Wellness and Design for Sea Level Rise

Wellness is a timely topic in the midst of a global health crisis. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, human and planetary health have been prominent in popular and scholarly publications. Faculty in several disciplines at the University of Virginia School of Architecture focus on wellness and the School’s Center for Design + Health showcases our diverse efforts. My scholarship at UVA and built work with Crisman+Petrus Architects develops sustainable design strategies for buildings, landscapes, and cities confronting climate change and sea level rise. While coastal Virginia experiences significant sea level rise that threatens human well-being, the creative and technical expertise of Virginia’s architects is needed to holistically imagine and integrate buildings, public spaces, and infrastructure in unprecedented ways.

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Designer Q & A: Lauren Shumate, AIA

Contributor: Margaret Hancock

How did you come to architecture as a profession?

As an undergrad, I began studying historic preservation at a small liberal arts school. I quickly realized that my personal interest in the built environment was not just about researching, but about designing. So, I transferred to the University of Virginia and switched my academic focus to architecture — and loved every minute of it. After graduation, I worked for an architecture firm in Philadelphia for several years before returning to UVA for graduate school.

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