Thomas J Knittel AIA LEED AP

Design Partner

Thomas Knittel is a design partner with McLennan Design, a global design firm. His projects in the U.S, Asia, Brazil, Middle East and Haiti explore connections between people, place and ecology. His work in biomimicry—taking inspiration from natural systems in order to solve human problems—focuses on integrating models from nature into the design of buildings, communities and cities. He shares these perspectives in academia and conferences, such as a course he developed at USC on bio-inspired facades.

Knittel holds a Masters from the Harvard Graduate School of Design, is a certified biomimicry professional, studied at SCI-Arc, and has received over 30 design awards. He donates his time as the design leader for The William Jefferson Clinton Children’s Center in Port au Prince , a new family learning center and orphanage funded by the USGBC, designed to LEED Platinum and net-zero standards, a project he began at HOK and continues through the Green Warrior Society, the sister organization of MD.

Lectures and Speaking

Generous Cities: Design Informed by the Ecologies of Place

2015 Palapa conference in Los Angeles

Generous Cities: Design Informed by Ecologies of Place

ASU School of Design 2015

LAEP Colloquium: Thomas Knittel-Buildings Imitating Earth’s Creatures Could Save Us from Ourselves

UC Berkeley 2014

Biomimicry for Green Building: Harnessing the genius of nature to help conserve water

USGBC Los Angeles 2014

Generous Cities Informed by Ecologies of Place

BanffSession 2014

Sustaining Our World Lecture: Built Ecologies: Regionalism and Resource Integration in the Built World, College of the Environment and the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, UW, 2013

Nature Knows Best: How Ecologies Inspire the Built Environment

Sea Change AIA/AIBC conference, Vancouver, 2013

Bringing the Genius of a Biome to Create Resiliency in the Built Environment

Living Future Conference 2013

Biomimicry Applied to Design: Case Studies of International Biomimicry Projects

Keynote, Biomimicry Puget Sound Launch, Seattle, November 2012

Project Haiti: A Sustainable Model for Rebuilding in Haiti

Greenbuild and AFH Conference, San Francisco, November 2012

Architecture That Imitates Life

Architecture in Health Panel, Portland Oregon, August 2012

Biomimicry, Fully Integrated Thinking (FIT) and the Future of Sustainable Design

USGBC Headquarters, Washington D.C., March 2012

Nature, Urban Space & Biomimicry

Museum of Vancouver, Vancouver, January 2012 and

Buildex, Vancouver, February 2012

Biomimicry: Architecture and Adaptation

Columbia University, GSAPP, February 2009