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Posted on May 31, 2013

Grundmanis Fellow Studies Theory and Practice of Sustainable Architecture

Matiss-300With the support of the 2012 Jānis Grundmanis Postgraduate Fellowship, Matīss Zemītis was able to carry out second year studies at Pratt Institute.  During his studies in the first professional Master of Architecture program, he  investigated numerous successful praxis of sustainable design implementation in the U.S. under one of the leading sustainability rating systems, LEED, and compared them to other standards and praxis used in EU.  His master thesis project will develop an individual approach to sustainable architecture in Latvia.

In the first semester, I had the opportunity to work with architect James Garrison and to develop a carbon neutral modular residential building in New York City. In his architectural praxis outside of the institute, Garrison specializes in both energy efficient and carbon neutral modular construction. During the semester, he organized a field trip to one of his projects in New York City, where it was particularly helpful to see how designs and ideas are executed in real life conditions. In the second semester, along with courses in the regular M.Arch degree sequence, I was able to carry out a sustainable car showroom project in Tokyo under the guidance of architect Alexandra Barker and Adrian Allred. Working on a 50,000 square foot project and collaborating with four other structural and mechanical engineers revealed many peculiarities of a sustainable design in yet another urban location.