Oakes Architects was founded in Santa Monica by Julie and Lee Oakes in 1987 to provide complete professional service in the field of architecture, planning, interior design and entitlement processing.

The firm specializes in a broad range of commercial, industrial and residential projects and has been actively involved in both the rehabilitation of existing structures and the construction of new facilities throughout Southern California.  The firm offers a combination of unsurpassed technical expertise and sophisticated design to assure our clients the best design solution possible.

Within the office, the Principals are assisted by a highly skilled technical and administrative support staff.  All work in the office is done on AutoCad.  Structural, Mechanical and Electrical Engineering services are contracted through the office to outside consultants.  We have established close working relationships with a number of highly respected and professionally capable Engineering Consultants in the Southern California area.  Each consultant is selected based upon his/her specific expertise and suitability to the needs of the project at hand.

With our offices on the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica for over ten years, we developed a highly regarded relationship with the City of Santa Monica.  The firm worked closely with the City of Santa Monica and the Bayside District during development of the Promenade and has continued its influence through the design of a number of high profile privately owned structures along the Promenade.  These include the completed five-story Criterion Theater Plaza, the 1318 Building, the Midnight Special Bookstore, and the 1316 Passageway Building along with a number of continuing projects and buildings.

In 1996, we relocated our offices to the historic Helms Bakery Complex in Culver City.  We are the Master Planning Architects for this eleven acre site and have won a number of awards for our restoration and innovative designs of the Jazz Bakery Jazz Club as well as a number of theaters, retail uses and artistic office/studio space within the Helms Building.

Working in an urban environment, Oakes Architects recognizes the necessity and importance of effective interactive communication techniques to deal with each and every concern during the design process.  We are extremely successful with our approach to neighborhood groups, Architectural Review Boards, Building and Planning Departments, Planning Commissions, and City Councils as part of the development process.

For over twenty nine years Oakes Architects has worked closely with many Cities in Architectural and consulting capacities.  Principals Lee and Julie have served on numerous boards, commissions, and committees for public agencies for the Cities of Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Culver City and along with Julie Oakes serving as Mayor of the City of Hermosa Beach.

We pride ourselves in providing high quality design that meets the needs of our clients and users.  Oakes Architects does not approach a project with preconceived notions, but with expertise and an open mind.  Providing service to our clients is our priority.  Our combination of an excellent reputation, wide range of successful projects and political experience gives us the advantage and distinct ability to successfully achieve the wide range of needs and goals of our clients.


Scope of Services

Oakes Architects offers a complete range of architectural and planning service including:

  • Architectural Preservation
  • Architecture
  • Bidding Coordination
  • Code and Life/Safety Upgrades
  • Construction Administration
  • Cost Estimates
  • Existing Condition Documentation
  • Entitlement Processing
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Furniture, Finishes & Equipment
  • Interior Design
  • Life Cycle Cost Analysis
  • Master Planning
  • New Construction
  • Permit Procurement
  • Programming
  • Remodeling, Renovations, Conversions, and Additions
  • Seismic Upgrades
  • Space Planning
  • Theater Design
  • Urban and Environmental Planning
  • Value Engineering