Cecil to retire from Harriman - Innes and Shah to take on leadership

October 11, 2019 - Front Section

Boston, MA According to Harriman, Steve Cecil, AIA, ASLA will retire this month. Cecil joined Harriman in 2015 when The Cecil Group merged with Harriman Associates. Cecil was the founder of The Cecil Group, an award-winning multidisciplinary design and planning firm, and he assisted clients throughout New England with complex land use, urban design, and planning projects. The Cecil Group merger with Harriman brought an added dimension to Harriman’s architecture and engineering studios. 

“We are excited for Steve and celebrate the significant contributions he has made to Harriman and to the design and planning community in New England,” said Clif Greim, president of Harriman. “The depth and breadth of the portfolio Steve built during his career is extraordinary.” 

As Cecil retires, Harriman is pleased to recognize the co-leaders of their urban design and planning studio: Emily Keys Innes, AICP, LEED AP ND, director of planning, and Kartik Shah, AICP, LEED AP, director of urban design. Innes and Shah have been working with Cecil over the past few months to transfer the leadership of the studio prior to his retirement. This includes the move of the Boston office to a newly renovated historic building at 19 Kingston St., near South Station. This office includes the UDP Studio, landscape architects, architects, and civil engineers.

Cecil has had a tremendous impact on communities throughout New England and nationally. Over his career he has advised an entire generation of community leaders, planners, and stakeholders. 

He has helped numerous towns and communities overcome the challenges of a vibrant and growing region, advising them on how to leverage their existing assets and recognize their unique qualities, with a philosophy of putting places together through multi-disciplinary collaborations. Some of his most notable contributions include the master plan for Assembly Sq., which set the stage for that thriving mixed-use district in Somerville, and the Fairmount Indigo Corridor Plan in Boston. He organized and conducted national planning initiatives for electric vehicles and bus rapid transit systems. His focus on waterfronts encompassed planning and design of ferry terminals, parks, and port and waterfront redevelopment through the U.S. 

“It has been a privilege to work with and learn from Steve,” said Innes. “He will be available after his formal retirement to collaborate with Harriman on specific projects.”

Shah said, “Steve’s deep appreciation for New England is a common thread throughout our work and is a key component in how he has worked with communities to solve complex problems.”

Innes and Shah and their colleagues throughout Harriman will provide expertise on all aspects of the built environment, including urban design, waterfront planning, transit-oriented development, master and comprehensive plans, urban and downtown revitalization, climate resiliency, architecture, sustainable design, and engineering. Harriman’s services cover land use planning and regulations, conceptual design, construction documents, and the final built structures and integrated landscape. 



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