James K.M. Cheng is a Canadian architect recognized for his pioneering contributions to west coast architecture and city building. Born in Hong Kong and educated in North America, Cheng’s approach represents a sensitive marriage of generous open environments with vibrant high-density living. He is a lecturer at the University of British Columbia, and a design critic and juror.
Cheng established James K.M. Cheng Architects Inc. in 1978 after winning a collaborative entry with Romses Kwan & Associates to build the Chinese Cultural Centre in Vancouver. Since its inception, the firm has been presciently focused on designing high-density urban environments around nuanced open spaces that foster social interchange. Cheng plays a leading role in the widely studied and emulated form of urban development known as Vancouverism. The firm continues to evolve concepts of livability and sustainability at various scales – most recently at the community planning level throughout the Greater Vancouver region, China, and Hawaii.
Cheng has received over forty-five design awards, including Order of Canada from the Governor General office of Canada, Canada’s Governor General’s Medal in Architecture. His work has been published and exhibited in Canada, the United States, London, Germany, Japan, Taiwan, and Hong Kong.