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In Memory of Architect Andrew Voss, FBIA

Written By Neomie Tavernier, Linda Moore & Bruce Jardine

Images Supplied By The Barbados Institute of Architects

On December 6, 2022, the Barbados Institute of Architects (BIA) Executive Council had the distinct pleasure of presenting the honorary award of BIA Fellow to Architect Andrew Voss, in recognition of his contributions and achievements within the field of architecture. 


Architect Voss has made a significant contribution to both the architectural profession and the BIA. He is the author of many noteworthy buildings throughout Barbados; was an evening lecturer at the Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic; and was involved in the Institute’s establishment as President from 1974 - 1976. His contributions to the BIA were previously recognized with an Institute appreciation award in 1998.




At the opening ceremony of the Barbados Mutual Life Assurance Society (Collymore Rock Office Building), the late J.M.G. “Tom” Adams, Prime Minister at the time of completion, said: 


“When first I saw this spectacular building, I was immensely gratified that I had been invited to declare it open. I consider it to be one of the major architectural landmarks of this latter part of the 20th century in Barbados and in the Caribbean, and I am sure that it will be a credit to Barbados for hundreds of years. This building is of course much smaller than the run of the mill skyscrapers going up all over the world, whose architects balance matchboxes to effect a design and look only to the use of materials to achieve distinction from 10,000 others. This structure is an example of what we can do on our necessarily smaller scales, by applying thought and imagination to the visual creative genius given to just a few of us, even fewer of whom practice as architects in small countries.” 


Practice Management

TomlinVoss was established over 50 years ago with Architect Voss as Principal. The firm, although reduced in size, is still in practice today; with Architect Voss currently serving as Senior Partner. The longevity and success of the firm reflect his strong practice management and influential leadership. 


Service to the Profession 


Architect Voss recalls that the BIA (first known as the Barbados Society of Architects) was established for convenience by either inexperienced persons or very busy professionals. In 1973 however, the administration - driven by an idea developed by Andrew Steel which was enthusiastically adopted by David Rundle, David Senior, and Architect Voss - rallied together to create a worthwhile governing body for the profession.   


In particular, David Rundle's excitement about the publication of a magazine-format office diary not only served its purpose for members but also provided an unexpected source of income for the emerging Institute.  


Suddenly, there was a viable social core for the relatively few architects of the time, including meetings, talks, and a rather smart dinner dance held at the Hilton Hotel attended by members and government ministers. This social development gave the profession a new prominence and public standing.  


Public Service & Education 


Architect Voss served as an evening instructor (unpaid) for an academic year at the (then) Samuel Prescod Technical College, located at the port at that time.  


After the college was relocated, he subsequently designed the Port Department Building on the same site.  For him, this was an exercise in achieving practical and economic designs for buildings/complexes. 


Architect Voss has also been involved in significant historical restoration projects, sharing his knowledge of architectural design across many different religions. 


His public contributions to the development of our local youth through sports, while not architectural, are also notable; throughout his adult life, he has taught windsurfing, rugby, and cricket on Saturday mornings. 


Those who have known Architect Voss have their own recollections of his contributions to architecture, and how he has influenced them both personally and professionally.  His work remains a living testament of his dedication to his craft and his profession. 


Examples of buildings designed by Architect Voss include: 


  • Northern Business Centre, Speightstown 

  • Cave Shepherd Department Store, Bridgetown/Sunset Crest 

  • (Edutech) Primary School Programme (St. Paul’s, St. Matthew’s, St. Bernard’s, St. Andrew’s, St Joseph’s, and St Alban’s) 

  • Banks Breweries (Hospitality areas, warehouse, main entrance, and new sports pavilion), Wildey 

  • BET/Cable & Wireless/Lime, Wildey (Presently university offices) 

  • Rockley Golf Country Club, Rockley (Part design and complete construction of all phases (ongoing) 

  • Queen Elizabeth Hospital, (Major amendments and additions including Lions Eye Care Centre), Bridgetown 

  • Flow Office/Technical Centre, Warrens 

  • Palm Beach Development including EU Office Complex, Hastings 

  • Barclays Bank, Holetown and Wildey 

  • Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (FCIBC), Fontabelle, Marhill Street,  St. Pandoras Courtyard, Peronne Plaza Rendezvous, Rock Dundo, Speightstown, Sunset Crest, and Worthing) 

  • University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus (Original completion and subsequent additions) 

  • Barbados Workers Union, Harmony Hall (Restoration) 

  • Labour College, Mangrove 

  • Golden Anchorage Hotel, Holetown 

  • Golden View Condominiums, Holetown 

  • Barbados Royal Police Force - Rugby Club, Squash Club and Courts, The Garrison, Bridgetown 

  • St. Winifred’s School - Sports Clubhouse, Pine Hill 

  • Queen’s College - Sports Facilities, Husbands  

  • Barbados Synagogue Restoration (Military cemetery development), Bridgetown 

  • Barbados Mutual Life Assurance Society (Original building renovations), Collymore Rock 

  • Soroptimists Eden Hall Shelter Village (Complete complex), Bridgetown 

  • St Francis Church, Mount Steadfast, St. James (Additions and restorations) 

  • St Matthias, Hastings, Christ Church (Additions and restorations) 

  • St George's Church, The Glebe, St. George (Additions and restorations) 


Notably, all sports, charity and religious projects were completed pro bono. 

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