KTGY’s Sustainability-Focused Research + Development Concept The Branches Wins MHN Excellence Gold Award in Unbuilt Category

December 5, 2022

The Branches Concept proposes an array of design strategies for high-performance multifamily design, with the intent of reducing environmental impact throughout a building’s functionality.

TYSONS, Va. – KTGY, a leading full-service architecture, branding, interior and planning firm focused on residential, retail, hospitality and mixed-use developments, today announced that the firm’s Research + Development concept, The Branches, has won the MHN 2022 Excellence Gold Award in the category of the “Best Unbuilt.” Sponsored by Multi-Housing News, the publication’s 16th annual awards program honors the industry’s outstanding deals, projects and professionals. The winners were revealed at MHN’s awards event in New York City on Thursday, December 1st.

“The Branches R+D concept proposes an array of design strategies for high-performance sustainable multifamily design, with the intent of reducing environmental impact throughout a building’s functionality,” said Marissa Kasdan, associate AIA and director, design with KTGY.

The concept seeks to provide solutions for the findings from the 2018 Global Status Report produced by The Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction which state that the building and construction industry is responsible for 39 percent of global CO2 emissions. Of that number, less than one-third is generated from building construction and materials, while the remaining portion is attributed to building operations.

Kasdan continues, “Building orientation, energy collection and storage, and alternative water and waste management strategies can help alleviate the operational carbon of newly constructed buildings and meet the needs of the environmentally-conscious home seeker.”

The Branches concept addresses a specific site in Washington, D.C. However, the design strategies utilized can be modified to respond to the location-specific parameters of any given site, notes Kasdan.

The Branches concept design strategies include naturally ventilated units, directional solar shading and open corridors to reduce ongoing energy consumption, while angled photovoltaic panels maximize the efficiency of solar gain. On-site rainwater collection and composting, energy-generating fitness equipment and a sculptural wind turbine collectively craft a sustainability-focused residential building.

“In addition to a series of high-performance design elements, environmental education components and resident wellness features integrate throughout The Branches building design for a holistic approach to sustainable building design,” said Kasdan. “Subtle design choices, such as widened feature stairs, biophilic interior design, and prioritized alternative transportation, encourage lifestyle choices promoting individual health and wellness. A river of harvested rainwater runs under the floor of the residential lobby and unique amenities such as a butterfly garden and energy-generating fitness equipment highlight the environmentally conscious design.”

Kasdan continues, “Design solutions outlined in The Branches not only appeal to certain demographics who place a high value on living sustainably, but also seek to understand the opportunities and challenges of sustainable strategies before they are dictated by the energy code. This ensures that future projects will incorporate the best designs to achieve both project- and climate-specific goals.”

For more information about The Branches, visit ktgy.com/work/the-branches/.