Design for life.

Since 1935, we’ve been on a mission to create beautiful spaces that inspire. To respect and restore our natural world. To foster feelings of belonging and holistic well-being in the built environment. To relentlessly pursue knowledge and innovation.

As the world grapples with increasingly complex social issues, climate challenges, and threats to biodiversity, we’re turning our aspirations into action. Through a holistic approach we call Living Design, we treat every project as an opportunity to make the world a better, healthier place.

A concept designed by our Denmark studio, Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects, Vridsløselille aims to lay the foundation for a healthy and social lifestyle through a variety of community spaces and intertwining parks.
Vridsløselille, Denmark
Our Approach

Whether it’s an office, campus, neighborhood, public park, or entire city, Living Design is the philosophy that guides our work. We carefully evaluate every project through seven lenses, or design drivers: Poetics & Beauty, Conceptual Clarity, Research & Innovation, Technology & Tectonics, Community & Inclusion, Resilience & Regeneration, and Health & Well-being.

The Living Design Framework

Our design drivers are carefully crafted to best serve our clients and the whole of life: that is, every living species and the habitats they depend on. Each driver is measured by key performance indicators that assess qualitative or performance-based impact. By being more intentional in our process and purposeful in our outcomes, we’re doing our part to create a healthier world.

The headquarters for HMTX Industries is an exemplar of regenerative design. The building’s operation is zero carbon and net-positive energy, meaning that it produces more energy than it consumes.
Norwalk, Connecticut
Designed in partnership with indigenous architect Eladia Smoke, Dawes Road Library elegantly pays homage to local indigenous culture with a facade reminiscent of a star blanket, a traditional gift in some indigenous communities.
Toronto, Ontario
Design Drivers

Poetics & Beauty: Design that is beautiful to behold and fills people with a sense of wonder and joy.

Conceptual Clarity: A clear, coherent, and recognizable concept that anchors the creative expression of a project.

Research & Innovation: Exploration and discovery that lead to new knowledge, pushing beyond the limitations of today to solve the most complex problems of tomorrow.

Technology & Tectonics: The seamless assembly of the many disparate parts of a built environment into a cohesive, elegant, and well-crafted place.

Community & Inclusion: Design that addresses the fundamental human need for inclusion by fostering a sense of belonging, no matter one’s social or economic circumstances.

Resilience & Regeneration: Solutions that rehabilitate and regenerate entire ecosystems—a must in a rapidly changing world with finite resources.

Health & Well-Being: Design that promotes physical, mental, emotional, and social vitality for life in all its many forms, resulting in a thriving and diverse ecosystem.

Our vision for the University of Utah Research Park seamlessly combines accessible public transportation, environmentally conscious urban planning, and sustainable infrastructure to create a resilient, economically viable, and inclusive community.
Salt Lake City, Utah
Beyond Sustainability: Regenerative Design

We are pioneers of the sustainability movement. From carbon leadership and energy reduction to building transparency and healthy materials, our collective achievements have been recognized over the decades with dozens of industry accolades. Most recently, Architizer named us the 2023 Best Sustainable Firm, and Metropolis recognized us as Firm of the Year in its 2022 Planet Positive Awards. We’ve earned a reputation for making design greener.

Today, we’re pushing beyond sustainability toward regeneration—toward a planet that’s flourishing with life, abundant with nature’s beauty, ecologically diverse, and continuously self-healing. We simply won’t settle for a world that’s “less bad” than it was yesterday; we strive for good, always. And we’ll settle for nothing less than a world that’s safe and enduring.

It all starts with Living Design.

On target for WELL Platinum and BREEAM Outstanding, the EBRD headquarters promotes occupant well-being through biophilic design.
London, United Kingdom
The design team for the University of Washington Life Sciences Building partnered with students to create a first-of-its-kind installation of solar cells on thin film that are laminated within vertical glass fins.
Seattle, Washington
While designing to LEED Platinum standards, the Southwest Library design team drew from research indicating that libraries are trending toward more gathering space, adaptable technology for patrons, and flexible room layouts.
Washington, D.C.
Ready to learn more about Living Design?