Matthew Berman, Assoc. AIA, and Andrew Kotchen, Assoc. AIA, first rose to national prominence in 2006, when they won Global Green USA’s design competition for energy-efficient affordable housing in New Orleans. Since then their New York–based firm, workshop/apd, has continued to explore ways to bring good design to more people—while still doing the high-end, custom residential projects that make up the majority of its work.
For example, Berman and Kotchen designed a product line for the Italian kitchen company Aster Cucine that launched in 2011. They’ve also developed SpruceBox, a Web-based visualization tool for kitchens and baths, to help consumers make decisions on products, layouts, and finishes. SpruceBox currently is on hold, but it may return as the economy rebounds.
The firm’s interiors department has grown over the past couple of years, as has its range of project types. In addition to apartment and loft renovations, Berman and Kotchen have their first restaurant under construction, as well as a conversion of an existing West Village building into 55 multifamily units. And their commitment to sustainability has remained strong. “A high-performance building is a responsible building,” Kotchen says. “Any good professional today is doing them.”
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years in practice: 13 / projects completed in 2011: 21 / firm size: 22 / areas of interest: custom, multifamily, interiors, commercial, digital fabrication, hospitality / portrait: Arthur Cohen