Meet The Architect

Meet Christian Kienapfel.

While Marco was researching passive houses, trying to familiarize himself with the types of windows, doors, equipment, and numerous other details, he came across PARAVANT Architects.

As he was reading about the architects of the firm, he was soon impressed after reading Christian Kienapfel’s resume, featuring his 20 year experience of projects worldwide.  Christian seemed like the type of architect who thinks outside the box, which is what we wanted, since we were looking to build a one of a kind house that was custom to our needs. 

Here is a little about Christian’s background: he received his Master of Architecture degree from the University of Applied Sciences in Cottbus. Born and raised in Germany, he came to the U.S. as a Fulbright Scholar and earned a Master Degree in Architecture from Virginia Tech. He is a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), LEED AP and a licensed architect in Germany and in California. His work includes commercial buildings, theaters, high-rise construction, religious & community projects as well single and multi-family residential buildings. He has taught architecture, hospitality/interior design studios and been invited asa guest lecturer at various international conferences.

Being a Certified Passive House Designer (CPHD) and serving as a board member of Passive House California (PHCA), Christian really caught our attention; and the best part was that he had already built a Passive House in LA (PHLA+), one of the first new Passive House constructions in Southern California.

When Marco contacted him, he was hosting an open house of PHLA and invited us to attend.  When Marco met with him, they had a great synergy, and after talking in detail, it became obvious that Christian was the perfect match, both as an architect and as a person, to work and collaborate on our passive house project.

After a few months into the project, we are extremely pleased with our decision. From a technical perspective, Christian is exceptionally knowledgable, extending in areas that even Marco was surprised to find in an architect (Marco, being an aerospace engineer, is very hard to please technically!). From an architectural perspective, with the recent completion of the conceptual design, Christian has not only fulfilled all of our requirements  (they were quite numerous!), but he greatly exceeded our expectations. During the various meetings and conversations we had during the planning and conceptual design phase, he took notes of everything, and we literally mean everything, that we proposed, responded, suggested, and he always surprised us on the following meeting by showing the results of his research, rich of ideas, concepts, inspirational and practical solutions, incorporating them into the next proposed revised plans.  

As we are a few months into the project, reaching the completion of the conceptual design, we are thrilled and delighted that PARAVANT Architects won the 2019 AIA Merit Cote Award under the typology of single-family residential for their design of the PHLA+ Passive House.


Leave a Reply