📃Curriculum Vitae

circa 2023

Kurt Neiswender, AIA

Flint, Michigan 48503

EMAIL: info@urbancolab.design

WEB: www.urbancolab.design


Urban Colab Architecture, L.3.C. – Flint, MI

Founder, Owner – April 2020 - Present

  • Launched Sole Proprietor design firm to focus on community-based design solutions.

  • Primary focus on Sustainability, Resilient Design, Regenerative Design, and Adaptive Reuse.

  • Project types include affordable housing, missing middle housing, incremental development.

Sedgewick + Ferweda Architects – Flint, MI

Project Architect – July 2012 - December 2020

  • Initiated and trained staff on 2D/3D Building Information Modeling software, Autodesk Revit, to improve design accuracy, efficiency and quality of client deliverables.

  • Lead the design of all Net Zero Energy design projects that have successfully completed two single family residences and currently developing Flint's first Net Zero Energy commercial building.

  • Strategizing business development and client service experience through systems development.

MainStreet Design Build – Birmingham, MI

Director of Architecture – September 2010 – July 2012

  • Managed design staff of three to field measure, document, and design all residential and commercial projects.

  • Directly responsible for coordinating construction administration services for all project work. Prepared all permit application and planning approval presentations.

  • Communicated progress of all project work in weekly meetings.

OJMR Architects – Los Angeles, CA

Project Architect – March 2007 – September 2010

Gruen Associates – Los Angeles, CA

Project Designer – June 2006 – March 2007

Deborah Waldrip Architect – Malibu, CA

Project Designer – June 2005 – June 2006

Togawa Smith Martin Residential

Junior Designer– June 2004 – June 2005

James Schettino Architect – New Canaan, CT

Designer – December 2003 – June 2004


Lawrence Technological University – Southfield, MI

Masters of Urban Design – 2015

  • Graduated with Distinction

  • Sustainable Urbanism Concentration

Columbia University – New York, NY

NY/Paris Program - 2003

  • Attended Fall Semester in New York

University of Southern California – Los Angeles, CA

Bachelors of Architecture – 2003

  • Five-year professional degree

  • Member – Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity


American Institute of Architects

National Appointments

2019-2022 AIA National Small Firm Exchange Board of Directors

2017 AIA National Practice Innovation Lab Participant

2017 AIA / NCARB Experience Advisory Committee Co-Chair

2013-2016 Young Architect Regional Director - Michigan Region

2013-2016 AIA National Resolutions Committee (2016 Chair)

Regional Appointments

2021-2022 AIA Michigan Board of Directors

2019 AIA New Jersey Design Service Awards Jury Member

2019 AIA Michigan Strategic Planning Committee for 2020-2025 Strategic Plan

2016 AIA Michigan Recognitions Committee

2013-2016 Young Architect Regional Director - Michigan Region

Local Appointments

2020-2021 AIA Flint Component Past President

2018-2019 AIA Flint Component President

2016-2017 AIA Flint Vice President, President Elect

2012-2015 Emerging Professionals Committee Chair

National Council of Architectural Review Board NCARB

National Appointments

2016-2017 Architecture Review Exam ARE 5.0 Content Development Committee

2016 Experience Advisory Committee Co-Chair

Michigan Association of Planning

Member 2013—Present


MS Office Suite, G Suite, Adobe Suite, GIS, Autodesk Design Suite Premium, SketchUp, Space Syntax, Google Earth, Rhinoceros + Grasshopper, Energy Auditing and Analysis-BEopt, Sefaira, Energy Plus, Passive House PHIUS+.


Lawrence Technological University – Instructor F/T

College of Architecture and Design

Instructor - Full Time Faculty - 2021-Present

Adjunct Faculty - 2020-2021

Subject Area: Building Systems – Teaching in Undergraduate and Graduate Studies

ARC 3423, ARC 5413 – HVAC and Water Systems

ARC 4443, ARC 5443 - Acoustics, Lighting, and Illumination Systems

ARC 2116 - Integrated Design 1

ARC 2126 - Integrated Design 2

ARC 3126 - Integrated Design 4

ARC 4116 - Integrated Design 5

ARC 4126 - Comprehensive Design - Lab Component

University of Michigan-Flint – Adjunct Faculty

Geography, Planning, and Environment Department

Lecturer I—2013-2019

Subject Area: Sustainability and Urban Design

ESS 360, ESS 140, GEO 299, GEO 297, URP 498, URP 310, URP 212, URP 111

Art and Art History Department

Lecturer I—2014-2015

Subject Area: 2D Design, Community Engaged Design

ART 379, ART 141


Lawrence Technological University

Architecture Alumni Cabinet

2018-2020 Cabinet Member

2019 Vice Chair

2018 Secretary

City of Flint / Community Activity

2019-Present Historic District Commissioner

2019-2020 Durant Turri Mott Workgroup Member

2017-2020 Flint and Genesee Chamber Sales Lead Round Table

2015-Present University Avenue Corridor Coalition

Genesee County Historical Society

2019-2020 City of Flint Historic District Commission Liaison

City of Grand Blanc

2018-2019 Pop Up Retail Advisory Committee

Previous Service Experience

Davison Township Planning Commission

2013-2016 Commissioner

Imagine Flint Master Plan

2014-2015 Open Space, Parks & Environmental Features Implementation Task Group


2018 Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce Art of Achievement Awards

2018 Small Business Award - Winner (Sedgewick + Ferweda Architects)

2018 Young Professional of the Year - Nominee

2018 AIA Flint Design Awardee

Sustainable Design Award for Satori Passive House

2018 Building Design + Construction Magazine

2018 40 Under 40 Winner

AIA National Recognition Award

2017 Young Architect Award

2016 Green Light Flint Finalist

Business Model Competition

AIA Michigan Recognition Award

2015 Young Architect Award

AIA Flint

2013 AIA Flint Design Award Winner for 2012 Park(ing) Day Installation

Michigan Architecture Foundation

2013 D. James Walker Jr. Memorial Scholarship $3,000.00

Leadership Detroit

2012 University Partners Leadership Training—Class II

Lawrence Technological University

2011 Graduate Research Assistantship Studio [CI]


2020 UM Flint EDA Research Grant

$8,500 Grant extending research in Pop-Up retail

2020 Share Arts Flint Grant Year 2 – Greater Flint Arts Council

$2,000 Award for development of AIA Flint - Guide to Architecture

2019 Share Arts Flint Grant Year 1 – Greater Flint Arts Council

$3,200 Award for development of AIA Flint - Guide to Architecture

2018 UM Flint HFRCC Research Grant

$1,000 Consulting Architect

2018 UM Flint EDA Research Grant Phases III+IV

$20,000 Grant extending research in Pop-Up retail

2017 UM Flint EDA Research Grant Phases I+II

$20,000 Grant exploring Pop-Up retail

2016 Michigan Architectural Foundation Public Awareness Grant

$1,200 Award for Revisions to AIA Flint - Guide to Architecture

2013 AIA Flint Flat Lot Competition

$50,000 Total Grant Funded Collaborative Art/Architecture Installation


August 28, 2020—Net Zero Build Summit-Novi, MI

Panelist: Design Challenges for Residential and Multi-Family Premises Embracing Net-Zero

Building Principles

July 15, 2020—Talking Home Renovations with the House Maven

Podcast guest episode 20

June 30, 2020—Inside the Firm Podcast – Monday Morning Coffee

Podcast guest appearance with Jamie Crawley, AIA

October 24, 2019—AIA Texas Society of Architects Annual Convention

Pecha Kucha: The Art of Execution

October 17, 2019-Powers Catholic High School

Career Day

October 10, 2019—AIA Michigan Leadership Retreat

Pecha Kucha: AIA Flint Component Presentation

October 4, 2019—UM Flint EDA Center

Pop Up Retail Research Phases III+IV

September 9, 2019—Factory Two Tech Meet-Up

Presentation: Computational Design in Architecture

August 9, 2019—EntreArchitect Podcast with Mark R. LePage

EA283: The Power of Sketching with Kurt Neiswender and Jamie Crawley of Coffee Sketch Podcast

May 1, 2019—AIA Flint Guide to Architecture

“A Flint Guide To Architecture” Publish Date

2019—Present The Coffee Sketch Podcast

Co-Founder with Jamie Crawley, AIA

December 11, 2018—USA Today Online

25 Must See Buildings in Michigan—Flint Contribution

November 13, 2018—Incremental Development Alliance

Design Charrette Simulation for Incremental Housing Development

November 8, 2018—UM Flint Guest Lecture

Principles of Passive House Design

November 1, 2018—AIA Flint Guide to Architecture

Committee Chair for Updated Map Guide to Architecture

October 30, 2018—UM Flint EDA Grant Presentation Pop Up Retail Research Phases III+IV

October 16, 2018—UM Flint Science on Tap Principles of Net Zero Energy Buildings

September 30, 2018—UM Flint EDA Center “The Cookbook” a publication sponsored by the C.S. Mott Foundation

September 8, 2018—Detroit Design Festival 18th Street Community Design Charrette

October 24, 2017—Aspire: The Power of People and Place EDA Center Report on Faculty Grant Research “Pop Up Retail”

May 10, 2016—Flint Countywide SOUP “The Case for Incremental Housing in Flint”

April 27, 2016 Davison High School

Career Day Representing the Profession of Architecture

Feb. 25, 2016—Archinect Sessions Podcast

Special Guest—”Dispatch from Flint” Episode #54

Feb. 22, 2016—YAF Connection

Advocacy Article “A Great Lakes Water Problem”

Volume 14, Issue 1

Feb. 12, 2015—Michigan Association of Planning Student Conference

Wayne State University

“New Vision—Mott Park Recreation Area”

Jan. 22, 2016 Davison Middle School

Presentation—“What it Takes to Be an Architect”

Dec. 2015—YAF Connection

Article Interview with Donna Sink, AIA

Volume 13, Issue 6

Nov. 3, 2015—UM Flint ERS Department

Guest Lecture—GEO 380

University of Michigan—Flint

July 31, 2015—Arts / Tech / Biz—Mash-up

Urban coLAB Architecture, L.3.C.

Recent Work - Flint Public Interest Design

June 2, 2015—SmithGroup—Detroit

Presentation—“What is an EP?

April 2015—Structures for Inclusion Conference

Carr Center Detroit

Brennan Park Site Plan Design

February 2015—Michigan Association of Planning Student Conference

University of Michigan—Ann Arbor

“Strengthening Community Through Urban Design”

November 2014—AIA YAF Connection

“Passive House—The Obstacles in Exceeding Expectation”

January 2014—AIA Michigan Leadership Retreat

Panelist—Emerging Professionals and AIA Michigan

January 2014—AIA YAF Connection

“Passive House—The Craft of Next Generation Residential Technology”

June 2013—AIA Michigan

Architectural Review Examination Prep

Presenter on Building Systems Test Prep

May 2013—Flint Optimist Club

Guest Speaker—”Flint Flat Lot Competition”

April 2013—LTU Panel Discussion

Panelist with Mickey Jacob—AIA National President

“The Future of the Profession”

April 2011—ARCC Conference

The Carr Center, Detroit

With Studio [CI]- Ford C3 Grant Presentation

“Net Zero Community Design”


2019—Present “The Coffee Sketch Podcast” 100+ Episodes


Co-founded a weekly podcast with friend and architect Jamie Crawley, AIA, inspired by Jamie and Kurt’s shared passion for sketching, coffee and conversation. Coffee Sketch Podcast is our take on the intersection of old tech and new tech the space between the traditional practice of the hand-drawn sketch that has been performed by architects and designers for centuries and the modern day use of the #hashtag as a representation of sentiment or a movement! Each week we plan to deliver a new pod about our ideas, sketches, and what’s going in our daily lives as we pursue our love of architecture, design, and sharing this knowledge with the next generation.

2017-2018—University of Michigan EDA Center Provost Grant

$40,000.00 Grant Exploring Pop Up Retail

The intent of this project is to explore emergent trends in “pop-up” style retail and concepts in innovative business incubation. This proposal outlines the exploration through community survey and participatory design charrettes. I plan to engage with two to three community partners representing downtown, suburban, and rural environments sampled from the seven EDA counties. The fundamental goals of this project is to identify appropriate sites that have socioeconomic and environmental conditions that can sustain pop-up retail kiosks, and create opportunities for citizens to access incremental business storefronts that are not feasible with traditional “bricks and mortar” lease space.

2016—Dewey Park and Foss Avenue Neighborhood Pavilions

Design/Build with Habitat for Humanity

I provided pro-bono services partnered with the Genesee County Habitat for Humanity in a Citywide Request for Proposal for two pavilions on public land in Flint. Through the collaboration with Genesee County Habitat for Humanity, my design was chosen as the winning proposal and awarded the contract for both pavilions. The construction budget for both pavilions is $50,000.00 including design services, permits, materials and labor. Both pavilions are scheduled to be complete by June of 2016.

2014-Present—Passive House Projects

Using Advanced Framing and Energy Modeling to Improve the Built Environment

Kurt managed the design and construction of Michigan’s first two United States Passive House Institute (PHIUS) Passive Homes. Passive House is the most energy efficient construction rating for residential buildings by reducing energy consumption up to 80%-90% better than standard construction. The result is minimal dependence on fossil fuels and increased health benefits from lower emissions. Currently working on three new net zero energy projects in Michigan.

Last updated