Deborah Moelis, AIA


Deborah Moelis AIA is a Principal and a founding member of Handel Architects. She has lectured extensively on the principles of Passive House design, including presentations at North American Passive House Network, AIANY, Greenbuild DC, nZeb in Wexford, Ireland and the International Passivhaus Institute conference in Vienna, Austria.

Ms. Moelis served as Principal in Charge for Cornell Tech’s new residential tower, The House, in New York City. The tower was the largest building in the world built to Passive House standards when it completed in 2017, and was awarded LEED for Homes Building of the Year in 2018. Current work includes serving as Principal in Charge for Sendero Verde, a new 709-unit residential building in New York City, which, when complete, will be the largest fully affordable Passive House building in the world. She has also been instrumental in the design of a new Passive House dormitory for the University of Toronto Scarborough, which will be the largest Passive House dormitory in the world when complete. She is also managing the design and construction of the Grand Street Residences, a 100% affordable development designed for Grand Street Guild on the Lower East Side.

Previously Ms. Moelis managed the design and construction of Aire, a 42-story 315-unit residential tower on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, as well as Millennium Place, a 256-unit residential building in downtown Boston. She has also led numerous teams through successful entitlement processes in NY City as well as Jersey City and Boston, MA. Ms. Moelis' projects have been extensively published and received numerous awards, including honors from AIANY, ULI, USGBC, and the Chicago Athenaeum.

Prior to joining Handel Architects, Ms. Moelis received her Masters of architecture degree from Columbia University and Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees from the University of Michigan. She is a licensed Architect in New York and California and received her Certified Passive House Designer credentials in 2016.

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