Modular Building Institute

October 4, 2006
Contact: Tom Hardiman
Modular Building Institute
888-811-3288 toll-free

Michelle Kaufmann Designs Joins the Modular Building Institute
World renowned architect of green designs believes in the power of modular construction for sustainability


Charlottesville, VA – Michelle Kaufmann Designs has joined the Modular Building Institute (MBI). MBI is the international trade association for the commercial modular construction industry and promotes education and advocacy of modular construction principles. Michelle Kaufmann is founder of Michelle Kaufmann Designs and recently gave the keynote address at MBI’s Green Building Conference where she shared her vision for modular construction’s role in the sustainable design movement. Both an AIA design principal and leader in the green building community, Kaufmann is a staunch proponent of the merits of modular construction for sustainable design.

The worlds of commercial and residential modular are intersecting more often in the wake of the sustainable design movement, according to Tom Hardiman, executive director of MBI. “Kaufmann was the perfect speaker for our Green Building Conference because many of her designs have been manufactured in MBI member factories. She is well-known throughout our community.” Kaufmann’s historical interaction with MBI members demonstrates that green modular manufacturing processes can be applied to commercial, as well as, residential modular structures.

Kaufmann is a well-known leader in sustainable, residential modular design and her membership in MBI will promote a sharing of ideas about the merits of modular construction for green building—principles that can also be applied in the commercial realm. Kaufmann’s contributions as a residential green builder, and as respected leader in the architecture community, will serve to promote sustainable modular building across all types of applications.

"We are pleased that a highly successful, green design architect like Kaufmann shares MBI’s vision for the contributions of modular construction to sustainable design principles," said Tom Hardiman, executive director of the Modular Building Institute. "We want to reach out to the architecture community and let them know that modular construction can be a catapult to more sustainable design in the commercial arenas. Having Kaufmann—a recognized force in the green building movement—as an MBI member will help promote interaction between the worlds of architecture and modular construction for collaborative green building practices.”

About MBI

Founded in 1983, the Modular Building Institute is an international nonprofit trade association representing commercial modular building manufacturers and distributors with membership in over 850 locations and 15 countries including the United States, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, Peru, Poland, and the United Kingdom. Members serve seven primary markets: general office, education, retail, healthcare, government, security, and construction-site. For more information, visit


About Michelle Kaufmann

Michelle Kaufmann, 38, AIA, Founder, Design Principal, Michelle Kaufmann Designs. Kaufmann received her Masters of Architecture from Princeton University and her Bachelor of Architecture from Iowa State University. Prior to founding this San Francisco Bay Area firm, Kaufmann was an Associate for Frank O. Gehry for five years in Los Angeles. Kaufmann is a leader in the green design community, and her commitment to sustainable design remains constant with all of her work. A full-scale replica of a partial Michelle Kaufmann Designs Glidehouse™ home is currently on display at the National Building Museum’s The Green House: New Directions in Sustainable Architecture and Design exhibition through June 2007. She is a US Green Building Council member, and is currently pursuing platinum certification in the LEED® residential pilot program with one of her Sunset® Breezehouse™ homes.



About Michelle Kaufmann Designs

Michelle Kaufmann Designs( makes it easy to go green. Our thoughtful, sustainable, prefabricated dwellings combine the benefits of clean and green living with advanced modular building construction. Wired Magazine says, “Michelle Kaufmann is a leading light of the prefab movement.” We exclusively use non-toxic, renewable and high-performing systems that require less energy from the earth to build and maintain. Our factory, mkConstructs is the first of its kind in the United States and key to Michelle Kaufmann Designs “prenewable” mission: a modern blending of prefabricated systems and renewable resources. Last month, we introduced mkSolaire, an environmentally friendly prefab solution for urban living. For more information on Michelle Kaufmann Designs, please contact Barbara Franzoia: 415-291-0243;






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