More Navigation

John Quale

Professor / Director of Architecture

Photo: true

Contact Information

Office Location: Pearl Hall Rm 124
Phone: 277-1199
Curriculum Vitae




John Quale, LEED AP BD+C, Associate AIA, is Director and Professor of Architecture at the University of New Mexico School of Architecture + Planning.  His expertise is in sustainable design, affordable housing, prefabrication, the environmental impact of construction, and collaborative and integrated design processes. 

From 2000 to 2014, he was on the faculty of the University of Virginia School of Architecture, most recently serving as the Director of the Graduate Architecture program. Prior to that, he spent seven years in New York City working for notable firms, including four years as a project manager for Architecture Research Office (ARO).  While there, he led three projects that won important design awards and were published nationally (Colorado House, Capital Z Partners offices and Soho Loft).  He also worked for Richard Meier & Partners (on the Getty Center in Los Angeles), and briefly for William McDonough & Partners (on a Herman Miller manufacturing facility) and Perkins & Will. 

At UVA, he initiated and served as Director of the ecoMOD project.  Since 2004, interdisciplinary teams of students (working with faculty, staff and professionals) have designed, built and evaluated eight prefabricated housing units for affordable housing organizations.  In ecoREMOD, the sister project to ecoMOD, teams have helped renovate or add to 11 existing housing units for low-income residents.  Of the 19 ecoMOD and ecoREMOD projects, three have achieved the US Green Building Council’s LEED Platinum rating and two have achieved Passive House standard.  Quale received half of a $2.45 million grant used to commercialize one of the ecoMOD homes (originally designed and built by students for Habitat for Humanity).  A modular homebuilder completed two Passive House Standard versions of the design for two affordable housing organizations.  The project is coming with Quale to UNM, and over the next year or so, it will evolve and become relevant to the New Mexico context.

Quale was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Tokyo and the Thomas Jefferson Fellow at Cambridge University Downing College. He is the author of Sustainable, Affordable, Prefab:  the ecoMOD Project, which was included on Dwell Magazine’s 2013 ‘required reading’ list of books in prefab.  He is also co-author and co-editor (with Ryan Smith) of OFFSITE:  Constructing a Post-Industrial Future, forthcoming from Routledge in 2016.  In 2004, he authored Trojan Goat:  A Self-Sufficient House, (preface by Kenneth Frampton) about his leadership of the 2002 UVA Solar Decathlon Team a national design/build house competition sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy.  He is also the author of several peer-reviewed articles and essays, and the ecoMOD Project has been cited extensively.  His work and / or teaching has been featured on CNN, Marketplace (American Public Media), HGTV, DIY Network, Virginia Public Radio, and in various publications including Architect Magazine, Metropolis Magazine, Architectural Record, Dwell, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Environmental Building News, Sustain OSC Magazine (UK), and Hors Serie: Science et Vie (France).

He has received numerous awards, including the 2013 Architect Magazine R+D Award, the AIA Education Honor Award, the NCARB Grand Prize, the USGBC Excellence in Green Building Curriculum Award, and finalist status for the UN World Habitat Award.  In 2010, he was the University of Virginia nominee for Carnegie / CASE U.S. Professor of the Year Award.  Other awards include:  the UVA Alumni Association Teaching Award, the Seven Society Teaching Award, the ACSA Creative Achievement Award, the ACSA Collaborative Practice Award, the ACSA / AIA Housing Design Education Award, the VSBN Green Innovation Award for Best Green Residential Project, the Design Like You Give a Damn LIVE Autodesk Sustainability Prize, Virginia Society AIA Prize for Design Research and Scholarship, the AHIP Housing Hero Award, and the Eldon Fields Wood Design Professional of the Year Award.

Quale is currently serving in the higher education seat on the U.S. Green Building Council’s Board of Directors. He has also served on the University of Virginia School of Architecture Foundation Board of Directors, the SEED Advisory Board, the Albemarle County Architectural Review Board and the Virginia Sustainable Building Network Board of Directors. 

He has given a keynote or invited public lectures at various U.S. and international venues, including the National Building Museum, the Urban Center, and universities including Cambridge, Oxford, the Architectural Association, Oxford Brookes, Sheffield, Tokyo, Princeton, Cornell, Ohio State, Michigan and several others. He has served on the international jury for NKA Foundation’s Mud House Competition, the Masdar Headquarters in Abu Dhabi, the AIA-COTE Top Ten Green Projects Award, the Modular Building Institute Awards of Distinction, the New York City “What If?“ Competition, the Fulbright Scholar Review Committee, and the UVA Faculty Teaching Award Committee.

Extended CV