Propel Studio has committed itself to making architecture that has a minimal impact on our environment. We have a holistic approach to sustainability, taking a wide range of economic, environmental and social factors into our designs.
Our team has an array of tools in our belt that help along the path to a sustainable built environment. Our experience includes working on projects that have utilized various sustainable certifications including LEED, Living Building, Earth Advantage and others, to guide the design process. All of the partners at Propel Studio are LEED Accredited Professionals and have made the commitment to stay ahead of the curve through continuing education opportunities and research. As a firm we have signed onto the 2030 Challenge committing ourselves to adopt stringent design targets aimed at reducing fossil fuel consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and energy consumption with a goal of building Carbon-neutral buildings by 2030. All of this leads to a long term approach to decision making as we take the lifecycle cost of each choice into consideration.
Even when certifications aren’t applicable or are cost prohibitive, we incorporate sustainable strategies, both active and passive, into our designs. We work closely with our engineers and consultants to seamlessly integrate innovative energy saving systems like ground source heat pumps, radiant slabs, heat exchangers, and others, to minimize the need for expensive mechanical systems and relying on fossil fuels to heat and cool our buildings. Wall and Roof details often include extra insulation and our designs encourage natural ventilation to further reduce reliance on energy intensive machinery to condition our spaces. We advise our clients to turn their roofs into productive space by installing solar hot water, PV panels, and green roofs where appropriate. Our dedication to sustainability doesn’t stop at our building’s envelope. Interior spaces flow out into the landscape where native plants and site design reduces dependence on irrigation, while bioswales and other elements can work to filter grey water and reduce stormwater runoff.
Along with our expertise in environmental sustainability, we find it extremely important to address social and economic issues. We pride ourselves in building strong relationships within our community and in the communities in which we build. Building lasting partnerships and collaboration leads to places that are well used, loved, and maintained. Our goal is to build buildings that become centers of their community, that are cared for by their users, that are beautiful and timeless. Throughout our careers we have donated our time and experience to community groups and nonprofits to help them grow and succeed. Providing services Pro-Bono or on a sliding scale makes sure that people and groups from all walks of life and economic conditions can have access to the transformative power of architecture and design.
Community engagement is at the heart and soul of everything we do at Propel Studio. Our strength is derived from our inclusive working methods and focus on social and environmental sustainability.
We are a community focused design firm, that works to make each project a benefit to the communities in which we work. We donate design services to nonprofits and local schools. We designed a flyer for the Montavilla Farmers Market, and set up a booth to offer free design advice to market-goers. We worked with Architecture for Humanity (now called Open Architecture) to design a youth center in South Africa. We designed an outdoor classroom for a local elementary school. These are just a few of the community focused and probono projects we have undertaken to date. Each of these activities has connected us to an incredible group of passionate people. We feed off the enthusiasm of others to collaborate in making our cities and towns better places to live. Architecture and design expertise is one small piece of the puzzle that we bring to the table, but it is the people we work with, the neighborhood leaders that collaborate with us, and the excitement of the public that really drives our firm forward.
Our dedication to community doesn’t start and stop at our office. Each of our employees is involved in various volunteer organizations in the communities in which we live and work. We serve on Neighborhood Association Boards, within the American Institute of Architects, volunteer with Architects in Schools, and through business groups, among others.
We believe architecture holds immense power to make our world a better place and our mission is to carefully wield our skills to deliver amazing projects for our clients and the community. We are passionate about what we do and wield our design skills to help solve problems small and large. Learn more about Propel Studio’s work by clicking the link below.