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GSAPP Students Receive 2019 John A. Notaro Memorial Scholarship

Alektomich nelsondejesusubri 1
7 January 2020

Current Columbia GSAPP students Alek Tomich and Nelson De Jesus Ubri in the Master of Architecture program are recipients of the 2019 John Notaro Memorial Scholarship. Awarded by the AIA New York State, the scholarship recognizes design excellence in the next generation of architecture practitioners.

Their project “Living with Less Waste” was created during the Fall 2019 Core III Housing Studio Acceleration led by faculty Daisy Ames.

Project Description

Each day, New York City produces 33,000 tons of construction and demolition waste – doubling the daily trash thrown out by residents and businesses. This data compelled us to decide that older buildings do not have to come down for new buildings to go up.

The goal of this project was to improve light and air quality in existing buildings while providing new housing stock using construction techniques designed to densify and offset carbon emissions. We enhanced our site strategy by providing the infrastructure to deal with organic waste on-site in a closed-loop composting cycle.

By choosing to preserve and work within existing buildings, we saved 1,600 tons of solid waste from entering a landfill: equivalent to 54,431 metric tons of CO2 entering the atmosphere. Our approach included other tactics to reinforce our efforts to reduce waste on site: planted balconies, community gardens, green roofs, and mass timber construction, among others.

—Alek Tomich and Nelson de Jesus Ubri

John A. Notaro Memorial Scholarship

The AIA New York State (AIANYS) John A. Notaro Memorial Scholarship was established in 2007 to recognize design excellence in our next generation of architecture practitioners. This annual program serves as a way of engaging and recognizing students who will soon be emerging professionals in design, giving the opportunity to interact, share ideas and concepts with professionals, to advance our every evolving profession. AIANYS, in partnership with the AIA Component Matching Scholarship Grant Program, is sponsoring the annual award and encourage your school’s participation to recognize our future leaders in architecture.

Two project recipients can earn up to $2,500 to be used towards tuition. If there are collaborative efforts, the award will be divided evenly among team members.

Past Columbia GSAPP student winners include Ningxin Huang and Alex Wong (2018), and Mia Zinni (2012).