Stark Wilson Duncan Architects Inc (SWD) is a full service architectural firm with offices in the historic Country Club Plaza in Kansas City, Missouri. SWD serves a wide range of commercial, residential and public sector clients throughout Kansas and Missouri, with an emphasis on master planning, multi-family housing, historic restoration, healthcare, office and restaurant design.
Founded by Herbert E. Duncan, Sr. as a single practitioner firm in 1935, his early years as an architect included custom designs for the first 300 homes in Leawood, Kansas. Herb Duncan specialized in the design of single family residences and large multi-family housing projects, including the award winning Village Green Apartments.
Herb Duncan, Jr. joined his father's architectural practice in 1957 and began to expand its practice into other fields of architecture. Residential design remained the primary focus of the firm's practice in the 1960s and 1970s but projects now included office buildings, shopping centers, educational facilities, museum design and master planning. The firm's name was changed to Duncan Architects Inc in the late 1970s. Projects of this era included design of the enclosure for Rozzelle Court and renovation of Atkins Auditorium during a ten year tenure as architect for the William Rockhill Nelson Museum of Art. Long term relationships with William Jewell College included design of their multi-purpose facility and Music Building; long term relationships with Rockhurst College included renovation of most of the major buildings at that campus; a third long term relationship with St. Teresa's Academy included the design of their multi-purpose building and renovation of each campus building. SWD has also been the architect for the Lyric Opera of Kansas City since its relocation to Downtown Kansas City.
SWD has designed some 25,000 new multi-family housing units and over 500 custom single family residences. Office designs have included national headquarters buildings for the Dodson Insurance Group and The American Hereford Association. Hotel designs have included The Sheraton Royal, a Ewing Kaufmann project since renamed The Adams Mark. Master planning designs have included a multi-use plan for the entire east lake at Lakewood in Lee's Summit, Missouri, renewal of the historic Robidoux Hill and Museum Hill residential communities in St. Joseph, Missouri, the first concept studies for a Black History Museum and International Jazz Hall of Fame in the 18th and Vine Historic District, and phased construction of a Community Center for Longview College.
In 1984, SWD developed a master plan for redevelopment of the City Market in Kansas City and historic restoration of remaining buildings on Delaware and Walnut from the earliest days of the River City, now commonly known as The River Market. Stage One of the River Market redevelopment included historic restoration and adaptive reuse of 17 buildings on Delaware and Walnut, creation of 2 new parks, design of the 34,000 SF Steamboat Arabia Museum and renovation of the City Market. A new residential community of 300 loft apartments was established and has been expanded in Stage Two developments to some 1,200 units with waiting lists and a new downtown residential community of some 3,000 people. SWD has been the architect of almost every Stage Two project and was the design architect for the first new building in the River Market, the 32 unit Conover Place condominium building.
The last fifteen years have also included the design of a 21,000 SF addition to the Albrecht Kemper Museum of Art in St. Joseph, Missouri, a $16M renovation of the historic Elms Resort Hotel and Spa in Excelsior Springs, Missouri.
Since 1999, principals Paul Stark and Tim Wilson have been the design architects for approximately 100 historic renovation projects, totaling over 2,500 residential lofts, apartments and condominiums. Their focus and vision for rehabilitation of neglected buildings in both urban and small town settings has played a major role in creating new in-city neighborhoods and revitalizing deteriorated downtown areas.
Stark Wilson Duncan Architects Inc has had several different names and a long list of clients these past 75 years. These clients have given us the opportunity to design many buildings for themselves and for others. We look forward to the years ahead with the same dedication to each and every one of our clients, to each project, to architecture and to the pursuit of excellence.
Stark Wilson Duncan Architects Inc has received 4 Urban Design awards, 18 Kansas City, Missouri EDC Cornerstone awards, 3 St. Louis, Missouri Landmarks Association awards, 3 Preserve Missouri awards, the Missouri Governor's Award for Excellence in Affordable Housing, the "Best of Best" Award from the U.S. H.U.D. District 7, and other awards in our pursuit of design excellence for each client.