| Architecture

The Harvester

We worked with a collaborative team of engineers, as well as performance and stage specialists to develop the Harvester Performance Hall. Additionally, we provided historic tax credit assistance and grant writing for this space. The performance venue serves as the northern anchor of Southwestern Virginia’s Crooked Road Music Trail.

The Harvester Performance Center - Design by Hill Studio

The building

The International Harvester Dealership, a franchise established by the famous industrial designer, Raymond Loewy, previously occupied this downtown Rocky Mount building.

The Harvester Performance Center Interior - Design by Hill Studio

The Room

An intimate spot for both performer and audience, The Harvester is a unique cultural experience. 

The Harvester Performance Center Live Concert - Design by Hill Studio

The Acts

Today, the Harvester is a well-known spot for famous acts, including The Indigo Girls, Buddy Guy, Keb 'Mo', The Wailers, The Bacon Brothers.

Roland Cook Apartments

Just blocks from downtown Vinton, this abandoned 1918 school exhibited exceptional redevelopment potential. We worked with related company Old School Partners to program this building, and design and develop it as a community-building project, stabilizing the neighborhood and providing market-rate housing in this well-loved community facility.

Roland Cook Lofts in Vinton - Design by Hill Studio

the history

The 1915 Classical-Revival school originally accommodated all grades. In 1933, the school became an elementary school when the town constructed William Byrd High School to accommodate a rapidly growing population. Several Roanoke Valley leaders got their start right here. Wayne Newton, “Mr. Las Vegas”,  rehearsed his early performances on the Roland’s stage. Several former students have returned as residents.

Roland Cook Lofts in Vinton - Design by Hill Studio

The character

The historic renovation restored the high ceilings and paned windows, providing views across the Roanoke Valley and drenching the rooms with sunlight.

Roland Cook Lofts in Vinton - Design by Hill Studio

the amenities

All apartments enjoy new amenities and green design elements. They also feature the old chalkboards, which were returned to the rooms during construction.

High Knob Tower

The U.S. Forest Service hired us to design a new fire tower to replace the original tower which previously burned down. Our new tower meets the needs of the Forest Service while serving as an area landmark. Visitors can take in a 360-degree view of the Appalachian Mountains from the top of the tower.

Hill Studio 2-.jpg

The height

Rising almost 50 feet from the parking lot, we provided an accessible route to the top of the tower along a sinuous ramp.  


the knob

We seized the opportunity to develop an accessible trail that enhanced the visitor experience from parking the car to reaching the tower.   


The tower

Along the walk, the experience changes along with the scenery, culminating at the pinnacle, from which views extend for miles into the Appalachian Mountains.