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After more than a century, New Jersey architects close the door

Grad Associates, a Newark, New Jersey-based firm that contributed buildings to the skyline of that city as well as New York City and Washington, D.C. closed last month after succumbing to economic pressures, according to published reports.

Founded in 1906 and once the state’s largest architecture firm, Grad Associates designed skyscrapers, symphony houses and sports arenas – such as the Essex House Hotel in New York’ City and the US Department of Defense’s Forrestal Building complex in Washington, D.C. The firm also designed major projects in New Jersey from federal courthouses, office towers and theaters.

"We had a lot of development projects, and they all quickly started canceling," Allen Trousdale, a principal told the Star-Ledger of Newark, NJ "We had an overhead. It didn’t look as through the market would be any better perhaps until 2011, at best."

The recession has led to the closure of small firms to some of the more storied names in the business - Boston-based Cubellis closed in late 2009 and Yamasaki Associates, designers of the World Trade Center and based in Troy, Michigan, closed in early January.Looney Ricks Kiss, a Memphis, Tennessee-based firm known for its work in new urbanism, filed for bankruptcy in February.

Jennifer Potash
News Editor

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