By HCO Staff
TAMPA, Fla.—BSA LifeStructures (BSA), a nationally recognized architecture and engineering firm, continues to develop its Florida footprint by opening a joint studio offering architecture and engineering services.
The joint studio opened in September, and BSA will hold a private holiday event this week to commemorate the opening.
The joint studio comes following BSA’s acquisition of Carastro & Associates earlier this year. BSA has conducted business in Florida since the late 1980s, initially focusing on long-term acute care hospitals across the state. In recent years, the firm has expanded its presence, welcoming Melanie Harris as Principal and National Healing Practice Director in April 2020, and Tim Wagoner as a Learning Principal in early 2023.
The Tampa Studio now includes 28 employees, and with BSA’s other studios in Austin, Denver, Indianapolis, Raleigh, and St. Louis, brings the firm’s headcount to over 200.
“What’s exciting for us is that by building this studio alongside our new colleagues from Carastro, it speaks to the power of an integrated studio,” says Harris. “Taking what BSA is known for and placing it in Florida with local roots and expertise is a testament to our commitment to expanding our creative horizons.”
Founded in 1960 and located in Tampa, Fla., the former Carastro & Associates focuses on mechanical, electrical, plumbing, fire protection, and technology engineering design services. In the decades that have followed, their business has grown into a well-established firm known for its expertise and dedication to clients.
Paul Carastro, an engineering Principal with BSA, has designed electrical systems for over 35 years in the Tampa Bay and Central Florida areas. “My father started the Carastro firm out of our house when I was born, and the irony is that the first project that helped him establish the firm is one that we’d come back and upgrade the electrical systems on 40 years later.”
“The acquisition was just such a natural fit,” says George Stefanovici, the Tampa Studio Director and Principal at BSA. “The reason our team has blended together so well over the past six months is why it made so much sense in the first place, starting with our similar cultures, total dedication to our clients and focus on accountability.”
As a national, integrated design firm, BSA provides architecture, engineering, interior design, and planning services for spaces in healthcare, higher education, and science and technology. With this focus on local leadership and national expertise, BSA recently was awarded the engineering component of the forthcoming $260 million BayCare Manatee Hospital, which will be located at the northeast corner of Moccasin Wallow Road and Interstate 75. The hospital will provide northern Manatee County residents easy access to convenient, high-quality health care, including quicker, closer access to potentially life-saving emergency care.
BSA plans to continue to help shape lasting projects within the state, and serve current and prospective partners in healing, learning and discovery in alignment with its mission. “I have seen the incredible growth and excitement around the numerous projects that are expanding Tampa and the surrounding region,” says Stefanovici. “With this new sense of collaboration and identity, we’ll bring lasting facilities that benefit the greater Tampa Bay area, and beyond.”
“The opportunity to build on our Florida presence is truly exciting,” notes BSA CEO Tim Spence. “It means we’re able to expand on our mission to create inspired solutions that improve lives. Our work doesn’t just shape buildings; it transforms healthcare environments, educational spaces, and research facilities into places that promote healing, learning, and discovery.”