Sustainability

 

Sustainability has been central to our work for over thirty years, long before it was fashionable. While a student in the late 1970’s, David designed and built a solar house utilizing active and passive features. In the early 1980’s, he studied co-housing in Denmark, developing an approach to town planning that incorporated social and ecological principals. In 1982, David won a coveted design award in a major solar design competition sponsored by the European Union. Since 1986, we have developed a body of work that is innovative, widely recognized and highly respected for its intelligent use of precious resources.

We approach every project from a simple perspective – good design encourages respect for the land, healthy lifestyles, active families and happy clients. Sustainability is not a style; it is a value. Our buildings integrate sustainable features, materials and systems, and sound land management, in a seamless, non-strident way, preserving and enhancing aesthetic quality and client usability.

Creating sustainable buildings requires a thoughtful and holistic approach. We begin every project with a thorough analysis of the site. Outstanding features in the landscape are identified and prevailing natural forces noted. Built form is carefully placed on the land to enhance the inherent qualities of the site and building. The “edges” between building and landscape, as well as the spaces between buildings, are carefully considered to maximize site usage. Interior and exterior spaces are merged to expand livable area and reduce building square footage. Existing structures are utilized, wherever possible, to encourage adaptive reuse, saving valuable resources.

Our building designs are “shaped” to acknowledge and respect the natural forces. Roofs are designed to hold snow in northern climates, overhangs are situated to shield glass from harsh summer sun. Day light is allowed to penetrate deeply into interior volumes to provide warmth and natural lighting. Secondary building elements, such as sun shades and garden walls, are incorporated for sun and wind control. Sustainable, non-toxic materials are specified wherever possible, as are appropriate building technologies designed to reduce heat/cold transfer and energy demand.

We employ a modern design methodology that encourages best use of daylight, orientation and site features without stylistic constraint. Trendy materials, forms and stylistic embellishments are avoided to imbue our buildings with a timeless quality and lasting value. The highest quality construction is encouraged, budget dependent, to assure long life.