Building environments where people live means creating meaningful spaces that resonate with its locale. It requires an architect who can think holistically about a project, and merge public and private priorities to craft the next great neighborhood.
To help you choose the right designer equipped to handle any building requirements you might require, our team has curated a list of the best multifamily architects in Boston, Massachusetts. These firms were selected for their accreditations, certifications, and professional affiliations. We also considered the recognition each firm has received in the form of industry awards, client reviews, and press features. We have laid out the range of services the firms offer, their specializations, and the length of time they have been in the industry.
Top Multifamily Architects
Elkus Manfredi Architects
25 Drydock Ave., Boston, MA 02210
About Elkus Manfredi Architects
Elkus Manfredi Architects is a full-service design firm providing architecture, master planning, urban design, interior architecture, historic preservation, space planning, programming, and experiential graphic design. Its diverse portfolio of award-winning work includes planning and design for environments of work, living, learning, play, and innovation. The firm is focused on understanding clients’ long-term strategic goals and supporting these goals in all assignments. Elkus Manfredi is a member of the US Green Building Council (USGBC) and is a signatory to the American Institute of Architects (AIA) 2030 Commitment, working towards the goal of carbon-neutral buildings by the year 2030.
David P. Manfredi is the CEO and Founding Principal of the company. He is a Fellow of the AIA (FAIA), and a member of the Boston Preservation Alliance, International Council of Shopping Centers, Commercial Real Estate Development Association, and Urban Land Institute (ULI). David serves on the Boston Civic Design Commission and the ULI Boston Advisory Board. In addition, he advocates for building and protecting vital, sustainable, durable urban places as a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Accredited Professional (LEED AP). He steers Elkus Manfredi in reinventing urban precincts into 21st-century mixed-use environments such as One Seaport. The project’s two interactive mixed-use buildings cover two city blocks, each building with a three-story base of retail, restaurant, and entertainment venues. Atop the two podia are two 22-story residential towers containing 832 apartments.
Hacin + Associates
500 Harrison Ave. Studio 4F, Boston, MA 02118
About Hacin + Associates
Hacin + Associates (H+A) is a multidisciplinary architecture and design studio located in Boston’s South End. Its team approaches each design problem by examining and often reinterpreting the physical and social context of a particular site and program to find pragmatic solutions. Beyond the firm’s client-focused approach to problem solving, H+A regularly collaborates with prestigious design firms, artists, custom fabricators, academic institutions, and community organizations on its projects. The company’s services include architecture and interior design, graphic design, historic preservation, planning, and urban design. H+A’s work in these areas has won prestigious local and national awards from the Boston Society of Architects (BSA), and the International Interior Design Association (IIDA).
H+A is led by its President, David J. Hacin, FAIA. David has served for nearly twenty years as a Mayoral appointee to the Boston Civic Design Commission, the City of Boston’s design review panel for significant projects that impact the public realm. Additionally, he has been an active volunteer at BSA, the Design Industry Groups of Massachusetts (DIGMA), Historic Boston Inc., and the Boston Center for the Art. Along with the H+A team, David’s efforts resulted in the design of 150 Camden.
The building draws on the rhythm and scale of nearby South End buildings on Tremont Street and Columbus Avenue. The materiality and placement of the brick exercises a contemporary interpretation of the mansard roof condition. The “head” of the building geometrically relates to its neighbor, creating a strong focal point along Camden Street.
110 Canal Street, Boston, MA 02114
About CBT Architects
CBT works on a wide range of projects, including urban district master planning, large-scale mixed-use developments, civic and cultural structures, modern workplace interiors, and campus planning and design, both domestically and globally. Architects, urban planners, interior designers, and other design specialists at CBT collaborate to create solutions that are tailored to the demands of their clients. To address issues and give assistance, the firm’s design process begins with strategic collaboration with clients, consultants, communities, and government organizations.
Principals Alfred Wojciechowski, David Nagahiro, and Christopher Hill are members of the AIA, with Alfred and David certified as LEED APs. Alfred contributes as a member of the AIA Large Firm Roundtable, AIA Dean’s Forum, and BSA, and sits as a Board Member of Boston’s Back Bay Association. On the other hand, David is on the Board of Artists for Humanity, the Board of the Boston Preservation Alliance, and the Editorial Board of Architecture Boston. Meanwhile, Christopher has guest lectured at the AIA National Conference, and the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Their leadership has established a culture of design excellence at CBT, demonstrated by their work on Pier 4 Residences.
The team delivered technical, market, and design expertise to the LEED Gold Certified waterfront condominium, designing all of the unit interiors as well as the marketing center at the pier’s end. CBT was the major point of contact with the Boston Planning and Development Agency for this project, acting as the main arm in seeking approvals and permits in the City of Boston and the Seaport District.
221 Hampshire Street, Cambridge, MA 02139
PCA is a combined interior design, and architecture and planning practice that specializes in multi-family housing, retail, education, hospitality, office, and mixed-use developments. It offers all levels of planning, from urban planning to site master planning. The firm ensures that it completely comprehends its clients’ architectural and business aims before assisting clients with creating tenant design criteria and instilling a sense of place to their site to attract people. This skill in building is reflected in all of PCA’s designs. Regardless of the project type, the company adheres to sustainable design standards as a signatory of the AIA 2030 Commitment and the LP50 Healthy Materials Pledge.
David Chilinski, the Co-Founder and President of PCA, is a Fellow of the AIA certified by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB). Apart from guest lecturing at MIT and Harvard’s Graduate School of Design, he is a member of the United Way Real Estate Committee as well as the Harvard Square Business Association Council Board. David guided the PCA team in developing the Serenity Apartments, which acquired LEED Gold certification.
Serenity transitions seamlessly from urban high rise to parkside townhouse scales. A two-story view corridor runs the length of the structure, creating a fascinating building facade from the street. Passersby get a glimpse of what is happening inside, which gives the structure a sense of openness.
160 State Street Floor 6, Boston, MA 02109
About CUBE 3
CUBE 3 offers a wide range of architectural, interior design and planning services for mixed-use and campus master planning, academic, health care, retail, residential and office projects. Every project undergoes an internal sustainability analysis, which discovers prospects for alternative construction systems, design options, and opportunities for certification. Its methodology is bolstered by the use of adaptable project management technologies that efficiently collect and disseminate information while maintaining accurate documentation of the project.
Nicholas Middleton, Brian O’Connor, and Jon Cardello, all members of the AIA, are the driving force of CUBE 3. Jon is NCARB-certified, whereas Nik is a Chartered Member of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), and both the Architects’ Registration Councils of the United Kingdom and Europe. Brian carries extensive experience in base building and interior design for healthcare, commercial developers, and residences. Their joint expertise has strengthened CUBE 3’s practice, which has resulted in many structures such as the Broadstone Bare Cove.
The Cove is a two-building, 220-unit multi-family development with bike storage, a sky lounge, patios, a pool, and courtyards. Its residential units have high ceilings and huge windows, giving the open plan layouts a light and airy feel. The Builders and Remodelers Association of Greater Boston awarded the project the Gold Prism Award (BRAGB).
115 Kingston St., Boston, MA 02111
About Utile, Inc.
Utile is a Boston-based design firm that provides urban design and planning, as well as architectural services using a research-based approach. The firm is committed to building more just and equitable settings by seeking out the viewpoints of individuals from the communities it serves, and promoting inclusivity among its partners. The company champions racial equality throughout the design process, sourcing materials and specifying items that support minority-owned enterprises. Utile’s focus on environmental sustainability is evident across all of its work, especially with its affordable housing and community planning projects.
Four principals run Utile and bring together creative, technical, and management proficiency. Michael LeBlanc, is a member of the AIA, and is on the Board of Directors for the Boston Preservation Alliance. Co-principal Matthew Littell is a LEED AP with in-depth knowledge of building and zoning codes and the regulatory process in relation to urban design and housing. Mimi Love has recently been appointed as a Commissioner for BCDC, with broad experience in master planning. Finally, Founding Principal Tim Love, FAIA and LEED AP, served as strategic advisor on the Imagine Boston 2030 citywide plan, and the comprehensive master plan for Boston City Hall and Plaza. His passion for the relationship between individual works of architecture and the larger city inspires the Utile team to seek out design opportunities by fully exploiting and synthesizing hidden challenges. Together, the four principals push Utile forward to create many long-lasting structures.
One example is 7 East Springfield Street. In terms of massing and material, the building’s exterior design is sensitive to its historic setting. The lower three levels are brick-clad, while the fourth and fifth stories are dark grey terracotta, reflecting the surrounding mansard roofs.
51 Sleeper St. 6th Floor, Boston, MA 02210
Bergmeyer is a group of architects, strategists, brand specialists, and interior and graphic designers who work together as a Design Collaborative. Its design approach forges proactive connections with clients and project teams in order to foster a shared sense of ownership throughout the whole creative process. Bergmeyer’s services encompass architecture, interior design, branding and graphic design, visual merchandising, program management, sustainability consulting, placemaking, and event design. These services cater to retail, restaurant, workplace, commercial, residential, academic, cultural, hospitality, and healthcare markets.
Bergmeyer President Mike Davis’ organizational leadership skills have helped Bergmeyer rapidly evolve and sustain its strategic growth despite the many unforeseen challenges over the last couple of years. Apart from having sat as president of the BSA board, he is affiliated with the USGBC, ULI, and NAIOP as a LEED AP and FAIA. The firm’s most senior practitioner in multi-family housing design, Mike is experienced in adaptive reuse and new construction, and has been Principal-in-Charge of some of our most significant housing, mixed use, and commercial building projects. Licensed in 16 US states and three Canadian Provinces, Mike’s specialties cover leading a multi-stakeholder participatory design process, design within the public approvals process, sustainable design of historic buildings, and housing affordability.
With a decidedly modern touch, the Kendrick is a multifamily housing unit that accentuates classic design features influenced by New England heritage. A resident lounge, bar and gaming room, demonstration kitchen, media lounge, gym, fitness studio, and dog spa give the Kendrick the appearance of a boutique hotel.
332 Congress St. Floor 6, Boston, MA 02210
About Merge Architects
Merge Architects, which was founded by Elizabeth Whittaker, develops a variety of commercial, institutional, retail, private residential, multi-family housing, and graphic and furniture design. The practice coordinates with the client and teams of fabricators, artists, artisans, and engineers to redefine the city’s civic and social limits. Working via a cross-disciplinary as well as a cross-production approach, Merge incorporates both digital fabrication and handcrafted elements. Several accolades have been given to the company such as 15 AIA/BSA awards.
Elizabeth has served on the Board of Directors of the BSA/AIA, as well as the Rotch Traveling Fellowship Committee and the Nominating Committee. She was awarded the AIA Young Architects Award in 2015. Similarly, Merge Architects was recognized by Architectural Record with the Design Vanguard Award, and the Emerging Voices Award from the Architectural League of New York. Elizabeth is the recipient of the Next Generation Leader award from Architectural Record in 2017 — an honor that awards one female architect in the country each year. Additionally, she was appointed in 2021 by the US Department of State’s Bureau of Overseas Building Operations (OBO) to serve a two-year term on the Industry Advisory Group (IAG), a group of voices that oversee the US international architectural projects throughout the world.
Under Elizabeth’s visionary leadership, the firm has many successful projects under its belt, one of which is the West Broadway Housing. Given the infill nature of its long and narrow site, maximizing light exposure and air flow on the shorter ends of the space was a big challenge. Merge addressed this by creating an external light in the center of the site that corresponded with windows, enabling light movement and passive cooling and ventilation.
580 Harrison Ave, Suite 2W, Boston MA 02118
Embarc provides architecture, zoning approval, interior design, historic renovation, and master planning services and works on modern multi-family housing, restaurants, college campuses, and retail spaces. The company establishes an intimate connection with its sites and communities to connect people cognitively and culturally, and the data it collects drives every element of its work. With a background in dealing with state and federal municipal bodies, the firm can effectively represent its clients and their projects throughout the planning and zoning process. This is just one of the features that distinguishes Embarc.
Founder Dartagnan Brown oversees the majority of the firm’s projects through the approval process by working closely with the Boston Planning and Development Authority, various neighborhood groups, city councilors, and the Zoning Board of Appeals. After having spent the last 20 years working on some of Boston’s most impactful projects, he and his team, lead by Principals Rob, Ryan, Cindy and Bill have consciously developed a diverse body of work for Embarc. One excellent representative is the Arya. To produce its dynamic façade, the structure was built from modularized panels and an extruded fin system. The modules change identities depending on the activities of the spaces beyond.
156 Milk St. Suite 3, Boston, MA 02109
About ZeroEnergy Design
ZED is an architecture and mechanical design firm that specializes in new construction and major renovations of award winning modern green homes and buildings. The firm’s expertise in green buildings is their norm, with a 10+ year AIA 2030 Commitment, and a portfolio of outstanding energy performance projects including Passive House, Net Zero Energy, Net Positive Energy, and Zero Fossil Fuel Consumption. Professionals from the disciplines of architecture, mechanical design, and sustainability work together to create holistic solutions as part of the firm’s integrated design approach.
Stephanie Horowitz is the Managing Director for ZED, and a Certified Passive House Consultant. Her work has received a design award from BSA as well as a Citation for Sustainable Design. On top of this, she was recently named Boston Home Magazine’s Best Sustainable Architect. Stephanie is a founding board member and President of Passive House Massachusetts, and served on the Massachusetts Design Selection Board as the AIA of Massachusetts’ representative. Her expertise in energy efficient design and collaboration with ZED’s Senior Project Manager, John Mucciarone, proved to be paramount in the renovation of the Porter Road Apartments in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
The Porter Road Apartments constitutes an extensive renovation of a historic 26 unit apartment building near Porter Square in Cambridge. The affordable housing project sought both state and federal historic tax credits. The 27,000 square foot renovation includes restoration of the historic masonry façade, continuous interior insulation and air sealing of the masonry, window and roof replacement with insulation, structural upgrades, addition of a sprinkler system, redesign to include accessible units, design of an accessible entrance, redesign to include an additional unit, and modernization of upper floor unit layouts with new bathrooms, kitchens, and mechanical ventilation. The project was publicly bid under MA Chapter 149 and is near complete. Sustainable attributes also include a significant focus upon salvage and reuse, a sprayfoam-free enclosure, energy savings (projected with an energy model), low-no VOC finishes, and ultra-low flow plumbing fixtures. The project is expected to achieve Enterprise Green Communities certification.
Davis Square Architects
240A Elm Street, Somerville, MA 02144
About Davis Square Architects
Bestowed with the Cambridge Preservation Award and Timothy Anderson Award for Excellence in Historic Rehabilitation, Davis Square Architects is an esteemed architectural design and planning firm that focuses on creating sustainable communities, and providing responsive, affordable service to its clients. Principals Cliff Boehmer, Ross Speer, and Iric Rex are all members of the AIA and each have years of experience to back them up. Cliff reviews state-funded housing proposals for the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), and consults with many communities and developers in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. He co-founded Davis Square Architects with Ross, who has over 30 years of professional experience with multi-family residential developments and commercial spaces in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. Co-principal Iric specializes in detailed building analysis, and consulting with public agencies regarding multi-family housing and smart growth. As a LEED AP, he prompts the firm’s application of sustainable design principles. Their combined specialties propel Davis Square’s practice, and paved the way for 206 West Broadway. The firm converted two dilapidated empty lots into a mixed-use structure featuring 16 affordable units and ground-floor retail space. The project actively participates in the preservation and revitalization of the South Boston community.
75 Commercial Street, Boston, MA 02109
Photo by John Horner Photography
About ThoughtCraft Architects
ThoughtCraft Architects works on a broad spectrum of project typologies and sizes in the form of residential, commercial, and the adaptive reuse of historic buildings. To elevate the quality of mixed-use and multifamily projects, the firm’s design methodology focuses on three clients – the end-users who should feel at home with an enhanced living experience, the community who should feel a sense of pride that this project resides in their neighborhood, and the developer who should receive increased value through a better experience and increased ROI with thoughtful design and execution. They make all priorities align.
Founded in 2005, ThoughtCraft’s founding partners have deep roots. Chris Johns and Jason Hart studied together through three stages of design education, in Florida and at M.I.T., and practiced together at two studios before founding their own firm. Chris has designed mixed-use, multifamily housing, adaptive reuse, municipal, academic, and commercial office buildings in a variety of states across the United States and Canada. Jason was employed at Renzo Piano’s office in Paris, where he worked on the design of the widely-acclaimed Morgan Library and Museum. ThoughtCraft’s unique research and design processes were born from these common experiences and refined over years of collaboration. They extended the same grit and creativity to ThoughtCraft’s projects as they did with 1943 Dot Avenue.
This apartment complex is a unified group of apartments where each unit, like the community’s triple-deckers, is visually conveyed on the outside and in the corridors. This creates an unusual horizontal, cantilevered facade in a wood-framed over podium multi-family structure. Also, structural insulated panels (SIPs) and a VRF HVAC system were used to achieve an energy efficient building with improved indoor air quality.
101 Summer Street, Boston, MA 02110
About ICON Architecture
A Boston-based, 50-person, women-owned company, ICON Architecture designs new concepts for living. ICON’s work focuses on sustainable projects ranging from urban transit-oriented development to innovative adaptive reuse, and from low-rise to high-rise construction. ICON has contributed to the design and construction of over 20,000 housing units throughout New England. ICON’s sustainable communities seamlessly integrate high-performance, passive house and modular designs, using construction technologies that reduce energy consumption, and improve resident comfort and building performance.
Nancy Ludwig FAIA LEED AP is President and Senior Principal of ICON. Nancy sits on the boards of Boston ULI, AIA New England, Boston Architectural College and HomeStart, a non-profit seeking to prevent homelessness in Greater Boston. She handles ICON’s creative design staff and multi-million-dollar projects while staying sensitive to local and regional settings like Finch Cambridge. These 100 homes represent the first and largest affordable Passive House building in Massachusetts, employing holistic sustainable principles. Inspired in form and materiality by the urban wildland of Fresh Pond Reservoir across the street, the façade is warm and playful, with tree-like columns and roof lines evoking spreading wings. All-electric HVAC systems are designed for healthy, comfortable living and low energy bills. Exterior and interior amenity spaces are thoughtfully connected to promote Active Design, with a top floor roof deck offering spectacular views of the reservoir and beyond.
315 A Street Ste. A, Boston, MA 02210
About Zephyr Architects
A recipient of the Boston Award, Zephyr Architects is a full-service design firm based in Boston’s Fort Point neighborhood. It operates on the belief that architecture and design should be accessible to everyone and have a wide range of applications in our daily lives. At Zephyr, pre-design planning and feasibility studies, urban design, zoning and variance approval assistance, and a full range of architectural services are made available to clients. It has authored softwares such as CA-Documents and LocalSource that give the firm a leg up in construction management.
Jason Arndt is the Founding Principal of Zephyr. He is a LEED AP and a software developer who has won the Engineering News-Records’ Engineering News-Records’ 20 Under 40 Award. He develops software that guides his creative process in architectural design, from small residential designs to large commercial developments. Following Jason and the Zephyr team’s contemporary approach is 9 Jeffries Street. The project is a modest, contemporary building that blends well with its environment. Zephyr embedded the condominium in the urban fabric and crafted it to simultaneously point to the future with gracefulness and humility.
68 Harrison Avenue 5th Floor, Boston, MA 02111
About Context Architecture
Context Architecture takes on public safety, religious, multi-family housing, and municipal projects under the direction of Principal Jeff Shaw. The firm is passionate about staying sensitive to every community’s perspective when creating structures that join it. The company is also passionate about sustainability and is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). Additionally, principal Jeff Shaw and many key team members are LEED certified.
A recognized expert in public safety and institutional and religious design, Jeff’s award-winning design work has been recognized by the AIA’s Interfaith Forum on Religion, Art, and Architecture, and the Massachusetts Historical Commission. He chairs Boston’s Park Street Church Facilities Committee, and is a member of their Finance & Administration Committee. Jeff is also a member of the Boston Preservation Alliance’s Development Committee and BSA’s Building Enclosure Council. A product of Jeff and his team’s reliable work ethic is this Pine Street Inn. Context Architecture created this 10-unit affordable housing building to offer permanent homes for formerly homeless elders. The dwelling units are complemented with a variety of support areas for social and medical services.