Architecture + Design Students Win First Place in Net Zero Energy Design Competition

Matt Sutter, Grant Rocco, Nikki Perry and Nayef Mudawar

The Architecture + Design Graduate Team took first place in the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association (NESEA) Net Zero Energy Design Competition on March 3. The team of master of architecture students Nikki Perry, Nayef Mudawar, Grant Rocco and Matt Sutter, created a winning design that addresses environmental and social sustainability.  

Set on an abandoned site between the canals in Holyoke, the students crafted a program that would promote urban farming, opportunities for education and job creation. Their work included rigorous environmental modeling through which they developed a viable approach to net zero energy goals for the building. 

The project team was advised by professor Kathleen Lugosch and assistant professor Ajla Aksamija, who is continuing her work with the NESEA in the graduate architecture studio she is currently teaching. This time, the Holyoke site is an abandoned paper mill. The students are developing adaptive reuse strategies designed to meet net zero energy goals.