Amar Shah

Amar Shah

Los Angeles, CA, US


PDF Portfolio


I am an ambitious architectural and urban designer with 7 to 8 years of experience on various project types. In my design methodology, I pursue important factors related to culture, technology, form, tectonics, program, and spatial qualities that are appropriate to various scales within urban environments.

I hold a very progressive and modern ideology toward architecture and urban design. I believe in a holistic approach to design that involves a rigor and lens that can be applied to any scale. I enjoy collaborative environments where ideas and thoughts are shared freely.

Through educational and working opportunities I continue to be involved in an array of projects primarily in hospitality, urban mixed-use and urban design. Through past opportunities, I have also been a core member of teams involved in residential, transit, and urban regeneration projects that have contributed to my growth as a designer, architect, and urban strategist.



RTKL Associates Inc., Los Angeles, CA, US, Senior Architectural/Urban Designer

High-end Residential | High-end Commercial | Retail Mixed-Use development

Sep 2013 - current

WATG, Architectural and Urban Designer

Urban, Mixed-Use, Hospitality, Leisure, Retail projects and competitions.


+ An emphasis in architectural conceptual design thinking and analysis, schematic design, design development, and construction document phases of major urban projects

+ A team player in integrated urban design projects that involve architectural components

+ counted on to create conceptual 3d models using appropriate programs - including Rhino, Revit Architecture, 3d Studio Max, and Google SketchUP Pro 7

+ Produce innovative graphic presentations and videos with the use of Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Indesign, and 3d animations

Aug 2011 - Aug 2013

WorleyParsons Engineering and Architecture, Architectural Professional

This was work given to me solely to conceptualize and the build a small temporary housing facility for 20 workers in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea. Then i was to create schematic design and construction documents within the time frame given. The Housing will eventually convert into permanent housing for locals of Malabo after the temporary workers leave the country.

Sep 2008 - Jun 2009

Gensler, Technical Designer

I worked mainly on construction documents and technical design for Valencia City Center in Houston, TX. Valencia City Center aims to be a new kind of development including retail, hotels, and condos within one complex.

duties included:
-Technical design of facades and interiors
-Implementing construction parameters with design criteria

Dec 2007 - May 2008

Rey de la Reza Architects, Architecture Intern

I collaborated on Houston Metro Light Rail concept and schematic design. I created 3d renderings of various Metro Rail stations in Houston that were then presented to officials in the City of Houston, for further development.

I also helped create a book of work from Rey de la Reza, FAIA showing 25 years of successfully built projects throughout Houston.

duties included:
-3d renders
-2d schematic drawings (sections,plans)
-site panoramas of potential station areas in Houston
-schematic site section drawings

Jul 2007 - Dec 2007

KTGY Group, Inc., Architecture Intern

(Summer internship only)

I was a draftsmen and architectural intern. I did construction documentation and some design development for the urban concept studios team at KTGY. The projects I was involved in include the San Pedro Bank Lofts project and Central Park Town Homes.

Jun 2005 - Aug 2006


Columbia University, Masters, Architecture and Urban Design

The Urban Design Program is focused on the state of the city in the 21st century in an age of rapid urbanization and cities of growth and contraction that face the transition to new forms and meanings. The program weaves a dialogue between New York City, which is its primary focus, and other world capitals and analogous contemporary conditions; moving between recent theoretical debate on future urbanism, and applied projects that directly engage the realities of the transformations of the post-industrial city. The program attempts to engage both the daily reality of our urban condition and the theoretical abstraction of current academic debate; not one to the exclusion of the other. Urban Design is pursued as a critical re-assessment of conventional approaches relative to questions of site, program, infrastructure, and form-mass, as they have been defined by Urban Design practice during the past century. The Urban Design curriculum engages the role of architecture in the formation of a discourse on urbanism at this moment of post-industrial development and indeed, of post-urban sensibility relative to traditional Euro-American settlement norms.

The Urban Design curriculum exploits the pedagogic potential of the studio as a form of design-based critical inquiry. Studio projects focus on topics related to contemporary Urban Design practice. All three studios emphasize a multi-scalar approach to the urban site (local, neighborhood, metropolitan, regional and global scales), and view Urban Design as an inter-disciplinary practice that negotiates between actors in the urban dynamic.

By proposing an expanded architecturally based teaching model for Urban Design, the program advocates working from the "ground up," rather than adopting a "top down" master-planning approach. It takes advantage of architecture’s traditional concerns for site specificity, spatial experience, construction logics, economics of organization, morphology and physical form, while also engaging realms of knowledge associated with disciplines such as urban ecology, urban geography, and landscape design. In this sense, the program is considered experimental, exploratory, and unorthodox relative to the established canons of the traditional architectural design studio.

The sequencing of the studios is intended to build the linguistic substructure that is essential to Urban Design thought and practice. This emphasis evolves from how representation of the urban site determines the quality of site knowledge (Representation); to how discourse on the city determines interpretations of its past and projections of its futures (Discourse); to the invention of the strategic languages of public engagement involving operational mechanisms for urban transformation at both the formal and programmatic levels (Public Synthesis). The sequence of seminars reinforce this construct. While each studio presents students with differing urban conditions and programming opportunities, all three semesters together reinforce the Program’s commitment to help individual designers develop rigorous Urban Design tools and methods; to acquire a working language to communicate Urban Design ideas; and to enhance the critical skills needed to test and refine Urban Design strategies.

The summer studio engages New York City as a laboratory, exploring the full range of contemporary neighborhood conditions (inner city, periphery, and outer periphery). The fall studio engages a critical analysis of urbanism as a discursive field, as construed differently by diverse disciplines. It considers how Urban Design in the New York City region must confront two interrelated tendencies. Hyper-urbanism, manifested in the continued concentration of people and capital in Manhattan, exists concurrently with re-urbanization along the regional infrastructure that is finding new meanings given today’s post-suburban tendencies involving our changing urban ecological footprint. The spring studio moves the discursive field from the New York context to other world contexts, while the exploration of Urban Design language reaches its most public phase.

Jun 2009 - Jun 2010

University of Southern California (USC), BArch, Architecture

The professional undergraduate program is designed to provide an exceptional university education as well as comprehensive preparation for entry into a competitive and challenging career. Studies in architecture and other basic disciplines are undertaken in parallel throughout the five-year program. Interested students may pursue dual undergraduate degrees or minors combining their interest in architecture with fields such as business, history, fine arts, and urban planning.

The curriculum has two levels of study. The first provides a foundation of understanding on which to build a second level of advanced study. Continuous through the ten semesters of the program runs the design studio in which projects are engaged as a means for developing the skills, knowledge, understanding, and judgment to create appropriate and exemplary architectural designs.

At the end of the third year, the foundation program culminates with a studio project helping students to summarize what they have learned and transition toward the more independent studies of the advanced program. This special integrative semester is also a transition to a more knowing and mature commitment to becoming an architect.

Designed to encourage students to complete their basic education in architecture and to develop their own interests and their own professional directions, the advanced program includes elective opportunities inside and outside the School of Architecture. The program culminates with the Fifth Year Comprehensive Studio, part of the last semester of study. This final semester allows students to explore individual interests. During this time they also develop a comprehensive architectural proposal that demonstrates the full range of skills and knowledge. The proposal is required for the completion of the first professional degree in architecture.

Aug 2002 - May 2007


LEED Accredited Professional Building Design + Construction | 2011, Other

LEED A.P. professional


merit based study abroad opportunity to Saintes, France | 2006, Award

Merit based opportunity to study abroad in Saintes, France for one academic semester.


“Incomprehensible Cities: Architecture in France” - Exhibition | 2007, Other

Exhibition of Work


John Parkinson Memorial Scholarship | 2004-2006, Scholarship

Scholarship award from 2004-2006


Kinne Travel Grant to Mumbai, India | 2010 [Maximizing Infrastructure], Other

Study abroad visit in Mumbai, India grant


Columbia End-of-Year Show - Exhibition | 2010, Other

End of Year Work Exhibition.


Areas of Specialization 


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