What we do

We have over 30 years’ experience of designing, re-imagining, and developing buildings, structures, and urban spaces in Bristol, the South West, and UK wide. Our approach ensures that whatever the nature of the project we can offer tailored advice and a service structured to meet your needs.

We then use our creativity and experience to add value at every stage in the process.    

Our services include:

  •  Architecture
  •  Urban Design + Master planning
  •  Planning + Listed Building Applications
  •  Feasibility Studies
  •  Refurbishment and Repurpose
  •  Building Information Modelling (BIM)


At stretto architects we fundamentally believe in designing healthy, comfortable buildings that have a minimal impact on the environment around us.

We believe that sustainable design and work practices are part of a moral imperative to minimise our impact on the natural environment and to ensure our activities in the ‘now’ will not adversely affect the lifestyle and opportunities available to future generations.
Sustainability can only be achieved through collaboration; engaging professionals, designers, manufacturers, and local people to ensure buildings and places are long lived and long loved.

Community involvement is at the heart of good design, after all, the security of buildings and urban space is dependent upon the people that use them.

To define and shape places effectively requires an understanding of the social, political, and environmental factors that have a bearing on the built environment and the people that use buildings. By maintaining an awareness of these pressures and exploring ways in which they influence the design process it is possible to conceive of new ways to produce architecture that is both sustainable and rewarding to experience.

The construction industry has a considerable impact on the planet. It is responsible for the consumption of half of our global resources, both for building and maintenance. We encourage clients to actively work with construction professionals to minimise this impact.

By designing buildings that are inherently flexible we aim to accommodate the changing future needs of our clients and, hopefully, subsequent occupiers. This approach has the added benefit of reducing the potential for short-term redundancy and demolition.

The potential for reusing existing structures through refurbishment, remodelling, recladding, retrofitting, upgrading, change of use, extending, and/or partial demolition is increasingly important for development opportunities.

We must all commit to reducing our environmental footprint by continuously improving our policies, processes, protocols, and specifications.

Our approach is it to focus on the established architectural concerns of economy, utility, durability, comfort, and aesthetics through sustainable practices. We hope to be able share these objectives through our work with clients, consultants, and other stakeholders in the built environment.

Building Information Modelling (BIM)

BIM is an intelligent 3D model-based process that gives architecture, engineering, and construction professionals the insight and tools to more efficiently plan, design, construct, and manage buildings and infrastructure.

We have developed an expertise in BIM on projects since 2008 and were the Constructing Excellence 2014 Award winner for Innovation in design and Procurement using BIM on £80m new build redevelopment projects at Bristol Royal Infirmary for which we helped develop a direct from Model to Fabrication process for structure and external envelope works packages as part of a project DfMA strategy.

It has been a government requirement that all public sector projects should be to BIM level 2 by 2016. The importance of BIM either for new build or refurbishment projects lies not in the ability to clash detect or prepare 4d output or view in 3D but as the support of site wide FM data base that enables a client to fully access the hard data required to maintain the building and implement change in the future.

Real data can be used to assess environmental conditions continuously incorporating change, systems can be evaluated independently, and the model can be integrated to determine a scheduled repair and replace strategy.

Handing over a BIM model to a main contractor also adds confidence to the tender process ensuring that future client requirements are embedded.

Consultation and Engagement

We pride ourselves in our collaborative approach to design and believe that working as part of a co-operative team enhances the design process, resulting in better quality buildings. It is essential that this same collaborative approach is used both with the end users, to establish a detailed brief, and with the design team to ensure that the building is delivered in accordance with the brief, on time and on budget. To ensure the continuity of this approach, senior members of our team will be involved in the project throughout the design and delivery process.
stretto architects approach to supporting the economic, social and environmental wellbeing of residents in the south west of England lies in a multi-faceted policy embedded within our working practices since formation where we review opportunities for added social value at both and a project and practice level.

On a project level we explore individual opportunities for added social value ensuring that wherever possible we procure our products and services locally, that our policies on Sustainability and Equal Opportunities are observed and that community engagement is placed central to our designs.
Social enterprise is an initiative that that can enhance social engagement and where appropriate we can bring in local groups to help integrate a project within the community.

We have developed strong Business, Personal, Artistic and Social ties across the region, supporting local school career days, charities, assisting start-ups, collaborating with local artists.

Over 80% of our office costs are expended through companies within thirty miles of our Bristol office.

A team that works well together and has the same vision will deliver the best possible outcome for a project. Personal relationships and effective communication are key.

Collaboration requires clear definitions to bring clarity to the team and facilitate one team working.

Tools that can be used to achieve this include:

  • A clear Roles and Responsibilities Matrix.
  • Clear and established lines of communication
  • Understandable and user-friendly CAD / BIM protocols
  • The appropriate use of an extranet system, with clear and user-friendly protocols.

Clear and direct communication where necessary, to ensure that important issues do not get lost in the system.