Sustainable Architecture Design

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Firm Commitment:

At Rowland+Broughton, our team recognizes the daunting climate challenges ahead and is excited to drive transformational change.

We have the tools we need to rise to this challenge. We can create beautiful, efficient buildings and spaces that reduce carbon emissions and benefit the experience for inhabitants. We are committed to unleashing these tools to their fullest capacity.

We lead our clients with our collective sustainability and climate goals. Our proven measures can also improve cost, operations, wellness and more. The projects we create should positively contribute to each individual environment, therefore we design and build with sustainability and longevity goals. This is achieved through listening to our clients, collaborating with consultants who share our goals as a sustainable architecture firm, researching new sustainable technologies, and testing materials and applications before applying our findings.

“Everyone needs to do their part to adopt positive change as the norm. As architects and designers, our part involves the built environment, and we are so lucky that our clients prioritize sustainability as well. Together with our clients, we can ensure buildings are less dependent on the grid, have a lighter carbon footprint, and are future proofed for the transformations we see coming.” – Marisol Foreman, Sustainability Architectural Manager, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP BD+C

Our foundation of sustainable practices is rooted in our experience in the re-use and re-purpose of existing structures, including both residential and commercial buildings. The process of saving the most essential part of a building and its embodied energies while adding value to the structure by incorporating energy-efficient components is the essence of our sustainable philosophy.

The Importance of Sustainable Practices in the Built Environment

 

Global CO2 Emissions by Sector

 

Sustainable Design Approach:

Rowland+Broughton has identified baseline performance standards for our projects as a sustainable architecture firm with studios in Aspen and Denver, Colorado. These standards are included in our design process from the first meeting with a client through a 12-month post-occupancy evaluation. Rowland+Broughton has committed to focusing on the American Institute of Architect’s (AIA) Framework for Design Excellence’s 10 Measures, dividing them into three buckets: Carbon, Well-Being, and Resilience. These three measures encompass focus areas that have the most positive sustainable impact on the most common types of Rowland+Broughton projects. We will continue expanding on these three measures as we track, and identify success, in implementing these across our projects. During our first meeting with a client, we discuss Rowland+Broughton’s commitment to the 2030 Challenge and what this means from a performance standpoint to their building. Benefits include but are not limited to: healthier indoor air quality, resiliency in the event of a wildfire or power outage, lower energy bills, increased indoor thermal comfort, little to no dependency on natural gas, and a smaller carbon footprint.

Rowland+Broughton has identified focus areas for each of the three measures that will have the largest impact for the typical project location and type:

Carbon focuses on energy generation and passive design strategies. Energy generation goals include designing for solar-ready roofs, a backup battery system, and a calculation for potential offset or path to net zero. Passive Design strategies include high performing windows, maintaining a low window to wall ratio, increasing the insulation of assemblies above code minimum for a higher performing thermal envelope, and a maximum lighting power density for residential projects. Rowland+Broughton is dedicated to reducing and eventually eliminating gas-burning appliances and mechanical systems.

Well-Being focuses on indoor air quality and thermal comfort. Indoor air quality goals include detailing for a tight enclosure, dedicated filtered outdoor air, specifying no, or very low VOCs for all interior finishes. Thermal comfort goals include operable windows in all projects, and efficient and low-velocity mechanical systems, such as hydronic radiant. The low-velocity mechanical systems coupled with a high performing thermal envelope and high-performing windows will also contribute to greater indoor thermal comfort.

Resilience focuses on durability and longevity as well as system redundancy. Durability and longevity goals include hard-wearing, low maintenance finishes, simple solutions for technology that is non-integrated (allowing for future technology upgrades without requiring a remodel), and passive solutions for snowmelt, which will also help the project reduce energy loads. System redundancy goals include battery backup with solar to maintain essential loads, a water filtration system and dedicated filtered outdoor air to provide clean water and air, even in the event of a power outage, and utilizing thermal mass and increased insulation to maintain interior building temperatures.

USGBC Membership and the 2030 Challenge:

Rowland+Broughton is a Silver Member of USGBC and has joined the ever-important AIA 2030 Commitment.

In 2006, Architecture 2030 created the 2030 Challenge, which lays out a set of targets for improving energy efficiency and reducing the carbon emissions of buildings. The goal? Reaching carbon neutrality and getting as close as possible to net zero by 2030 through incremental improvements in project performance.

Practicing design in our sustainable studios, we educate ourselves through research, and extend this knowledge to our clients, applying the shared goals of a sustainable future one project at a time. Completing multiple Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified projects, the R+B team encompasses several LEED accredited designers who consult on sustainable best practices and serve as resources throughout the design process.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What does a sustainable architect do?

Sustainable architecture firms work on more sustainable design solutions for the construction of buildings. They aim to lessen the environmental impact of urban development.

What is sustainable architecture called?

Sustainable architecture can also be called green architecture and environmental architecture. It is the practice of making architecture that wants to minimize the environmental impact of buildings overall and reduce energy use.

What is the difference between sustainability and green building?

The difference between sustainability and green building is that green building construction focuses only on the environment while sustainable building focuses on the people, planet, and profit.

 


Resources

Team Member

Mark Bever

Mark Bever
Role
Project Manager
Affiliations
American Institute of Architects (AIA)
LEED Accredited Professional
NCARB
Education
University of Colorado at Boulder, College of Environmental Design - Bachelor of Architecture

Mark Bever is a Project Manager and provides his expertise on a variety of Rowland+Broughton residential projects. He is an associate member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and a LEED Accredited Professional. Mark is also involved with Habitat for Humanity in Denver.

Previously, Mark worked on high-end residential projects throughout the Roaring Fork Valley and has professional familiarity in the Denver residential real estate business.

A Colorado native from Ft. Collins, Mark earned his Bachelor of Environmental Design from the University of Colorado at Boulder. 

 

Team Member

Marisol Foreman

Marisol Foreman
Role
Sustainability Architectural Manager
Affiliations
American Institute of Architects (AIA)
LEED Accredited Professional Building Design + Construction
NCARB
CGBG Board Member
Education
University of Colorado at Boulder - Bachelor of Environmental Design
University of Washington - Master of Architecture

Marisol Foreman received her Bachelor of Environmental Design with an Architecture focus from the University of Colorado at Boulder and her Master of Architecture with a Sustainable Systems and Design Degree Focus and Daylighting Certificate from the University of Washington in Seattle, WA. She has studied in Rome, in Sydney under Glenn Murcutt, and in Berlin, Germany. She is LEED accredited with specialty in Building Design and Construction, received her NCARB Certificate, and is a licensed Architect in the State of Colorado and the State of Washington. As an active volunteer, she is on the Board of the Colorado Green Building Guild (CGBG) and a member of the AIA Colorado Design + Honor Awards Committee.

Marisol has nearly a decade of experience working in the field of architecture and is the Sustainability Architectural Manager with Rowland+Broughton. Before coming to Rowland+Broughton, she worked on several transit-oriented projects in Munich, Germany for Albrecht und Partner, religious and multi-family housing projects for atelierjones in Seattle, WA, and on large commercial, science and tech, sports, recreation, and entertainment projects. Marisol strives to implement sustainable design practices into every project and has experience working on LEED certified buildings.

Marisol grew up skiing, mountain biking, camping, and hiking in Durango, Colorado and loves exploring the Colorado outdoors.

Team Member

Kaitlin Gordon

Kaitlin Gordon
Role
Interior Designer
Affiliations
LEED Green Associate
Education
Purdue University - BA Interior Design

Kaitlin Gordon brings nearly a decade of experience as an Interior Designer to the Rowland+Broughton team. Originally from Indianapolis, Indiana, Kaitlin graduated from Purdue University where she received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Interior Design. Kaitlin has her LEED GA Certification.

Her inspiration and passion lie within design experience and how interiors solutions can affect the people that interact with the space. From fit to finish, she uses her knowledge of sustainable design solutions, material, texture, and light to create compelling interiors. Prior to joining Rowland+Broughton, Kaitlin worked on commercial design in healthcare, retail, and higher education. 

In her free time, she loves to hike, ski and spend time with family and friends.

Team Member

Steve Harris

Steve Harris
Role
Associate / Project Manager
Affiliations
American Institute of Architects (AIA)
LEED Accredited Professional
NCARB
Education
St. Lawrence University - Bachelor of Fine Arts
University of Colorado at Denver - Master of Architecture

Steve Harris, Associate, has nearly two decades of experience in the field of architecture working on high-end residential, multi-family, mixed-use, and commercial projects.  Steve received his BFA from St. Lawrence University in Fine Arts and his MA in Architecture from the University of Colorado at Denver.

As a licensed Architect he brings experience leading complex and technical projects.  Steve’s passion for design & construction is evident in his attention to detail and methodical process to service the project and patience with clients.

Steve has traveled the world experiencing a variety of cultures and their built environment.  Whether it was studying in Florence Italy, working in Dubai, UAE or scuba diving in the Caribbean, Steve is always exploring how other cultures utilize design to create shelter with timeless details.

Steve is originally from New England and is an avid skier, scuba diver, biker, and home chef.

Team Member

James Jones

James Jones
Role
Architectural Designer
Affiliations
LEED Accredited Professional Building Design + Construction
NCARB
Education
University of Kansas State - Master of Architecture

James Jones joined Rowland+Broughton after receiving his Masters of Architecture from Kansas State University. During his time at K-State he spent time as an intern and studied abroad in Orvieto, Italy. Through the experience gained while traveling the world, interning and learning from professors who strongly care for the environment, James quickly became passionate about well-being in the built world.

Growing up in a small town in Kansas, James developed a strong passion for place. He believes every project should draw inspiration from the site, climate, and history of that place. He approaches design in a simplistic way – he takes notice in the conceptual ideas and every project detail while focusing on sustainable solutions that respect nature and promote healthy living.

When he is not in the office, James strives to soak up every opportunity for outdoor recreation Colorado has to offer.

 

Team Member

Tim Kovats

Tim Kovats
Role
Project Architect
Affiliations
American Institute of Architects (AIA)
LEED Accredited Professional
NCARB
Education
Florida State University - BA English
University of Colorado, Denver - Master of Architecture

Tim Kovats earned his Master’s degree in Architecture from University of Colorado. He is a licensed architect and LEED AP with more than a decade of experience in residential, education, aviation, and commercial practice areas.  He has studied abroad in London, Rotterdam, and Berlin. Tim’s forte is technical and construction documentation, making the design concept a reality and working out the details that make a project sing.

Tim previously spent more than five years living and working in Istanbul, Turkey, where he worked on projects far afield as Saudi Arabia and Kazakhstan.

Tim is a board sport aficionado, loves traveling with his family, and when he’s not architecting, he can be found investing his money and time building out his Sprinter van.

Team Member

Will Otte

Will Otte
Role
Principal / Project Manager
Affiliations
American Institute of Architects (AIA)
LEED Accredited Professional Building Design + Construction
NCARB
Education
University of Colorado at Boulder - Bachelor of Environmental Design
University of Colorado at Denver - Master of Architecture

Will Otte, Principal, AIA, and LEED AP BD+C has over a decade of experience as a licensed architect and has worked on high-end residential, hospitality, and multifamily resort housing.  He has participated on winning teams for municipal RFQ and RFP competitions for affordable housing in resort mountain communities. He has been involved in several projects, including high-end residential projects, hotel and restaurant remodels, artist studios and ground up mixed-use proposals.

Will’s personal interest in design lies at the intersection of digital design and the tactile product. While in school, he collaborated on a variety of Digital Fabrication projects and has created furniture from recycled materials using these same processes. His design sensibilities have led to the design and production of a wide array of both practical and artistic items. The breadth of the objects Will has designed encompass alpine skis, ceiling installations, furniture, and artwork.

A native of Aspen, Colorado, he has a unique love and perspective of our projects in the mountains.