Our Firm

About Us

Established in 1986, Caldwell Architects has grown into one of the most dynamic practices in the southeast with exemplary projects in a variety of industries including healthcare, education, commercial, residential, and historic preservation. At the core of our practice is the importance of people and places – people, for the relationships we build and lives we impact, and places for the contribution that each project brings to the built environment. We are passionate about the role of architecture in creating places and improving the lives of the people that populate them.

Starting in downtown Pensacola, we planted our roots in a historic horse barn along the railroad tracks that connected the city’s once thriving port to a vast network of railroad–based towns and cities across the South. Over the next thirty years, we invested in preserving and rebuilding the urban fabric and the dynamic culture that these places have built into their DNA. Along with the entire community, we witnessed the successful rebirth of our downtown as a waterfront city center with active arts, culture, culinary, and sports venues thriving. In many ways, we approach each project like this – in the context of a much broader goal in mind – improving communities through good design.

After 35 years of growth along the Gulf Coast, we sought to find a partner who shared our culture and philosophy to jointly expand our resources, talent, and opportunities. In 2020, we welcomed Ellis Architects into the Caldwell family. Based out of Tuscaloosa and with offices in Birmingham and Demopolis, they shared a similar pursuit of using architecture in service to their clients and communities and a commitment to leading successful projects together across the Southeast.

With a footprint spanning from the foothills of the Appalachians to the Gulf Coast of Florida, our talented team of architects, interior designers, and urban and neighborhood planners brings a collaborative approach to working internally and with our clients. We have found that the best solutions arise from working together – engaging our clients, solving broader problems, and leading to more successful projects. As active members of our community, we share the desire to reflect the purpose of design within the built environment, the important role that buildings and spaces play in creating and preserving the urban fabric, and the people whose lives are impacted by every project we are privileged to lead.

“Their creative thinking and ability to work with our staff, the Mayor, and the public helped expedite the project” 


Brian Cooper

Director of City of Pensacola

Our Philosophy

Our firm’s design philosophy is community building through good design.

Architecture is equal parts science, art, and a social contract – our philosophy is built around delivering projects that meet the highest standards in each of these critical factors.

We embrace the responsibility of working with our clients to create buildings and spaces that contribute to the built environment and human experience. Equipping ourselves with the talents and skills of individuals working together as a team, we welcome the challenge of working with complex building programs, designing high performance buildings, creating beautiful and functional spaces, and broadening the definition of success for our clients.

The art of architecture is what separates it from just building. It can include the artful placement of the building on its site, the attention to proportion, rhythm, and composition of its envelope, or the craft and attention to the detailing of a stair. It is a reflection of the vision that is developed with an Owner and what this represents to the community around it.

The science of architecture is embodied in the ever-growing complexity of building systems, how they interact with each other, and even how they interact with users. These systems are sometimes designed to be expressed, and at other times designed to be hidden, but with each project there are always challenges to the delivery of engineered building systems that are integrated with the design and vision.

The social contract of architecture manifests itself in how each project deals with broad questions like how buildings serve their communities, how we design them to facilitate well-being, encourage interaction, or increase operational efficiency, or how we can responsibly design them to create a sustainable future. The impact of our projects demands that we critically assess the ability of architecture to improve these aspects of how buildings affect people from the individual to the community-at-large.

Caldwell Associates has an outstanding approach to communicate effectively, listen intently, and function collaboratively with integral leadership and external agencies, to proactively meet design milestone dates on time, and remain within budget.

Dr. James Barnett, Former Associate Vice President

University of West Florida


Our ability to organize, collaborate, and lead the complex task of realizing architectural endeavors is as significant as our ability to delineate our ideas on paper because our work does not get exist in a vacuum. Working with owners, users, and the public, our leadership is manifested through the forms of communication we use to vet our ideas and build consensus – from architectural programming, charrettes, public meetings, and other forms of collaboration that span the life of a project. These communications shape the critical early stages of project development that ensure project development aligns with its vision. Project leadership, not just project management, has become a benchmark of our positive client feedback. 


We constantly measure performance, whether through a client’s evaluation of a design solution, an employee’s measure of our professional development, or even scoring the success of a project meeting. As the saying goes, you cannot improve what you do not measure. Throughout the life of a project from concept development through post-occupancy, we establish these checkpoints both with clients and internally with our staff to get feedback on project progress, meeting project goals, client expectations, and professional growth and education. Seeking better ways to deliver our services brings greater value to projects, engages our clients’ role in creating successful projects, and elevates the professional and personal growth of our team members.  


Architecture is tasked with transforming complex ideas and inert material into built forms, creating environments for people to live, work and play. Technology plays an integral role in communicating our ideas to our clients, engineers and contractors. Whether it is optimizing REVIT software for conflict detection, 3d printing models to convey a spatial concept to a client, or, using Bluebeam to coordinate field changes and markups with a contractor, we embrace technology to improve our work product and to simplify communication. Over the last two years, both with Covid and the expansion of our office, it has become more evident the need for fluency and use of technology to advance projects regardless of the location. Technology is, after all, simply an advanced means to facilitate the vision of our clients. 

A.K. Suter is the standard by which the district will expect on future elementary schools.

Shawn Dennis, Assistant Superintendent -Operations

Escambia County School District


Caldwell Architects is fortunate to share our skills as planners, thinkers, designers and managers in a tremendous variety of projects along the Gulf Coast.

Caldwell Architects is fortunate to share our skills as planners, thinkers, designers and managers in a tremendous variety of projects along the Southeast.  

Listed below are some of the services we offer in helping develop your project:

Architectural Design

Interior Design


Design Consulting

Building Information Modeling

Oculus – Immersive Virtual Reality Walk-throughs

Feasibility Studies

Site Analysis

Marketing Renderings

Specification Writing

Facilities Surveys


Existing Conditions Field Drawings

Master Planning

Design Charrettes

Community/ Shareholder Input Meetings

Public Presentations

Sustainable Design Strategy

Project Scheduling

Government Agency Document Preparation

Conceptual Design

Space Planning

Architectural Programming

3-D Study Models

3-D Printing

Budget Development/Cost Estimating

Budget Analysis

Cost Analysis

Construction Management

Owner Representation

Bid Evaluation

Record Drawings

Construction Observation

Submittal Review

With their professionals, leadership, passion, knowledge, and energy, Caldwell Associates is one of the top architectural firms with whom we have engaged.

Robert Shepko

Balfour Beatty

Our Culture

It takes a tenacious group of passionate individuals who lead with the end in mind to tackle the successful practice of architecture.

Our team members are our most valuable asset, and the quality of the product we deliver to our clients begins with the investment in our team members and the culture we create within our office. Caldwell Architects creates a workplace where individuals thrive by encouraging collaboration, professional development, and appreciation for a dynamic group work ethic.

Engaging our staff results in people excited to come to work, passionate about the importance of their work, and appreciative of the people that surround them. Throughout the year, we plan events for our staff to gather socially to enjoy the city and its spaces – including baseball games, happy hours, volunteer projects, and even scavenger hunts. We also invest in our health and well-being, offering free classes for fitness, training, and nutrition. It can be fun to work, but it’s also fun to work out! And being able to balance work, life, and family is important for our overall well-being. The better we able to offer this in our work culture, the more productive and engaged we can be for our clients.

“This new space is nothing short of impressive.” 

Dr. Jaromy Kuhl

UWF Dean of Hal Marcus College of Science and Engineering

Our Multifaceted Team

The focus of our individual architects, designers and team members trend towards certain disciplines and aptitudes.

For some, this includes a deep understanding of construction techniques and documentation. For others, their motivations drive them to create spaces that energize and inspire, to take an environment and mold it to elicit productivity and engagement. Our support staff is dedicated to understanding the driving factors behind a project and the underlying desires of our clientele.

We invite you to contact us and discuss how Caldwell Architects can apply this diverse set of talents and personalities to bring your project to life.

“We love our facility, you guys did an amazing job!”

Karla Martin

Director, Poarch Creek Indians