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Story Line

a little history 

cf+a has remained over the years - by choice - a multi-disciplinary firm.


Since 1987 cf+a has served our many clients in ways that are sustainable, functional, profitable, economic, efficient and beautiful.  Our goal is always to provide the kind of spaces that do what owners want them to do in both function and form. To perform . To inspire . To stand the test of time.

Licensed in Wisconsin and Illinois since 1987, the firm has stayed committed to the model of a small, talented and dynamic firm.  Currently at just three professional staff, we recently sold our mixed-use building, constructed in 1892 in a historic downtown of the small city of Freeport, IL., and have moved the studio back to the home studio. The choice to purchase and rehab our downtown building in 1999 served not only to provide amazing, open and light-filled studio and office space for the firm, but also to create a sense of the possibilities of historic restoration and adaptive re-use of fine old buildings and to light the fire of revitalization of the built environment in an older downtown setting. The firm has since re-designed for new uses many, many older buildings in our home location as well as in other regional communities. We value the history of these buildings and the commitments of time and treasure that created our historic downtowns and we take great delight in bringing life back to tired buildings and stressed communities.

It could be said that the firm's residential work began even before its formal licensing with the "House for the 80's", a design competition for University of Illinois-Urbana architecture students sponsored by Woman's Day magazine that was won by Chris in 1981. This amazing small house was constructed in Columbus Indiana and following its publication in Womans's Day in March1982, served to be the inspiration for hundreds of dreamers throughout North America.  Chris's residential work has continued with a compendium of new homes and addition and remodeling projects of nearly every style of home imaginable. Our design confidence is exhibited in the thoughtful renovations, complementary additions, and appropriate use of materials for existing homes and in the loft, the light, and quality design of our new homes.

Add to that body of work commercial design that encompasses financial, educational, religious, manufacturing, and office spaces - new construction and addition and remodeling - for private and public sector clients. Our range extends to public housing for multi-family and single-family, low-rise and high-rise remodeling and life-safety work as well as the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program instituted by Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Interior design often takes a front seat as we analyze work flows, consider structure, enhance natural light, create new efficient work spaces, and choose beautiful finishes and furnishings for corporations and businesses of all sizes. 

We can meet your design needs because our experience is varied, complex and deep.

Chris is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys bicycling, swimming, cross country skiing, canoeing and sailing. Chris's love for nature informs his work as he brings those elements - a balance of light, structure and color - to his sense of design. Working with the client and with his staff, he brings those elements into play in the design as well as the materials to be used in the construction. 


  • University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign - B.A. in Architectural Studies

  • Association of Licensed Architects

  • Licensed in Illinois and Wisconsin



  • Northern Illinois Chapter AIA "Excellence in Design"

  • AIA Architectural Photography Honorable Mention, "My Father's Eyes"

  • Woman's Day Magazine/University of Illinois, "House for the 80's" Design

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