VergesRome Architects | New Orleans Architectural Firm

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Steven H. Rome, AIA

Principal Partner

Leading with tremendous energy, a comprehensive outlook, and over 40 years of solid experience, Steve Rome draws on the diverse opportunities of his past to influence his architecture and design. As principal of VergesRome Architects and former principal of Rome Architecture and Interiors, Steve works to showcase quality design in tandem with the best product for the price.

An architect and designer respected for his leadership skills, Steve Rome makes projects happen. He has a great ability to neutralize and focus large groups, endure and overcome obstacles, and always find a solution. Through early project work in exhibit design, hospitality, and retail planning and design, such as Riverwalk Marketplace, Ogden Museum of Southern Art, and the 1984 Louisiana World Exposition, Steve learned invaluable skills as an interpreter. He knows how to tell the client’s story. In addition, these assignments taught him how to set design direction early in the process, and that the design must support the operations.

Complementing his design experiences, Steve Rome has also been in the owner’s shoes, having managed some of the largest projects in New Orleans history. Extensive planning and program management experience taught Steve how to marry vision and mechanics. These include early plans for the Audubon Institute Insectarium and Riverfront Park; Audubon Center for the Research of Endangered Species/Species Survival Center Lodge; Audubon Aquarium of the Americas; Audubon Animal Healthcare Center; and Tad Gormley Stadium’s fast-track renovation/addition for the 1992 US Olympic Track and Field Trials. Such a background affords Steve a strong business ethic. He has respect for budgets, understands the reality of executing projects, and can communicate from a business standpoint to resolve problems. In 1997, Steve Rome was retained by the Governor’s Advisory Board and Louisiana Supreme Court to assist in determining the most feasible location for Louisiana’s highest court – after 15 years of governmental indecision on the issue. Historical documents were compiled to create a booklet, presented to the legislative assembly as an impartial recommendation to keep the Supreme Court in New Orleans, returning it to its former home and original splendor at the historic but neglected Beaux Arts courthouse at 400 Royal Street. In 2004 Mr. Rome implemented a $5M Interiors, Furniture & Furnishings program for the $32M renovation, utilizing GSA purchasing schedules, saving the State of Louisiana over $1M, while responding to the Prime Architect’s fast-track RFI’s and coordinating delivery and installation schedules.

Mr. Rome’s current work for VRA reflects these early design and management lessons, combining energy, quality design, and business savvy. Steve’s recent focus includes Campus Facility Strategic Planning and the renovation of historic Vianney Hall at Saint Joseph Seminary College near Covington. The recently completed Rouquette Library is the first new construction on the historic campus since 1960. Steve has designed another library, now under construction, for the City of New Orleans and New Orleans Public Library system, as part of an extensive renovation and revitalization of the Allie Mae Williams Community Center in Central City. Completed under Mr. Rome’s direction is the $5.5 Million renovation/expansion of Christian Brothers School in New Orleans’ historic City Park. In designing the school’s first new building in its history, Mr. Rome respected the existing school’s architecture and preserved the natural assets of the school’s park setting. Mr. Rome is also Director of Design for the New Orleans Science and Math High School in Mid-City, currently under construction.

Originally from Houma and now a resident of Covington, Steve Rome received a Bachelor of Architecture from LSU in 1981, and his MBA from Tulane University in 1992. He actively participates each year in professional development courses at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, including Master Planning: Moving toward a Sustainable City; Planning and Design of Public Libraries; and Retail Principles for New Urban Communities, Historic Downtowns, and Suburban Retrofitting. Steve studied for a semester at the University of London Goldsmiths College, returning to Europe after graduation as an international tour guide.

Memberships: American Institute of Architects

Louisiana State University, 1981, Bachelor of Architecture
Tulane University, A.B. Freeman School of Business, 1992, Master of Business Administration

Registered to practice in Louisiana, Mississippi, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Colorado and Texas.