Ladies Build Day

November 25th, 2015

The ladies of Bergland + Cram got out of the office recently to experience the flip side of architecture and design….CONSTRUCTION!

We donned our safety goggles and ventured to Clear Lake to spend a day working on the Habitat for Humanity house for the Gerhardt family. While the weather outside was frightful (first snowstorm of the year), the drywall finishing inside was so delightful (thanks to some serious space heaters). We learned taping and mudding techniques and made a huge dent in the walls and ceilings. Figuratively, not literally of course – we want to be invited back!

Bergland + Cram believes in the investment of time and talent to build up our community and raise awareness for causes we believe in. Habitat for Humanity of North Central Iowa provides home ownership to area families in need by building safe, decent, and affordable housing. Construction of Habitat homes relies on the help of volunteers of all backgrounds and experience levels. Rick Wyborny, on site supervisor, does a great job of teaching a variety of skills on site.

As of 2015, our local Habitat for Humanity has completed homes for 45 families and five home repair projects throughout a six county region. Contact them if you would like to try your hand at swinging a hammer for a good cause. Find out more here.

“Volunteering is rewarding and this task in particular was very therapeutic,” says Dana Thomas, Interior Designer with B+C. “We might have had a bit of a kink in our necks at the end of the day, but we all agree it was so worth it!”

It’s always great to get out from behind our desks and have a hand in shaping a space, in contrast to drawing and 3D modeling back at the office. We look forward to more hands on adventures in the field!

Little Free Library Celebrates a Year of Free Books

October 13th, 2015

Little Free LibraryDuring the summer of 2014, Bergland + Cram partnered with Hoover Elementary in Mason City, IA to design and build a Little Free Library (LFL). B+C began the process by speaking with school children about their thoughts on books, libraries, and ideal reading spaces. The firm explored schemes and refined a design concept that became much more than the traditional box on a post. The end result is a custom, kid-scaled structure which houses books at various levels and has a built-in reading bench.

“When Principal Barbara Wells approached us to assist with this project, we brushed up on the concept since it was relatively new to us,” said Senior Project Manager Joe Anderson. “After a little research, we decided that such a great sharing amenity for our local school system deserved to be more than just an exchange. It should be a destination for the school and neighborhood to interact. It was also a chance to put down our pencils and get our hands dirty with swinging hammers, welding, and pouring concrete.”

One year later the library is still going strong. “It’s exciting to see students riding their bikes and stopping here to check out the latest available books,” said Principal Wells. “I recently talked with two students and one of them shared that she likes to take books home to read to her brother.”

Because the library has been so well received, the district is exploring options to build more at other schools.

For more information or to locate a LFL near you, visit

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Newton Historic District Design Guidelines

September 18th, 2015

Working with various entities in Newton, Iowa, Bergland + Cram produced a comprehensive guideline document for their community as it undertakes rehabilitation within it’s recently designated downtown historic district.  Downtown Newton blossomed and changed dramatically at the height of Maytag’s success in the 1950’s and 60’s.  A healthy dose of mid-century buildings mixed with historic storefronts and churches from the turn of the century line the courtyard square, creating a broad and varied downtown aesthetic.  The Newton Historic District Design Guidelines aim to educate local building owners about the importance and techniques behind rehabilitating their individual properties while preserving the valuable collective asset of their Main Street community.

Historic Preservation in Newton, Iowa

August 19th, 2015

The City of Newton and the Newton Historic Preservation Commission are currently partnered with Bergland + Cram to create Downtown Historic Preservation Design Guidelines for property owners within Newton’s Historic Downtown and Main Street Districts.

Kristy King and Scott Borcherding have been meeting with city officials, community members, and business owners to gather ideas and present draft versions for feedback.

In designing the guidelines, Bergland + Cram has taken into account the important pieces of Newton including the many aspects and styles of architecture within the districts, it’s Get to Know Newton brand, and the impact of Maytag Corporation on the downtown.

“Newton has many mid-century modern buildings which reflect one of its boom times, but there are interesting things from all eras” says King.  “It’s been a pleasure getting to know the community and provide something that will help them preserve their uniqueness.”

You Are Here

February 16th, 2015

Bergland + Cram is a growing firm with lots of great projects on the horizon.  We’re looking to expand our team with individuals who share our unique and fun approach to architecture.  Are you the next big thing at B+C? View job postings.

Home Show

February 6th, 2015

Join us!  Andy Meyer, AIA will be holding down the fort at the Rochester Home Show this weekend – looking to team with folks who desire a home, not just a house. Andy is a B+C principal, registered architect, LEED Professional, bona fide pilot, official family guy, obvious overachiever, and all around swell guy.  Stop by and pick his brain about residential design or anything really.  He’d love some company at booth #247.

Lynch Joins Emerging Professionals Committee

January 12th, 2015

Our very own Intern Architect Laura Lynch, Associate AIA, has been nominated to the American Institute of Architects Central States Region Emerging Professionals Committee.

The Emerging Professionals Committee is a national organization focusing on career development for architecture students, graduates, and recently-licensed architects.  The Central States Region encompasses Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and Oklahoma.

Beginning a two year term in January 2015, Lynch will serve as the Iowa Associate Representative.  She will work to create opportunities for emerging professionals in licensure, policy making, professional development and networking.  The committee partners with AIA National, regional Universities, and existing practices.

Lynch has been with Bergland + Cram since March 2014.  She is off to a great start and we look forward to what the future holds for this young professional!

Join the Best Team Around

November 10th, 2014

Do you remember why you got into architecture?  Was it your love for shop drawing review?  Late night meetings?  The smell of old plans disintegrating on your desk?

While there are many necessary tasks in our profession – the opportunity to design and manage a project from conception to reality continues to be a primary motivator for many of us.

As a mid size firm, Bergland + Cram relies on and encourages individual staff members to plan, lead, and collaborate with one another every day.  We currently seek to hire an architect in training or registered architect with 5 or more years of experience who is eager to join a dynamic workplace and community.  Our next ideal team member will be self-motivated to work independently and within a group, charged with direct oversight of design and project management.  Experience in healthcare projects and changing plotter paper is a definite plus.  Revit proficiency is a requirement.

Please email or mail your cover letter and resume/portfolio to our brave leader as listed below.  Relocation assistance available.

Bergland + Cram

Attn: Scott Smed

1002 E State Street

Mason City, IA 50401

Bailey Earns Certification

July 31st, 2014

Justin Bailey has passed the Lean Mastery for Healthcare Examination, which signifies that he has met the standards for education and examination for lean healthcare design. Bailey has been a part of Bergland + Cram since 2011 and plays a key role in project management and 3D renderings. His technical and creative talents are an asset to many education and healthcare projects within the firm. Congrats, Justin!

LFL Ribbon Cutting

June 9th, 2014

An exciting last day of the school year for Hoover Elementary School in Mason City! This morning, the ribbon was cut to signify the opening of the Little Free Library. Faculty and parents were there to watch as students and our design team filled the Little Free Library with an abundance books. It was quite the celebration and we were so happy to be a part of it!

Bergland + Cram partnered with Mason City Community Schools and Hoover Elementary to create an outdoor, free-standing library with the concept of “take a book, give a book”. With this new development, the community is welcome to enjoy the sharing of books and to encourage both young and old to read. It has been a great journey creating together a place where children in the community have access to free books.