Salovich Zero+ Campus Design Project
Salovich Zero Plus Campus Design Project


Integrating Architecture & Landscape


Instructor:  Loren Abraham, Adjunct Assistant Professor, School of Architecture and Barry Lehrman, Lecturer/Research Fellow, Department of Landscape Architecture, University of Minnesota

Critics:  Orlyn Miller, Director and Monique McKenzie, Capital Planner, Capital Planning and Project Management, University of Minnesota; Mary Guzowski, Professor, School of Architecture; and Lance Neckar, Professor, Department of Landscape Architecture

Course Format:  3-week studio/seminar (May term), 3 credits

Course Description

This course explores the interrelationships of energy, resources, water, and carbon emissions across building, site and regional scales. It is aimed at students seeking to deepen and enhance their understanding of integrating ecological design performance metrics and modeling into the design and decision-making process. The University of Minnesota Twin City Campus is the venue to investigate the strategic integration of carbon, energy, water and waste management within the building/site, campus, and regional contexts.

Course Objectives         

The primary objective of the course is to conceive of integrated building and landscape design solutions and interventions that can move the University toward a zero emissions, zero-energy, zero water, zero runoff, and zero-waste campus through creative integrated and interdisciplinary approaches to design. Therefore the course seeks to:

  • Envision a Zero+ Approach to design for the campus – what is it, and how do we measure gains in performance?
  • Bridge diverse scales and ecological issues through interdisciplinary collaboration.
  • Explore and apply sustainable design principles, and strategies to creating design proposals that can achieve goals of net-zero energy, water and resource use on campus.


Course Work

Students work in cross-disciplinary teams to investigate the ecological opportunities of integrated zero carbon emissions, zero-energy, zero-water and zero-waste design focusing on the buildings and surrounding landscape along the Church Street corridor. The primary deliverables include an assessment of energy, water and resource flows and relationships (one week) and a final collaborative design project (two weeks) consisting of the following:

  • Develop integrated building/landscape designs proposals that improve the ecological design performance and beautify the campus through strategic integration of high performance and sustainable building design strategies and landscape interventions.
  • Develop integrated solutions that: o Reduce energy, water, resource consumption and waste.
  • Balance water use, rainwater harvesting and infiltration while minimizing runoff
  • Inform the decision-making and planning process
  • Optimizing the intrinsic value of Eco-systems Services on Campus
  • Mitigating urban heat island effect


Project Overview          

There are three projects which are broken into a series of phases:

  • Exercise 1: Baseline inventory at the building/site interface
  • Exercise 2: Zero+ strategies for optimizing performance
  • Exercise 3: Integrated zero+ design strategies addressing carbon, energy, water, runoff, and waste


Integrating Architecture & Landscape Syllabus


Project Statements

Exercise 1: Establishing the Performance Baseline

Exercise 2: Optimizing the Performance Baseline

Exercise 3: Integration and Synthesis

Student Projects

1. Alexander, Garrison, Martinez, and Walsh

2. Breton, Grootaert, and Lowery

3. Czechowicz, Holmberg-Johnson, and Steenrod

4. Stover, Nelson, and DeBritto