Raising the Bar for Innovation
Award-winning architecture firm Magnusson Architecture and Planning (MAP) announced that Fernando Villa, AIA, LEED AP, has been named Principal and Director of Design. As Principal, Villa joins Magnus Magnusson, AIA, LEED AP, Founding Principal, and Christine Hunter, AIA, LEED AP, Principal and Director of Housing, in the leadership of MAP. Villa is an expert with two decades of experience in all types of residential projects and a staunch advocate for sustainability, particularly for affordable housing. With the promotion of Villa to Principal, MAP expands its design capabilities and brings the next generation of leadership to the forefront.
“For several years, Fernando Villa has been the driving force behind MAP’s award-winning design. He is a source of fresh ideas that have started a new phase for MAP, grounded by our strong legacy,” said Magnusson. “As Principal, he will continue to apply his talents to all types of housing – including affordable, market rate, senior, supportive and others – and raise the bar for innovative architecture.”
Since Villa joined the firm in 2007, he has designed award-winning, high-profile projects, maintaining the firm’s reputation for thoughtful housing design that enhances urban communities. These include award-winning projects such as 22 Tarrytown Road Workforce Housing in Greenburgh, New York (LEED Silver) and Creston Avenue Residence in The Bronx (targeting LEED Platinum). In addition to housing, he has a background in hospitality, cultural, historic preservation and adaptive reuse projects.
Projects designed by Villa that are expected to start construction this year include St. Augustine Apartments (targeting LEED Gold) and Webster Green in The Bronx (targeting LEED Platinum), as well as Ludlow Commons and Cottage Gardens Housing Phase 3 in Yonkers. This month, MAP was awarded Phase II of Livonia Avenue Initiative by the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development.
“In my new role, I will continue to push the envelope for high-quality, sustainable design for all of MAP’s projects, including housing projects with limited budget,” said Villa. “The results of our hard work bring great satisfaction to our team and, most importantly, to our clients and occupants of their buildings. I am delighted that MAP’s projects continue to receive top recognition.”
In 2014, the American Institute of Architects’ New York Chapter awarded MAP the Andrew J. Thomas Pioneer in Housing Award for its leadership in urban revitalization and community building. Villa also co-chairs the New York Chapter’s Housing Committee, which received the Vice President Certificate of Excellence from the Chapter. Other recent awards are the Housing Design Award from the Boston Society of Architects and Residence of the Year for Innovation in the Field from the Supportive Housing Network of New York.
In addition to co-chairing the AIA’s Housing Committee, Villa is an advisor for the Designing Affordability exhibition that opens in October 2015. He is also active in the New York Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council, the Architectural League of New York and the Municipal Arts Society. He is a frequent lecturer in New York City and in his native country of Colombia. Villa has a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from Pontificia Bolivariana University in Medellin.
Magnusson Architecture and Planning (MAP) is an award-winning, full-service architecture and planning firm in New York City committed to sustainable development that builds vibrant, healthy communities. The firm specializes in housing, educational and community facilities, mixed-use developments, and community planning.
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