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The latest in a series of practice profiles looking at architects who have recently decided to go it alone either through choice or redundancy

STARC-ARCHITECTS, Waterloo, London

Founded: October 2012

Main people: Silke Trimborn and Paul Birch

Where have you come from? We worked together for 10 years at Hamiltons Architects.

What work do you have? We are working on a variety of projects, including a residential scheme in London (pictured), an osteopathy and physiotherapy clinic in London and an interior for Bradford’s One in a Million free school.

What are your ambitions? Our Waterloo studio works very well. Ideally we will remain here and expand to maybe 15 people, but there is no rush. We see ourselves as an extension to the client’s team and want to maintain a personal involvement on all projects. We aim for high-quality, affordable design with attention to detail, efficient turnaround times and always within budget.

What are the biggest challenges facing yourself as a start-up and the profession generally? We have been positively surprised by how much support and projects we have received since starting the practice. While there is, of course, talk about the recession, we have experienced a refreshing uplift and optimism, reflected in a variety of projects.

Which scheme in the past five years has inspired you most? St Kolumba in Cologne, by Peter Zumthor

How do you market yourself? With little time available for competitions, our marketing is primarily based on contacts.

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