ADAMS, STEPHEN WILLIAM Stephen William Adams, a prominent San Diego architect who founded Adams Design Associates, Inc., Solana Beach, passed away on September 23, 2012, after prolonged illness. Steve was born 1944 in San Diego and grew up in La Mesa. He went on to graduate from UC Berkeley's College of Environmental Design. Adam's designs have permanently shaped San Diego and his legacy will continue to influence architecture through time. His work spans three decades and established him as one of the leading architects of Southern California, Mexico and Costa Rica. Adams' designs are fixtures of the San Diego and Costa Rica's coastal areas. He will be deeply missed and fondly remembered by his loving family, numerous friends, colleagues, and admirers. He will be remembered for his loving and gentle presence, his sweet sense of humor and generous heart. He leaves behind his wife Nirmala Jagannath, his children Annie, Darrin, Grayson, and Ursula, his stepchildren Gautam and Janaki, seven grandchildren and his brothers Jim and Jeff. A gathering to celebrate his life will take place at 10:00 a.m. inside the San Diego Botanical Gardens on October 14. A tour of some local homes he designed will follow.

Published by San Diego Union-Tribune on Sep. 29, 2012.
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21 Entries
Steve was a rare human and is greatly missed. He designed multiple houses for my family and me over the years and every one was as unique and as beautiful as he was ... Rest in Fullfilment!
Pat Larkin
July 28, 2021
Just learned of Steve's passing. I had the privilege of working with Steve as a landscape architect in 2000-03. He was a wonderful person. His passion and dedication to his work was inspiring to all who met him. My deepest sympathy to his extended families.
Lynn Brown-Reynolds
October 16, 2012
We have enjoyed three homes and the conceptual vision for our resort in Fiji. His presence is everywhere in the fabric of our life. What a gift and we will miss him.
Linda Kwasny
October 14, 2012
Our deepest sympathy and love go out to Grayson and his family. Sincerely, Robert & Elana Marceron and family
October 10, 2012
The world is a better place for Stephens input and presence - I enjoyed working with him for 20 years in Solana Beach - he is indeed missed and not forgotten....
Steven Apple
October 9, 2012
Today I was informed of Steve's Passing. Although we had only met one or two times, we shared a passion of the integration of architecture and nature in our work. The parallels in our projects are evident in the way we both
wanted our clients to live the indoor / outdoor lifestyle.
Steve's passion will be truly missed.
Kevin Farrell Architect
October 8, 2012
Good friend and football buddy from Grossmont High class of 62, a fine man gone but never forgoten, never.
Chuck Wilkinson
October 4, 2012
Dear Nirmala,
What sad news!! I send you our deepest sympathy,
Ursula and the Capitan Suizo Team
October 3, 2012
I haven't seen Steve in years but still remember him well from our Grossmont High School years, too bad and sad.
Chuck Cantwell
October 2, 2012
A lotta good people are going to miss him.
Love, Michael and Janet Westling
October 2, 2012
We have the good fortune of living in a home that Steve designed many years ago. Our “ tree house for adults” brings the outdoors in and provides the perfect back drop for the joys of life. Steve had the ability to enhance nature without imposing on it.
His kind spirit and creative gifts grace our lives daily.

Nathan & Katie Rosenblatt
October 1, 2012
We were friends many years ago, from elementary school through high school. As family friends we took many RV and boating trips together. He was the most multi-talented guy I ever knew.
Dennis Rodenburg
October 1, 2012
Steve was a dear friend and colleague, whose work will continue to make this world a beautiful place. We will never forget all the wonderful stories he told of his childhood, which repeatedly made us laugh again and again, no matter how many times he'd tell them. His true friendship, compassion and low-key delivery will be missed at every gathering and design project celebration. Thanks, Steve--for being such a positive influence in my career and for all of your support. My heart goes out to the family and everyone who was touched by your talent and passion for life.
Evie Avinante
October 1, 2012
This year Steve and I were design consultants on the new Pacific Coast Grill in Cardiff. He designed our house in 1995. Big talent. Hugh loss!
Hugh loss.
David Arnold
October 1, 2012
We are privileged to live in the fourth iteration of one of Steve's early works. More than that we are honored to have been present as his gentle hand and acute eye repeatedly reshaped and improved on the original, engaging skilled assistance from a retinue of craftsmen who moved to his architectural and horticultural music. May his place of rest be as charmed as the multitude of magical spaces he left behind.
Pam & Hal Fuson
September 30, 2012
We were neighbors on Cedros for 15 years and developed a true friendship. He was always there to help me when I had deign questions for the Belly Up, Wild Note Cafe, Solana Trade Center and our home and I feel blessed to enjoy his great sense of design and color every day of my life.
Dave Hodges
September 30, 2012
Steve was an incredible talent. Since the early 1970's, he has been on the cutting edge of San Diego architecture. From his youth, as a world-class sprinter, Steve was filled with a boundless energy that led to a prolific number of projects that bear his imprint.
Steve had a quiet confidence and a warm embracing spirit. He was icredibly well-read, socially aware and a friend you could count on when in need. His accomplishments and sweet soul live on. He will be greatly missed by the many whose lives he touched.
Bill and Cathie Canepa
September 30, 2012
Steve was my life long friend, and he will be missed.
Roger Dickinson
September 30, 2012
Dear Nirmala,
What tragic news. My love, sympathy and prayers I send to you with tears,
Love, Barbara ZoBell
September 29, 2012
He was a man of great vision and kindness. He explored the journey of creative architectural artistry with his generous old soul and will be missed but the manifestation of his life lives in all the hearts that loved him. Much Love To All…
D Moore
September 29, 2012
September 29, 2012
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