It’s Moya Design Partners’ second anniversary, and we’re extremely proud of YOU — our staff, colleagues, clients, and friends — for all your hard work and successes this year. The firm’s second year has been filled with exciting milestones, new and old friendships, and our signature focus on improving lives through design. Here are some architecture, interiors, and visual design highlights from MOYA’s second year!
  • Success in The Government of Jamaica: Houses of Parliament Design Competition: In February, the MOYA team were Interior Design Team Finalists for Jamaica’s Houses of Parliament Design Competition in partnership with Guenet Anderson.
  • Completion of the MOYA-designed Downtown Day Services Center at New York Avenue Presbyterian Church. The Center received wide acclaim and was featured by editor Martin Moeller in Architecture D.C. magazine.
  • Exhibition design for Unlocking Inclusion at the Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools Conference in San Diego and the prestigious SXSW EDU conference in Austin, TX.
  • Completion of the Elizabeth Seton High School Auditorium. With the auditorium finished, we’re working on a new elevator addition that will achieve Seton’s goal of becoming a more accessible community.
  • Completion of the design phase for Eastern Market Metro Park: refining and implementing the master plan for a new town square for DC’s Capitol Hill. Phase 1 construction starts soon!
  • Construction of Diane’s House, a four-story multifamily, affordable housing complex for women who are veterans, victims of domestic violence, recovering and returning citizens. Diane’s House is scheduled to open in Spring/Summer of this year.
The year began with international excitement when we learned that our team’s interiors proposal, in partnership with Guenet Anderson, was shortlisted in the Government of Jamaica’s Houses of Parliament Design Competition. Our proposal capitalized on the ever-present breezes, tree groves, and sloping landscapes of Kingston by emphasizing sun, shade, shelter, and permeability, as well as celebrating the colors and shape of the Jamaican flag.
In February,  MOYA came together with the downtown community and Mayor Muriel Bowser to celebrate the grand opening  of Washington, DC’s new Downtown Day Services Center for individuals experiencing homelessness. The Center includes warm, welcoming interiors by Moya Design Partners. It is operated by the DowntownDC Business Improvement District (BID) with support from the DC Department of Human Services and services from Pathways to Housing DC and HIPS. Thanks to Architecture D.C. magazine, Curbed DC, WTOP, NBC Washington, the Washington Post Express, and others for covering this important DC event!
Eastern Market Metro Park continued to be a major focus for the MOYA team this year. MOYA completed the project’s master plan refinement, and DC DGS/DPR plan to kick off construction in the next few weeks. We’re working with LandDesignHPODDOTCFADCPLNCPC, OP, NPS, Keystone Plus Construction, and diverse community stakeholders on a thriving new town square for Capitol Hill.
More 2019 highlights included work for all our valued new and repeat clients: Special Olympics, Elizabeth Seton High SchoolDCBIASpace+ by WashREITPaoli Law FirmDC Public SchoolsPGCPS, ZERO TO THREEWonders Early Learning, Vega Development Group, DowntownDC BID, MVT CID, Bread for the World, Argos Group, DC Housing Authority, MRP Realty, Perkins Eastman DC, Flaherty & Collins, Trammell Crow, Loudoun County Public Schools, HR&A Advisors, DCPS, OMA, Events DC, 20 Degrees, CentroNía, and Bard High School Early College.

“Great work is done by people who are not afraid to take on leadership.”

Moya Design Partners was founded by CEO and humanitarian designer Paola Moya. The firm has focused interests in both business leadership and philanthropy. At the start of 2019, the Washington Business Journal honored Paola among eight first-generation immigrant DC entrepreneurs: Mavis MbiSonny KakarIrma Becerra FernandezAndy ShallalIvan Iricanin, and Henok Tesfaye by featuring them on the cover of the 2019 Book of Lists. Soon after, Paola was excited and honored to be recognized by Walker’s Legacy as a Walker’s Legacy Power15 DC honoree. Paola joined 150 leading businesswomen from across the nation as part of the Walker’s Legacy Power 150.
In September, Building Design + Construction magazine named Paola a Top “40 Under 40” among “AEC stars” who are making their mark in business, philanthropy, and in their communities.
Since then, Paola has been attending Leadership Greater Washington’s Signature Program as part of the LGW class of 2020. In November, Paola graduated from the Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative Education-Scaling Program, a seven-week immersive with the Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative research team.
Also in November, Paola shared  her knowledge and experience with students in the Liberty’s Promise program at Northwood High School in Silver Spring, Maryland. Paola discussed in Spanish how students can build their school portfolio, how to interview with potential employers, and how to invest in their education and professional paths.
Our focus on philanthropy defined the latter half of 2019. On October 15th, Moya Design Partners joined with the DowntownDC Business Improvement District (BID) to host our very first Art After Dark event, “Transitions” — showcasing the artwork of local artist Hector J. Torres with entertainment by Venezuelan American musician Jonathan Acosta.  Art After Dark is a twice-annual evening event to engage the community, support local artists, celebrate diversity in art, and raise funds for housing solutions for DC individuals experiencing homelessness.
“I am excited to introduce Art After Dark, where our city can come together to celebrate great art, support local artists, and raise funds for DC’s homeless population,” said Paola Moya, CEO. “This event showcases diversity in art, which is important to me as a Colombian American and the owner of a diverse DC design studio.”
Art After Dark SOLD OUT in its first year. But don’t worry! Our next event is in the works for Spring 2020. Keep up with MOYA’s social media channels: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn for Art After Dark 2020 announcements!
In another design philanthropy initiative, in October, the MOYA team enjoyed our first time competing in the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the International Interior Design Association (IIDAMAC)’s Cosmo Couture benefit fashion show. MOYA Senior Architect Cristina Alvarez led the design and did not disappoint! Embracing the theme of “Memory”, our team celebrated the legacy of fashion icon Alexander McQueen. We dived into his design inspiration, technical process, the exuberant display of his raw fashion shows, and his unique silhouettes that brought a sense of fantasy and rebellion to design.

What’s Next?

With the firm’s background rooted in courage, diversity, diligence, and perseverance, wherever possible MOYA pursues projects that promote diversity and affordable living. Here are some of our new projects on the boards for 2020:
  • DCPS Brent Elementary School: MOYA is the architect of record, making innovative changes to serve Brent’s growing student population. We’re working with associate architects Hord Coplan Macht on a renovation to foster sustainable learning.
“The future of children, their hopes and dreams are shaped by their surrounding environments, and schools play a tremendous role in their academic growth,” says Moya Design Partners Project Designer Marilaura Guerrero, who is managing the Brent ES project, “MOYA is committed to thoughtful design of an elementary school that responds to the demands and ever-changing needs of the world around us. As architects and designers, it is our responsibility to rethink the traditional box. We must think of schools as built environments whose main objective is to stimulate knowledge and creativity.”
  • Riverside Station: Located in Capitol Heights, MD, across from the Capitol Heights Metro station, Riverside Station is an exciting new mixed-use residential community. We’re working with Argos Group on a comprehensive development plan for the site.
  • The Martha Gudelsky Child Development Center: Moya Design Partners is the architect of record for this brand-new early childhood education center in Silver Spring, MD. Project Designer Marilaura Guerrero is working with the team at CentroNía in the pre-planning stages: “We are so excited to work with CentroNía and MGCDC!” Marilaura says, “It is always super fun — and challenging — to design spaces for curious little minds. On this project, ‘constraint’ is a word outside of our parameters. Kids are thirsty for knowledge, and our main goal is to give them infinite resources in the shape of forms, materials, sounds and colors to help them thrive.”
  • Loudoun County Public Schools: MOYA is the interior architect on a historic rehabilitation project in Loudoun County in partnership with lead architects Beyer Blinder Belle. Moya Design Partners Project Manager Adrian Saunders is leading MOYA’s interior design process on the project.
  • “The Douglass School is one of the most important buildings in black history in Loudoun County, VA,” Adrian says, “MOYA is proud to honor the legacy of the Douglass School by being a part of the renovation of this historic building.”
  • MLK Mixed-Use Residential: Moya Design Partners Design Principal Federico Olivera-Sala is working with MRP Realty on another exciting new mixed-use residential project in DC. More details to come!
  • Walter E. Washington Streetscape: Also led by Adrian Saunders, Moya Design Partners’ visual design team is working on signage and wayfinding as part of DC’s Walter E. Washington Convention Center Streetscape.
MOYA is a women-owned, minority-owned, small DC business. Our firm has grown over the past year to include 26 architecture, interiors, visual design, and marketing professionals who are 80% women and 60% minority. MOYA is certified by the Maryland Department of Transportation’s Office of Minority Business Enterprise. We’re certified with WBENC, and we’re a Certified Business Enterprise with the District of Columbia’s Department of Small and Local Business Development. We’re an interdisciplinary team who bring an international perspective to design.
Moya Design Partners is delighted to be one of DC’s top design firms with public and private clients who are shaping the contemporary city. All of us at MOYA take pride in our collaborative approach and our steadfast dedication to excellence and improving our world. Please join us as we work to build an equally ground-breaking and successful 2020!