contact us at:, (312) 421-0288

1945 West Race, Chicago, Illinois 60622

Rashmi Ramaswamy:, (312) 731-4832

Mike Newman:, (773) 251-6396

SHED Studio
(Sustainable, Humane and Experimental Design Studio)

After over a decade each of working in Chicago, Mike Newman and Rashmi Ramaswamy have come together to form SHED Studio, a partnership with a commitment to sustainability, social justice issues and innovation in design. Their diverse, yet related architectural backgrounds have provided them a wealth of experience ranging from master planning to furniture design. They have each served clients in both the public and private sector, and work extensively with non-for-profit clients.

SHED Studio's expertise is in using a participatory community-based process to work with a diverse group of clients, and develop solutions that not only meet needs but respond in a multi-dimensional way to the mission of the client and the community. Mike and Rashmi feel inspired by their clients, and enjoy the dialogue and discourse that the collaborative process generates, which eventually leads to the most innovative, sensitive and aesthetic solutions.

(click here to download the SHED bio PDF)

Selected Project List

Housing Opportunities for Women (HOW) - Office Renovation:
Interior renovation of 9,000 s.f. space in Rogers Park, Chicago for administrative offices, counseling, community activities and meetings, using green principles. Construction was completed in 2006.

Growing Home - Urban Farm and Green House:
Design for an urban farm 26,000 s.f. site in Englewood, Chicago, including hoop houses, green house, classrooms, and administrative offices to be used to provide job-training to homeless men and women. Design includes alternative energy sources and elements for participation by the community and overall flexibility. Construction of Phase 1 is complete.

Jane Addams Development Corporation - Incubator space, Adaptive Reuse:
Renovation of a 20,000 s.f. industrial building in West Garfield Park, Chicago into multi-tenant building to incubate and assist small & local business growth. Services include employer/employee training, job placement, business expansion programs and other similar resources. Construction is in progress.

Residence Addition, Lagrange Park, Illinois:
Second story addition to existing bungalow, to include 3 additional bedrooms and bathrooms. Renovation also includes expansion of kitchen on first floor. Construction is complete.

Park Regency Senior Apartments, 110 unit Senior Housing, Indianapolis
Construction Administration for renovation of a 1980's senior housing project.

Gardening Entrepreneurial Training (G.E.T. Inc.) - House Addition:
One-Story addition to town house residence in Jackson Park, Chicago to include new master bedroom and bathroom, expanded kitchen and outdoor deck. Organization provides job-training in construction trades to individuals from the neighborhood. Construction is in progress.

Spec House/ New Residence:
Design of two new residences in Chicago, a high end spec. home for a developer, a single-family home for a home owner, both using green principals. Anticipated construction in summer 2007.

Bethel New Life - Green Parking Lot/Play Lot:
Green design for a parking lot/playlot in West Garfield Park, Chicago to incorporate porous paving materials, bio-swales and other water management strategies. Design is in progress.

Center for Urban Transformation (C.U.T) - Produce Markets/Stands:
Design of prototypes for produce stands, carts, stalls and markets for providing food options to the community as well as generate economic growth and provide job training. Produce stand prototype to be built in 2007.

Housing Opportunities for Women (HOW), Jonquil - Affordable Housing Renovation: Exterior and limited interior rehabilitation of existing 25 unit building in Rogers Park, Chicago to accommodate existing and new Section 8 residents. Renovation to comply with IHDA (Illinois Housing Development Authority) standards and Cook County Class 9 requirements, and to address accessibility issues.

Modular Housing Prototype (MOD):
Design of prototypes for live/work, co-housing in upfill and infill sites in Chicago, oriented towards a bike-friendly community. Design is based on modularity and green building principles.

ICF Homes Prototype:
Design of prototypes for single family, two-flat and six-flat residences using ICF systems (insulated concrete forms) conforming to New Homes for Chicago standards.

Housing Opportunities for Women (HOW) - Master Planning and Affordable Housing Renovation
Master planning and design for the renovation of 44 units in 3 existing buildings in Rogers Park, Chicago. Design focusses on a sheltered courtyard/entrance which both enhances security and allows for interaction between the community.

Extreme Makeover Home Edition : Season 4, Episode 12:
Green consultants on design team in the "green-build" renovation of an existing single family home in North Lawndale, Chicago . Episode aired in January 2007.

Howard Ashland RFP, Rogers Park, Chicago:
Response to an RFP for Howard and Ashland in Rogers Park, initiated by HOW (Housing Opportunities for Women) to design a mixed-use complex accommodating housing, commercial space, and community/office space for non-profit agencies. This RFP was an opportunity to join forces with Michaels Development.

Mike Newman:

select previous projects:
Tryon Farm:
A 150 unit development based on sustainable planning and innovative design and construction principles. Mike was the lead architect and coordinated construction and development over-site. This project has been recognized for its design and green principles.

9001 South Commercial : Mixed Use Rehab:
Rehab for a Chicago non-profit developer on the South side of Chicago with 16 affordable housing units and two retail outlets at the ground floor. Unusual upper floor layouts with mezzanines and double height spaces resulting from the existing shell structure and former ballroom created an opportunity for the inclusion of two extra units.

Senior Housing Building:
A 58 unit senior housing project in a gutted mid-rise masonry building on the north side of Chicago, for a non-profit affordable housing developer.

Shoe Factory Lofts:
An inventive project in large warehouse building in Elgin, Illinois that uses an unusual "townhouse" layout to work within the strange shape of the original building.

New Buffalo gallery and studio that both fit into its neighborhood as well have a unique fašade created by the unusual metal siding and slot windows with an expressed bowstring truss.

Rashmi Ramaswamy:

select previous projects:
Lawrence Hall Youth Services:
Design and development of $30 million campus including residential, school and administrative buildings. Rashmi participated in all phases of this multi-year design process and coordinated the design of the interior elements. Other projects with the same client included rehabilitation and renovation of several buildings into group homes.

Wrigley Building:
$34 million master plan for renovation of street level spaces, lobbies, entries and pedestrian plaza of the historic Wrigley Building. Rashmi served as project manager for this project, and several other commercial projects of smaller scale in this building including retail, office and lobby renovations.

Westside Planning and Development:
Renovation of an existing 25,000 s.f. commercial building into a full service daycare center as part of Chicago Department of Planning Empowerment Zone development. Rashmi coordinated the design, preparation of documents and served as the project manager during the construction phase.

St. Clement Chapel & School:
Renovation of existing chapel at St. Clement Church in Chicago into multi-purposes spaces that can accommodate functions such as a soup kitchen and other activities in addition to worship spaces. Renovation of cafeteria and Parish Center in the school building.

Deborah's Place:
Renovation of existing convent in Chicago into transitional shelter for women. Project included sheltered entry and courtyard and facilities such as library, resource center and commercial kitchen.

People's Reinvestment and Development Effort (PRIDE):
Renovations to apartment building for a 63 unit HUD 202 senior housing project.


Britt Shawver
Executive Director
Housing Opportunities for Women
1607 West Howard
Chicago Illinois
(773) 465-5770

Harry Rhodes
Executive Director
Growing Home
1325 S. Wabash
Chicago Illinois
(773) 539-1336

Laura Zumdahl
Associate Executive Director
Cabrini Green Legal Aid Clinic
740 North Milwaukee Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60642
(312) 738-2452