The push towards building environmentally sustainable homes and structures has grown increasingly popular with architects, builders, and contractors. But it is more than just a fad for the sake of it: green building is an effort to minimize the carbon footprint that homes and structures leave behind. Many homeowners have made the move towards this lifestyle, and architects and contractors have slowly made the shift to accommodate this increasing demand too.
In Houston, clients will be happy to find companies that have made it their mission to build green. There are many dedicated green-building firms pioneering sustainability as one of their foundational philosophies. With the best green architects on this list, clients can rest assured that their homes will be unique, beautiful, and environmentally sustainable.
The top architects in this list have been ranked according to company profile, experience, services offered, customer satisfaction, awards received, and media features and coverage. With these firms’ quality designs and services, clients can be sure that their discerning tastes and preferences will be satisfied.
3D Green Planet Architects
5504 Ardmore St., Houston, TX 77021
3D Green Planet Architects is an award-winning 3D residential architecture firm committed to creating sustainable 3D house and townhouse designs. The firm is based in Houston, and serves the areas of Houston and East Texas. What sets 3D Green’s residential services apart from the rest is that all of its projects are composed in 3D virtual environments. The firm not only communicates the design using two dimensional plans and elevations, but it also uses 3D imagery, perspectives, virtual walk-throughs and realistic pictures. Under the leadership of the firm’s principal, R. Michael Lee, 3D Green Planet Architects creates sustainable green environments utilizing virtual modeling for commercial projects, feasibility studies, institutional projects, school, and church projects.
20 East Greenway Plaza Suite 410, Houston, TX 77046
Nothing shapes the globally-located, decades-old firm’s philosophy on sustainability more than the belief that everyone has a fundamental responsibility to be good stewards of the world’s natural resources. Corgan seeks to move beyond the approach of simply “using less,” to instead creating buildings that also “do more.” With a deep understanding of the role that the built environment plays in shaping both societies and the physical world, Corgan believes that it can profoundly strengthen communities by creating more resilient and equitable designs. The multi award-winning firm has a flourishing sustainable design practice that is responsible for over 30 million square feet of projects, covering approximately $10.2 billion in construction costs. Its portfolio includes over 100 third party verified projects, and its employment covers 100 Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Accredited Professionals within the firm. The firm is committed to implementing a thoughtful and integrated approach to all its designs, one that balances both the built and natural environment. In 2018, as dedication to this approach, Corgan joined the American Institute of Architects (AIA) 2030 Commitment, which prioritizes energy performance and working toward carbon-neutral buildings.
English + Associates Architects Inc.
1919 Decatur Street, Houston, TX 77007
English + Associates Architects is a full-service architectural and interior design firm specializing in high-performance, green-design solutions. It is a company of professionals driven to exceed the expectations of its clients, believing that optimal design solutions evolve from fully understanding what drives success in its clients’ organizations. English + Associates is committed to being good stewards of the environment and furthering the advancement of the design profession. Sustainability is a commitment that is woven into all of the services the firm provides. For nearly a decade, 85% of its employees have been LEED Accredited Professionals, and in 2010, the firm became a 2030 Carbon Reduction Challenge participant. In addition to striving to reduce the carbon footprints of the buildings it designs, the firm tracks and submits its progress to the AIA 2030 Commitment database. English + Associates believes that the best design decisions are beautiful, meet clients’ needs, and minimize negative impacts on the environment and human health. For the firm, design affects the individual and the community alike.
5828 Langfield Road, Houston, TX 77092
Back in 1975, when few people cared about working in harmony with the environment and micro-climates, LaVerne Williams, principal of Environment Associates, dared to open an ecologically-oriented architectural practice. As a result of this bold and thoughtful move, LaVerne (the “Grandfather of Green Building”) is one of the nation’s top green building professionals and a Texas pioneer of energy-efficient green home design. After starting his company, LaVerne became an outspoken, positive educator about the need for sustainable, energy-saving buildings and lifestyles. Through his willingness to teach and mentor others, his practice and his influence grew. Under his leadership, Environment Associates (EA) has been continuing its commitment to lowering clients’ Living Cost by creating superior living environments for those seeking quality of life at home. The firm’s homes demonstrate the dramatic economic, environmental, and social benefits derived from striving to build sustainably. EAs’ signature work, eaDesign for Life™, enhances livability and comfort in normal times and assures survivability in relative comfort during times of extreme weather and power outages. EA’s unique holistic approach to planning & design significantly lowers its clients’ Living Cost while delivering year-round enjoyment.
2 Houston Center, 909 Fannin Street, Suite 200, Houston, TX 77010
Gensler’s purpose, “to Create a Better World Through the Power of Design” has led it to be a global architectural firm. It practices in 26 locations and has a special focus on client relationships, leadership and talent diversity. Gensler is headed by Diane Hoskins and Andy Cohen, both prestigious fellows of the AIA. For her innovative leadership, Diane, along with Co-CEO Andy Cohen, ranks on Business Insider’s elite “Creators” list, a compilation of the world’s 100 top creative visionaries. As hands-on leaders, Diane and Andy oversee Gensler’s global platform and its day-to-day operations. In their roles, Diane and Andy serve as key contributors to what is acknowledged, by its peers, as the most admired and largest architecture firm in the world, pioneering project types and design innovation strategies for the next century and acknowledged by Fast Company as one of “The World’s Most Innovative Companies.
3200 Southwest Freeway Suite 900, Houston, Texas 77027
HOK is a design, architecture, engineering and planning firm with 23 offices on three continents. The firm is led by Bill Hellmuth, a fellow of the AIA, and a LEED Accredited Professional. Bill serves as the Chairman and CEO of HOK, as well as the design principal for the Washington, D.C. office. He is known for his creative design approach, innovative problem-solving and exceptional client service. Bill joined HOK’s St. Louis studio in 1991 and was appointed to lead the firm’s office in Washington, D.C. in 1993. In 2005, he was appointed firm-wide president after more than a decade as design principal, and in 2016 he became CEO and then chairman in 2017. Under Bill’s leadership, HOK has been recognized by the Engineering News-Record as the #1 Green Building A/E firm, and in 2019, was recognized with the distinction as one of Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Architecture Firms.”
Jay Baker Architects
3815 Montrose Suite 205, Houston, TX 77006
Jay Baker Architects was founded in 1991 and has since produced recognized work at a local and national level. Jay Baker, head of the company, became a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects (FAIA) in 2002. Jay and his team believe that to make architecture with quality, they must look beyond the project and see the context in which the project will be completed. This philosophy guides the firm’s approach to collaboration, as Jay facilitates the collaborative process with the talented and enthusiastic people in his office, and more importantly, with the client. As collaboration leads to advocacy, his clients share authorship of something that is readily familiar to them, but that they hadn’t seen before. This unique approach has led the firm to garner 33 local and regional design awards since its inception in 1991.
6909 Portwest Drive, Houston, TX 77024
Nothing summarizes Kirksey Architecture better than its motto, “Healthy buildings, healthy people, healthy planet.” The firm was founded in 1971, when a young architectural intern named John Kirksey, just one year out of college, with a single project and an entrepreneurial spirit, set out to create the firm now known as Kirksey Architecture — a leader in the architectural field in Texas. As the only Houston-based firm to be recognized by the US Green Building Council (USGBC) as a LEED Proven Provider, Kirksey has the depth of experience to deliver timely LEED certifications that optimize value while keeping cost premiums low. The firm’s Proven Provider status allows for abbreviated review periods and an overall streamlined LEED certification process. Its Sustainability Team-–an in-house group of sustainability specialists-–are responsible for 100+ LEED certified projects spanning five rating systems and totaling more than 35 million square feet. At Kirksey, the firm greatly values each of its members, its clients, community, and the earth. As architects, designers, and planners, the team at Kirksey believes it is their responsibility to design high-performing, healthy buildings that positively impact the people, environment, and communities they serve. Kirksey does this by creating facilities that are resource-efficient, site and community enhancing, and that provide a healthy and enjoyable experience for the people within them.
Studio RED Architects
1320 McGowen St., Houston, TX 77004
The philosophy of Studio RED Architects is fueled by the desire to provide quality architecture, focusing on design excellence, superior project management and service. Specializing in unique designs within a client’s budget, Studio RED Architects provides hands-on principal involvement no matter how big or small the project. The firm is led by Pete Ed Garrett, FAIA, the founding partner of Studio RED Architects. Pete has over 30 years of award-winning architecture and design experience. His projects have been recognized from a local to an international level, and he has many awards for his work. Under Pete’s leadership, Studio RED takes the “green” process beyond the LEED accounting system and creates a new outlook of long lasting, responsible design choices. Studio RED is experienced in sustainability rating systems including LEED for Neighborhood Development, LEED for New Construction (and Major Retrofits), and LEED for Existing Building Operation & Maintenance.