Axis Architects is a minority-owned architecture design practice in the DC metro area specialized in residential architecture, interior design, and urban planning - with extensive experience in the DC, MD and VA housing markets.  We deliver smart and creative design solutions tailored to our clients' needs while responding to their budgetary constraints.  Our design process utilizes different visualization tools that allow our clients to comprehend the designs we create and provide valuable input. Our goal is to arrive to sustainable design solutions that best incorporate our clients' needs and aesthetics.  Axis Architects provides exceptional customer service; we guide our clients through every step of the design process, including concept design, permits, and construction administration. 



  • Multifamily Buildings

  • Custom Homes

  • Home Renovations


  • Office

  • Retail






Shahnur Bostan, RA, LEED AP​

Shahnur is a founding partner and president of Axis Architects.  He is a licensed architect in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC.  Shahnur supervises the technical aspects of the architectural projects; taking them from schematic design through permit and providing construction administration services.  His 15 year of experience in the DC residential market gives him the expertise to guide the projects through an efficient permitting process and make sure the projects are built in accordance to the design.

Shahnur has a bachelor’s degree in Architecture from Istanbul Technical University (in 2000) and a Master’s of architecture degree from Georgia Institute of Technology (in 2003).  Prior to founding Axis Architects, he worked in prominent architectural firms in the DC region where he managed large multi-family projects. 


Elena Romero, AICP

Elena is a founding partner and CEO of Axis Architects.  Elena is the firm’s design leader –she specializes in architectural design, interior design, and urban planning.  Elena works with clients to make their vision a reality.  Her collaborative approach allows clients to explore different design alternatives, that allows them to arrive to a design that is tailored to their needs and budget.

Elena studied architecture at Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Bogota, Colombia (2001).  After completing her studies, she attended University of Miami where she obtained a Master’s degree in Urban Design (2003).  Prior to founding Axis Architects, Elena worked for 14 years at an architecture and urban design firm in the DC area where she managed large scale mixed-use projects.

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Anthony S. Pizzo III, AIA, NCARB

Anthony is a Senior Project Manager at Axis Architects. With over 10 years of experience, he is well-versed in developing projects through all aspects of the design process. From initial concept design to construction documentation, his thoughtful analysis, creativity, and attention to detail are seamlessly integrated to create great architecture that helps to transform the city.

Prior to joining Axis Architects, Anthony worked at architecture firms in both the Baltimore and DC areas where he focused on large-scale multi-family, mixed-use, and hospitality projects. He studied architecture at the University of Maryland where he received a Bachelor of Science in Architecture (2008) and a Master of Architecture degree (2012).


Gabriela Ochoa Martinez

Gabriela is a project designer at Axis Architects. Gabriela supports the design and technical phases of our projects; from schematic design to developing construction documents. Gabriela is also our social media coordinator. 

Gabriela received her Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the University of Maryland. While in school, Gabriela was an intern at a firm in the DC area where she aided with 3D modeling. Prior to joining Axis Architects, Gabriela worked as a language interpreter for PGCPS where she provided language access to non-English speaking parents.

Lauren Harlow, RA, LEED AP

Lauren is a project manager at Axis Architects, she helps advance projects though the permit application process and prepares drawings for construction.

She received her architecture license in Maryland (2017) and her bachelor of Architecture degree from Penn State University (2009). Prior to joining Axis Architects, she worked on complex multi-family and mixed use wood construction projects in the DC area.

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Elizabeth Bester, RA

Elizabeth is a project architect at Axis Architects. She has 12+ years of experience in the fields of urban planning and architectural design and has participated in all phases of the project process, from zoning and conceptual design through construction administration. She has been the lead project manager on town planning, large, mixed-use urban infill and single family homes projects from the DC metro area to Europe and the Middle East. Elizabeth also has a strong interest in creating livable communities through sustainable design. Prior to her architecture career she lived abroad, teaching in Germany on a Fulbright Scholarship. Elizabeth earned a BA in Art and German at Bowdoin College (1994) and a Master of Architecture at Yale University (1999).


Ian McCarthy

Ian is an Intern Architect at Axis Architects. Ian provides support throughout the design process, documenting the existing conditions of our projects and assisting in the development of the proposed designs. In addition, Ian produces renderings of our projects and aids in the assembly of our interior design sets.

Ian is currently a fourth year student at The Catholic University of America, majoring in Architecture. He is enrolled in Catholic University’s Integrated Path to Architecture Licensure (IPAL) Program; poised to graduate in 2025 with his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees, along with his Architecture License.