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PHWPA: “Off the Grid? There Was No Grid!”

February 10, 2015 @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm EST

Join us for a project review of Sant Lespwa, a recipient of the AIA 2015 National Honor Award for Architecture.  The session will walk through sustainable design aspects resulting in an off the grid project that actively engaged the local community in the design and construction process.

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Image Credit: Sarah Spanagel

Sant Lespwa, which is Haitian for “Center of Hope”, was commissioned by World Vision and is located in a rural region in Haiti.  The project is a community resource center providing support, education, and skill building opportunities. Careful planning for natural ventilation, daylighting, water collection, sewage treatment, and electricity generation resulted in a completely self-sufficient building in a region where there are no public utilities and limited access to water.  Construction included on-the-job skills training for over 100 residents. The participatory and empathetic process created an uplifting environment that inspires hope.


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Image courtesy of Rothschild Doyno Collaborative

Mike Gwin
Rothschild Doyno Collaborative, Principal
Director of Design

PHWPA image3Mike Gwin is a principal with Rothschild Doyno Collaborative. A graduate of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University with a Bachelor of Architecture, Mike is a registered architect, LEED-accredited professional, and Certified Passive House Consultant. In his 15 years of experience, Mike has consistently received architectural and sustainable design merit for successful project outcomes, including over 30 design awards at the local, state, and national levels. On numerous accounts, projects have included the adaptive reuse of existing structures into meaningful design solutions that align with our clients’ unique vision. In his role as Director of Design with Rothschild Doyno Collaborative, Mike not only leads projects that deliver innovative design solutions but also fosters a collaborative culture in the design process that encourages the integration of both technical and inspirational goals from initial concept through technical detailing and construction administration. Mike’s interest in mentoring project innovation and advancement of conceptual ideas has connected him with Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Architecture as an Adjunct Studio Instructor. Mike is currently a member of the AIA Pittsburgh Board of Directors working to advance our professional organization’s mission.

Passive House WPA

PHWPA is a membership organization dedicated to lowering energy use in buildings. PHWPA’s goal is to provide education, promote awareness, transparent resource sharing, and advocacy for Passive House strategies for commercial and residential buildings in our region. In pursuing this goal we will foster a collaborative network to unify the Passive House community in this region and in the country.

To learn more about PHWPA organization and how you can get involved please visit the Passive House Western PA website.


February 10, 2015
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
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Green Building Alliance
333 E Carson St, Suite 331
Pittsburgh, 15219 United States
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