Julian Lineham, PE, SECB, CEng, FICE
Julian Lineham may be trained as a structural engineer, but it is his passion for architecture that guides the highly inventive structural solutions he creates for clients around the world. A native of Hampshire, England, Julian received his civil engineering degree from the prestigious University of Bristol in 1986. His strong aptitude for architectural structure, and fascination with the history of building, construction and renovation, has resulted in hundreds of productive partnerships with forward-thinking architects inspired by his consistently original ideas.
A life-long student of architectural style, history and evolution, Julian began his career with one of the most respected architectural firms in London—YRM Architects and Planners. After spending the next decade in London working with some of England's leading structural engineering firms (Campbell Reith Hill and Oscar Faber PLC), Julian was drawn to the United States, settling in Boulder, Colorado with his young family in 1997. There, Julian joined Loris and Associates where he was awarded his PE. In 2001, Julian persuaded his current partner, Chris, to leave New York to help him develop a new building structures division for the firm. After working together at Loris for three years, they launched Studio NYL in February 2004 to more actively explore challenging architectural solutions, offer more diverse design possibilities, and help architects see that engineering can indeed inspire architectural expression.
Julian's international work includes projects like the high-security British Embassy in Muscat, Oman where the concrete frame structure for the six-building complex and surrounding compound wall—housing approximately 30 people—were designed in 1990 as protection from a low-level terrorist attack by rocket or a vehicle trying to breach the compound. The extreme flood loads from seasonal Wadi surges and sea swells also had to be considered when building the perimeter wall as the Embassy is located directly adjacent to the Gulf of Oman. A unique feature, the cast-in-place (CIP) concrete dome in the main office, consists of a four-inch thick shell structure spanning 35 feet with a traditional Omani decorative design cast into its soffit. The 3-D kingpost tension shade structure that spans the length of the swimming pool also stands out.
Julian’s mastery of complex geometries and the intricacies of exposed sculptural concrete are best seen in Edinburgh's New Museum of Scotland, which also required extensive exposed CIP concrete work. His expertise with highly unusual loads as well as construction phasing and design also allowed him to integrate an existing historic steam locomotive and stone crofter's cottage into the final buildings. In addition to being one of the first engineers to build a complete digitized computer model of London on a very early version of CAD, Julian's expertise with highly complex, historic renovations—often limited by extremely tight sites and intricate neighborhood restrictions—was honed in the heart of London. For him, the experience of inserting a modern intervention into an historic building is an exercise made all the more enjoyable by his innate love of old structures. Julian views historic projects as detective work and puzzles to be solved, relishing every moment of the process.
Julian's extensive renovations experience has garnered broad respect for his knowledge of how historic buildings in the Western United States fit together. He has worked on projects as diverse as Walsenburg's old Huerfano High School (which was converted to the state-of-the-art Spanish Peaks Public Library using carbon fiber technologies), to restoring some of the oldest log cabins in Colorado. Julian willingly takes the time to investigate and document these historic structures so he can apply his unique skills, understanding of materials and construction techniques to effectively recycle the embodied energy already contained in the building and breathe new life into it.
Julian's most recent experience includes projects constructed of all types of materials, with particular emphasis on expressive or exposed structures. For example, on the Longmont Museum and Cultural Center in Longmont, Colorado he envisioned and designed the complex, exposed radial structure suspended over the main cylindrical lobby area as well as the leaning canopy columns, tapered radial high level canopy cantilevers and kingpost trusses that mimic the original building—all in a highly cost-effective way.
In essence, Julian has a truly holistic view of how to put all aspects of a building together—including architecture, civil, structure, MEP, technology, architecture and landscaping—and is passionate about high-end design and complex challenges. His breadth of experience and knowledge of technologies being used around the world make his work unconventional and exciting. Further, his commitment to helping local contractors learn new techniques and approach projects in novel ways that consider aesthetics, constructability, efficiency and budget continues to elevate his clients' architectural possibilities [solutions?]. He shares, "No challenge is too great. I want to be involved with the most challenging projects taking place nationally and internationally. We have the skills to deal with any challenge presented to us—Studio NYL should be the first firm architects think of for any project no matter how routine or complex the task."
Julian chaired the Structural Engineers Association of Colorado (SEAC)/American Institute of Architects (AIA) Architectural Liaison Committee, whose mission is to advance and improve working relationships between structural engineers and architects, from 2001 to 2006. He has been a guest lecturer at the University of Colorado at Denver and Boulder, and has presented at numerous American Institute of Architects conferences and 10x10 lectures. In addition to his PE in the United States, Julian also holds a Chartered Engineering license in the United Kingdom.
As fully engaged holistic structural engineers, Studio NYL's architectural clients often turn to Julian and Chris for proactive architectural solutions. In fact, one of the firm's ongoing clients, Colorado Springs-based Gregory Friesen, FAIA principal of CSNA, refers to them as “architects specializing in structural engineering.”
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