Natasha Edwards

Project Manager/Project Architect at Little Diversified Architectural Consulting, Charlotte, NC

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, UNC Asheville (2006)
Master of Architecture, UNC Charlotte (2009)

Hometown: Oak Park, Illinois

Natasha Creticos Edwards, AIA, NCARB, has been with the Charlotte office of Little Diversified Architectural Consulting for nine years. She was recently named to the Charlotte Business Journal’s annual “40 under 40” list.

Describe your most important/interesting recent and/or current projects
I just got finished doing a headquarters for an international company. The project is here in Charlotte. It was an interior renovation project, and while not huge in square footage (about 10,000 square feet), I loved getting to know my client and their work culture. I’m so excited for them to take over their new space in the next couple of weeks!

How did your education at UNC Charlotte prepare/shape you?
I learned so much at UNC Charlotte, but I think the most important thing I learned was how to become a problem solver and critical thinker.

Last year you received the “Citizen Architect” award from AIA Charlotte. What does that award mean to you? 
The Citizen Architect award really means a whole lot to me! Being involved with the Matthews Planning Board and sub-committee for Affordable Housing in Matthews is something I take great pride in. I love being able to use my professional education to give back to my community. This year, I was also asked to join the Silver Line Task Force Advisory Board. We are reviewing the proposed line for the Matthews area and will advise Town Council in November. I am honored to be a part of that endeavor as well!

What is the role of the architect/designer in the civic sphere?
I think the role of an architecture in the civic sphere is to be an educator. We have to be a sort of a “master of all trades” because we coordinate with so many other disciplines to get a building designed and built. With that, we gain a plethora of knowledge. On a daily practicing architect level, we use this knowledge to educate our clients on things like sustainable design or new practices to keep their employees safe during COVID, just to name a few. We also have the opportunity to shape our communities by being directly involved in them, like architectural review boards or other commissions.

In what ways would you like to see architecture/design help shape Charlotte’s future?
I would like to see architecture and design further the placemaking of Charlotte, whether that is through buildings or open spaces, like parks and community areas. Even though we do have a very large tree canopy, we also lack in parks, especially toward the Uptown Charlotte area. I also would like to see a continuation toward green building, and making sure that we are being good stewards to the planet. Finally, I would like to see design help create more equitable spaces. I think the new Silver Line would be a great place to start, since it can give us the ability to combine housing, commercial spaces, and public transit.