Steve Webb — Webb Yates

Steve founded Webb Yates Engineers with Andy Yates in 2005.

He started his career as a site engineer for the Jubilee Line Extension, gaining first-hand experience of site issues and subterranean construction in London. He went on to work at Whitby Bird and Sinclair Knight Merz and Santiago Calatrava, where he worked on prestigious projects including Wembley Arena and the Turning Torso tower in Sweden, a 58 storey residential tower with a dramatic twisting form achieved with a hybrid steel and concrete frame.

Steve is interested in combining imagination with technical rigour to create artful and inventive structural designs. Since founding the company, he has led a number of prestigious and multi award-winning projects including 15 Clerkenwell Close, The Kantor Centre of Excellence for the Anna Freud Centre and The Hoover Building.

Steve has pioneered the practice’s approach to innovation and sustainability. Encouraging the use of non-conventional materials, from cast iron to cork and from inflatables to stone, to design low carbon and environmentally conscious structures.

Steve also regularly lectures at universities and events, has taught at the AA, RCA, and the Bartlett, has written for industry magazines including BD and the RIBAJ, and has judged various awards including for the RIBA and iStructE.

Webb Yates Engineers emphasise the importance of “unbounded collaboration”, championing the relationship between engineers and architects to realise striking and ambitious projects. Anise Workshop is also a space that we hope will encourage collaborations between disciplines and creative practices. What advice with you give to those who want to encourage such relationships through their own design practices?

I’d say:

  1. Have less ego.
  2. Think about what the project (and society) needs rather than what you want to build.
  3. Try to really listen to and properly understand co-collaborators even if it takes a lot of questions and discussion.