John Dealey, 34

John Dealey, 34

Principal and owner at Ideal Consulting Group

John Dealey, 34
By November 30, 2023 6:15 PM

John Dealey knew for a while that he wanted to start his own architecture firm. And he got a crash course in managing a new wing for a larger firm in 2017 when he helped open the New York office of OTJ Architects, a large, privately owned architecture firm from D.C. 

Dealey had a number of short stints at other firms in the early years of his career, which gave him insight into how different kinds of companies operate. His childhood was also fairly peripatetic. He was born in Houston, raised in Rochester, N.Y., and then his family moved to Virginia during his senior year of high school.

Even before finishing his bachelor’s in architecture at the University of Virginia, he was studying abroad in Copenhagen and got an offer to work at a local Danish firm, Gehl Architects. 

When he returned to the States, he landed in the design and construction arm of the National Institutes of Health in D.C., but felt that it was too slow. His seven months at NIH were followed by yearlong stints at Gant Brunnett Architects in Baltimore, and Nelson Architects and Loffredo Brooks Architects in New York.

Once Dealey joined OTJ in 2017, he started laying the groundwork for his own shop, taking on design work that OTJ considered too small. After finishing a master’s in real estate at New York University’s Schack Institute a year later, he felt it was time to go solo. In early 2020, he left OTJ for good to focus on his own Ideal Consulting Group.

“I had been getting requests from people for me to help them directly, without them having to go through a large firm and not getting the team that they preferred,” Dealey explained. “10 Grand Central was my brainchild. I worked with Marx Realty on the original conversion. They were the first people to ask if I would do something with them directly — that kind of got my brain moving in that direction.”

Dealey now focuses mostly on office, retail and hospitality buildouts of up to 120,000 square feet. His current projects include an “elevated karaoke lounge” called SOAP, a slew of small apartment buildings in Brooklyn for developers Carlyle Group and Greenbrook Partners, and an office design for a performing arts group in the Garment District.

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