HGA Architects and Engineers, one of the state’s largest design firms, has a new chief executive. On Feb. 1, Tim Carl succeeded Dan Avchen, who had been the company’s CEO since 1996 and will now focus on strategic planning.

“Throughout HGA’s growth from a regional to a national firm, design excellence has always been at the heart of our philosophy and practice, and no one understands how to usher that legacy into the future better than Tim,” Avchen said. “Tim is a consummate designer and leader, and he recognizes the many opportunities for growth and innovation both within our firm and for our clients.”

Carl, 51, has been at HGA for 17 years, most recently as a design principal working with designers in various offices on a number of projects. He’s won several design awards, and led design efforts on several high-profile projects, including the University of Minnesota’s Northrop Auditorium renovation, the expansion and renovation of General Mills’ headquarters and the Nelson Cultural Center addition to the American Swedish Institute.

Carl also led the team’s design and planning for the new St. Paul Chamber Orchestra concert hall, and is leading the design on a new Conservatory of Music and Dance for the University of Missouri Kansas City.

“Dan and the senior leadership at HGA have built an extraordinary architectural firm, and I am honored to have this opportunity,” Carl said. “Our legacy is built on a culture of collaboration across a tremendous diversity of talent — bringing the best ideas forward for clients in nine industries ranging from health care and corporate environments to higher education and energy infrastructure. This is an exciting time for HGA, and I am looking forward to the future and working with our teams and clients throughout the country.”

HGA recently acquired a firm in San Jose, Calif., and has more than 650 employees. Building Design + Construction recently said HGA was one of the top 10 architecture and engineering firms in the United States.