Event COTE Meeting

June 9, 2022 - 12:00pm

This event has already occurred.


AIA Austin
801 W 12th St
78701 Austin
Phone: 5124524332


Flourishing in Place: Indoor space as a health intervention opportunity

Presenters: Gayle Borst, Noralinda Ureste

Join us for our first brown bag/bring your own lunch event!

Indoor spaces are a dominant pollutant exposure for our society. They can also be spaces that promote thriving health. These facts are both a challenge and an opportunity for the AEC industry and for society at large. Join us as we present the design strategies used to develop safe, healthy spaces in the first of six cabins for health-challenged and health-conscious travelers. While this project was designed specifically to accommodate occupants with demanding health requirements, the principles and specifics apply to creating a healthy environment for all people. Additionally, the benefits of healthy construction is not constrained to interior spaces, reduced pollutant exposure also benefits the surrounding ecosystems. The Flourish Here retreat represents an ambitious, pioneering project in the area of healthy homes and indoor spaces designed to promote human thriving. Construction on these vacation rentals is expected to begin this summer and future AIA tours will be offered as construction is underway.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Identify enclosure strategies to mitigate building failure risks and maintain healthy indoor air quality.
  2. Describe how building with natural materials reduces chemical exposures and improves human health.
  3. Apply strategies for creating indoor air quality redundancy with robust mechanicals.
  4. Capture rainwater for potable water to reduce chemical exposures and promote human health.

This is a hybrid event: in-person at AIA Austin or on Zoom. Zoom information will be sent with registration confirmation.

Registration is required. This event is free and open to the public, or offers CE credit with a paid ticket. 1 LU/HSW. All sales are final.

Register Now

About the Speakers

Nora Ureste

Noralinda Ureste is owner/developer at Flourish Here retreat, vacation rentals for chemically sensitive travelers. Motivated by her mother’s MCS condition, she has spent half of her life trying to understand what makes an indoor space safe and healthy. Her background in Building Biology, Building Science, healthy building materials, Interior Design, and environmental toxins have led to her unique and forward looking approach in place making. She is a wife, mom and citizen Building Scientist who enjoys watching the fluctuations of her indoor air quality monitor.

Gayle Borst

Gayle Borst has been a stubborn optimist for the role of natural building materials in architecture for more than three decades. She founded the architectural design and consulting firm Stewardship Inc in 1992, where she combined her love of efficient, high-performing, human-centered building with her passion for healthy, natural, environmentally-responsible building practices. Gayle co-founded Design~Build~Live, a nonprofit organization dedicated to teaching others about healthy and natural building. Academically she has degrees in Biology, Chemistry and Energy Studies in Architecture. Through the years, she has played many roles in our Austin community, including as a LEED consultant, Austin Energy Green Building advisor, sustainable building advocate, community mentor and Earth protector.

About COTE

The Committee on the Environment (COTE) is an American Institute of Architects Knowledge Community working with architects, allied professionals, and the public to achieve climate action and climate justice through design. We believe that design excellence is the foundation of a healthy, sustainable, and equitable future. Our work promotes design strategies that allow people, communities, and our planet to thrive.

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2022 Committee Chair: Ashley Grzywa, AIA
2022 Committee Chair-Elect: Josh Leger, AIA
Past Committee Chair: Kendall Claus, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP
Staff Liaison: Rob Hoffman