los Angeles, seeks a Senior Urban Designer.

We are an innovative firm designing buildings, landscapes, and places that weave together a vibrant mix of uses to embrace the communities in which we work.  Our dynamic team of interdisciplinary professionals crafts solutions for our clients by asking the right questions, diving deep into understanding their needs and the context of our projects, and by pursuing new ways of thinking about the future. We are recognized in the design community for the quality and thoughtfulness of our work, and for being focused on outcomes that build healthy communities and cities.


About the Role:

A Senior Urban Design Leader at GGLO leads by example, working closely with Principals and Urban Design staff to design neighborhoods and spaces.  This person collaborates with architects and landscape architects at GGLO, and other professional consultant team members to plan, design, coordinate and present ideas relating to a variety of residential and urban mixed use planning and design projects. While this position manages and directs other staff, this is a hands-on role that involves research, analysis, and significant amounts of drawing.  Digital tools are also used for urban design and planning graphics in both 2D and 3D, presentation and deliverable package preparation. Facilitation, public presentation and community engagement work will also be required.

Project work will require a focus on new urban development, transit-oriented development, revitalization and neighborhood redevelopment, comprehensive and small area plans and site-scale master planning. GGLO projects include large-site, multi-family-led developments, and re-imagination of former retail centers as new urban neighborhoods.  Additional project work includes developments at scale, like those contemplated by HUD’s past and future HOPE VI and CNI programs.



  • Design and manage planning and urban design projects with strong design direction for complex, large-scale projects within an urban context.
  • Demonstrate understanding of design philosophy of projects and produce visual representation to support that philosophy.
  • Perform meaningful research to explore studies to merge with local code and zoning regulations
  • Use research to compare buildings and sites, analyze the effects of design on surrounding fabrics, determine the location of programs, and explore possible building envelopes, materials, and building shape options.
  • Incorporate current planning trends regarding transportation, sustainability and community engagement into work.
  • Incorporate Integrated Sustainable Design solutions into projects.
  • Work at a variety of scales from streetscape and public space design to district/campus level planning.
  • Generate solutions by providing schemes, design options and ideas to assist in the preparation of design presentation packages using various software tools (Rhino, Sketch-Up, V-Ray).


  • Coordinate with the larger project team including interface with owner, contractor, and consultants.
  • Organize and prioritize own work efforts as well as assist with organizing team members, tasks, and meetings.
  • Actively promote a collaborative and innovative culture, engage staff, and provide opportunities for development
  • Develop, manage and grow client relationships, and lead the proposal process for new projects.
  • Assist in preparation of proposals; participate in interviews and public presentations.


  • Employ creative thinking abilities and contribute to firm-wide design excellence and problem solving.
  • Reliably understand the relationship between design and constructability.
  • Present ideas and designs clearly and professionally in-line with the overall project goals and vision to principals and other project and community stakeholders.


Education and Experience

  • Architecture License Required
  • Minimum of 15 years of professional, built project experience is required
  • Significant experience in multifamily development, and the design parameters of those building types with comprehensive understanding of building form and space planning from prior architecture experience.
  • Practical knowledge of real estate development and financing associated with private sector development. 
  • Experience with zoning analysis, the entitlement process, and public involvement.
  • Advanced professional degree in either architecture, landscape architecture, or urban design.  Candidates with degrees in Urban Planning will be considered only if work samples demonstrate experience in design at a conceptual and schematic level. 
  • Significant domestic experience with public and private sectors in the Pacific Northwest.  The same experience in Southern California is beneficial.
  • Experience in public and private development, and the ability to integrate economic and political interests with design are preferred. 


  • Ability and interest in representing design concepts at the city block and campus scale with strong interest in urban design and integrating urban form, streetscapes, open space, and circulation.
  • Talent in a broad range of graphic and technical computer software is required for this hands-on design leadership position.  Proficiency in AutoCAD, Adobe Suite Sketchup, Lumion, Ecotect, MS Office, InDesign Graphic software, Freehand graphics and GIS preferred. Knowledge of ESRI GIS software required. Other preferred proficiencies include Rhino, BIM (Revit), MS Office, NewForma and Deltek Vision.
  • This position requires the willingness to expand knowledge in planning, landscape architecture and architecture for a variety of project types and scales.
  • Critical thinking and strong communication skills (graphic, written and interpersonal) are very important.   
  • Demonstrated interpersonal, team leadership and organizational skills along with strong project management skills, including significant experience designing and leading public processes and demonstrated negotiation and consensus building skills.
  • Ability to communicate complex and controversial issues effectively, both orally and in writing with the public, boards and City Council, City personnel, other agencies or community groups.
  • Ability to analyze and synthesize large amounts of complex information.
  • Ability to handle planning projects which involve politically sensitive or controversial issues.
  • Ability to work independently AND in a highly collaborative team environment.
  • Excellent hand-drawing skills


We offer paid licensure and industry memberships, professional development, mentorship programs, flexible schedules, remote work, generous time off, ORCA commuter passes, bicycle parking, office bicycles for use, casual dress code, relaxed atmosphere, pet friendly atmosphere, indoor gym, pool, sauna, summer concert series in our outdoor space, and a collaborative, stable environment.  Along with competitive salaries, we offer a generous benefit package including fully paid Medical, Dental, Vision, Short and Long Term Disability, and Life Insurance, 401K with employer match program, annual Profit Sharing contributions, as well as an annual discretionary bonus opportunity for all employees.


How to Apply:

To apply, please send a resume, salary requirements, and portfolio PDF attachments (5MB or less) to Brianna Mitchell, HR/Hiring Coordinator at Please use the subject line 'Senior Urban Designer' in your email.

GGLO, LLC is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer committed to hiring a diverse workforce and maintaining an inclusive culture.

Published on:
June 12, 2018 - 10:50am
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