Aspen architects head downvalley |

Aspen architects head downvalley

BASALT Two prominent Aspen architectural firms are preparing to move their offices downvalley.Harry Teague Architects and Ernemann Group Architects will move into a new building Teague is constructing along the Highway 82 Basalt bypass.”We’ll be moving in about a month,” Karin Teague, part-time office administrator at her husband’s firm, said Thursday.Michael Ernemann said his firm will likely relocate in June.Harry Teague Architects will take the bulk of the 4,000-square-foot ground floor of the new building. Ernemann will purchase space and another spot will be rented to an engineering firm, Teague said.The new building has four affordable housing units in the upper floor and a loft. One unit will be reserved for an employee of Harry Teague Architects.The building is along the banks of the Roaring Fork River, upvalley from where a new condominium-hotel is being constructed.Teague said Harry Teague Architects has 10 employees. All but one lives in the midvalley.Ernemann said all four employees in his firm, including himself, live in the midvalley. He has been an architect in Aspen for 36 years, most of them at his own firm. He currently rents space about one block from the Silver Queen Gondola.Ernemann said he isn’t leaving Aspen out of dissatisfaction. He will miss being so close to skiing, walking to lunch at one of the many restaurants and running into old friends.Affordability motivated his relocation. Architects need a lot of space and it’s becoming difficult to afford the rents in Aspen for the amount of space necessary, he said. Since all his employees live in the midvalley, it made sense to relocate to affordable space there.”The commute has become more and more punitive with each passing year,” Ernemann said.He is also looking forward to riding his bicycle to work.Ernemann said technological advances make it easy to work at virtually any site. A firm no longer needs to be within walking distance of a hotel where a client is staying, he said. An increasing number of clients and projects are now out of town, he said.

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