Over the last seven years, Giaimo has grown into a diverse team with expertise in architecture, design, cultural heritage, conservation, and sustainability.
OAA, CAHP, PMP
Ria is an Architect and heritage professional with a decade of international experience in design and conservation. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Canadian Association of Heritage Professionals (CAHP). Over the last seven years at Giaimo, she has overseen countless projects from concept design through construction administration. Her project delivery is intuitive. Whether it is designing an extension to a home, restoring a 15-storey heritage facade, collaborating with consultants, refreshing weary interior spaces, intensifying the city’s properties, or producing fantastical hand-drawn illustrations - she brings an extraordinary versatility to her work. Recent projects include Sunday School Lofts, August, and 211 Yonge Street where she is exploring sustainable solutions for circular construction, material salvage, and reuse that reduce building waste and embodied carbon emissions.
Ria's interest in blurring the boundaries between theory, visual arts, photography, and architectural design is evident in her academic work and continues to bring a valuable perspective to her professional practice. She has been a member of the American Society of Architectural Illustrators since 2015 where her architectural illustrations were published and recognized with three distinction awards. Her most recent group photography exhibit, Where One is Far and Gone was showcased at 401 Richmond’s Gallery 44 in Toronto.
Michelle is an Architect with five years of experience working at a range architecture, urbanism, and landscape architecture firms in Canada, the USA, France, Spain, and Indonesia. Whether collaborating on the adaptive reuse masterplan of a castle or the design of a winter sports education facility for youth, her work has focused on crafting contextual and sustainable places for community growth. At Giaimo, she’s currently working on creating new amenity spaces for residential buildings as well assessing a series of heritage properties for reuse at an Ontario university campus. Her graduate research at the University of Waterloo investigated how flood infrastructure can perpetuate social inequity and explored the interplay between top-down strategies and bottom-up tactics in resilient design.
Over the last eight years at Giaimo, Joanne has ensured that the studio is always running smoothly. She currently oversees HR and accounting, balancing the operational performance of the practice while fostering a positive and productive environment. Prior to joining Giaimo, Joanne had over a decade of diverse experience in the brokerage business, from project coordination to research and analysis.
OAA, MRAIC, CAHP
Joey brings more than 25 years of experience in the architectural, heritage and engineering professions, including an extensive portfolio in integrating design and conservation. He founded Giaimo in 2015 with an approach to architecture that sources the value and characteristics of existing buildings and spaces. This process recognizes and records the state of things as they are, and intervenes with them in respectful and sensitive ways. He thinks it is better to be less compulsive when designing. There are no hard and firm rules, the process is always open and collaborative.
Joey’s projects have received numerous awards, and during his tenure at ERA his work on the Allandale Train Station and at Casey House was acknowledged with a Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Award for Excellence in Conservation. His involvement in architecture regularly extends beyond practice. He currently serves on the City of Hamilton's Design Review Panel (DRP), and is co-author of the award winning "Vancouver Matters", a book that takes a critical stance on the city’s acclaimed urbanism. For over seven years, he has been an instructor in the Department of Architectural Science at Toronto Metropolitan University (previously Ryerson) where he leads courses and studios on building reuse and conservation, and has been a visiting critic and thesis advisor for several academic institutions including the University of British Columbia, OCAD University and the University of Waterloo.
Stephanie is a strategist and designer with a diverse background in architectural history and theory, digital media, and environmental and technology studies. As Creative Director, she oversees strategic planning, business development, project management, and communications, while collaborating with the studio on design and research. Her current projects and research focus on community placemaking and cultural heritage, leveraging existing infrastructure, and exploring deconstruction, salvage, and re-use as a sustainable alternative to demolition in Ontario.
She has nine years of unique experience in the city-building industry, from working for heritage non-profits and design firms to real estate developers and tech start-ups. She is passionate about advocating for sustainability in the built environment, and currently serves as the President of Architectural Conservancy Ontario (ACO)’s Toronto Branch. She is also a professional member of the Canadian Association of Heritage Professionals (CAHP), a member of the Downtown Yonge Business Improvement Area (BIA) Board of Directors, sits on the Society for the Study of Architecture in Canada (SSAC) Diversity, Equity, Inclusivity, and Sustainability Committee, and a past member of City of Toronto’s Montgomery’s Inn Museum Art Committee.
Mitchell is an architect, heritage professional, and project manager with a decade of experience in design and conservation projects across Ontario. Over the last eight years at Giaimo, his work has focused on exploring the relationships between new and existing architectures. From restoring designated heritage buildings and designing complex brewery additions, to renovating retail spaces, developing custom CNC fabricated truss gusset plates, and Nuit Blanche laneway spectacles, Mitchell brings significant knowledge, respect, and creativity to the profession. His current work focuses on embodied carbon, life cycle assessments, and sustainable alternatives to building demolition.
Prior to joining Giaimo, he worked with Professors Marco Polo and Colin Ripley at Ryerson University to research and document Canada’s Centennial projects where his work formed part of the exhibition Architecture and National Identity: The Centennial Projects 50 Years On. His commitment to design excellence is evident in the number of award-winning buildings he’s contributed to, including the Conestoga College Student Recreation Centre (MJMA), Allandale Train Station (ERA Architects), and South House (Giaimo). He has also led a series of research initiatives at Giaimo, which have been presented at the Society for the Study of Architecture in Canada (SSAC) annual conferences.
Shanze is an Intern Architect committed to creating contextually and historically meaningful spaces. Her experience at a range of conservation, architecture, and visualization firms in Toronto has resulted in a portfolio that blends innovative design with sensitive solutions. With an interest in adaptive reuse, urbanization, and sustainability, Shanze has worked on a diverse range of projects at Giaimo such as the feasibility study, massing, programming development, and concept design for an infill project on a heritage site in Ontario. Her creativity extends beyond architecture into the visual arts, as seen in her painting, drawing, and ceramic art work.
Sara is an Architectural Designer with international study experience in China, Germany, Italy, and Canada. With a Bachelor of Architectural Science from Toronto Metropolitan University, she contributes to a range of projects at Giaimo from residential renovations, building condition assessments, and conservation plans to design exhibits and heritage interpretation installations. She’s also pursuing a Certificate in Digital Photography from George Brown College and assists the studio with content creation, visual communications, and award submissions. Passionate about heritage conservation, Sara volunteers for the non-profit Architectural Conservancy Ontario (ACO), serves as the ACO NextGen Vice Chair. As TMU alumnus, Sara collaborates with students, faculty, and staff at the Department of Architectural Science's EDI Committee to identify, evaluate and resolve EDI barriers inside and outside of the classroom.
Trevor is an Intern Architect with over five years of experience working at architecture firms across Canada. His experience on projects ranges in scale from exhibition and furniture design to public works and transit infrastructure. From the restoration of an antique boat to the adaptive reuse of a century-old school building, Trevor is interested in how quality design and craftsmanship can prolong a building’s lifespan and bring new value to existing objects, structures, and places.
At the University of British Columbia, his graduate project proposed the adaptive reuse of an abandoned garbage incinerator to facilitate circular waste economies and promote community engagement. Since joining Giaimo in 2021, Trevor has worked on a range of projects including the revitalization of 21 Dundas Square, renovations of a heritage building for University of Toronto, and a Cultural Hub Feasibility Study for the City of Oshawa.