Welcome! We believe that building things should feel good, both because the creative process itself is fulfilling, and because bringing something excellent into the world is profoundly satisfying. Design and construction is a journey of imagination and cooperation that shapes the world around us; as Winston Churchill once said, “We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us.”
In that spirit of creating buildings that will shape us well, we celebrate contextualization and sustainability with a culture of curiosity and joy. Here is what that looks like:
Contextualization: Asks the question “What has been here before?” Whether the answers are environmental (ecosystem, historic uses of the land), or architectural (heritage considerations, the surrounding urban fabric), we believe that this is the “first, do no harm” of medicine translated to architecture. Projects that are “good neighbours” to their past and habitat make better communities.
Sustainability: Buildings and construction are among the largest contributors to global resource use. As a society, we can work toward a future where buildings are a net benefit to ecosystems, and the first step is to act on the opportunities for improvement available to us today. In every project, we must ask the question “How can we reduce the negative impacts of this project on the earth?” The answers to this will be multivariate, taking into account both construction and ongoing operation costs. Building placement, smart envelope design, local materials, healthful materials, flexibility, and efficient layout all contribute to a building that sits lightly on the earth. When buildings are sustainably designed, they are better cherished, longer lasting, and can serve many generations. They shape us well.
Buildings that are sustainable and in harmony with their context feel good to inhabit. If you are interested in embarking on the adventure of design with us, get in touch, we’d love to hear from you.
Valerie Sensinger, AANB, MRAIC
Hello! I am a globally-minded architect fascinated with the specificity of local place-making. I was trained in my hometown of Chicago, an exhilarating urban laboratory full of the built history of 20th century architectural advancements. My thesis work and subsequent time in Asia studying vernacular responses to climate and culture has underscored my commitment to architecture that embodies meaning. In 2013, I transplanted to Fredericton, New Brunswick and have deeply enjoyed learning about this beautiful place and its peoples. I am a first, second, and third generation immigrant in North America with a multicultural heritage that has taught me to listen well and synthesize identity from a diversity of inputs. This is also the essence of design – bringing all the important pieces together into a coherent whole.