AIA selects the Boston-based MASS Design Group to receive the 2021 Collaborative Achievement Award


WASHINGTON – The American Institute of Architects (AIA) recognizes the Boston-based MASS Design Group with the 2021 Collaborative Achievement Award.

The Collaborative Achievement Award recognizes and promotes collaboration between design professionals, clients, organizations, knowledge communities and others who have positively influenced or promoted the architectural profession.

The Boston-based MASS Design Group is an interdisciplinary collective of 120 architects, landscape architects, engineers, furniture designers, writers and filmmakers. MASS is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization that is strongly committed to fair, community-centric design and ensuring that architecture addresses the world’s social problems. Since its inception, MASS has donated more than $ 8 million in design services and unlocked more than $ 80 million in capital project investments through astute philanthropic outreach.

With its mission embedded in its name – MASS is an acronym for Model of Architecture Serving Society – the company was founded on the idea that buildings have the power to heal. The company’s early work explored how architecture can improve health and wellbeing, and projects in Rwanda and Haiti delivered worthy buildings that bolster the healing services of its partners in those countries. The practices learned in these early projects provided the framework that enables MASS to inform policy development, emerging research and projects addressing inequality. With 30 projects built or under construction worldwide, including the lauded National Monument for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Alabama, each new effort is marked by MASS ‘commitment to explore the deep connections between human and environmental health.

Since its inception, MASS has been deeply involved in infectious diseases that have proven invaluable during the global COVID-19 pandemic. When social distancing measures were in place across most of the country last March, MASS quickly turned to compiling best practices for spatial strategies that slow contagion and assisted Boston Health Care for the homeless program in designing facilities for the temporary Treatment in the city. The combination of design, medical, nonprofit, and government forces enabled the program to begin treating patients within a week of initial planning.

As an innovative leader who has served more than 500,000 people through its work, MASS has unlocked the ability of architecture to serve the common good and build a more just and just society. MASS ‘willingness to collaborate leads to critical infrastructures and buildings that focus on the dignity and wellbeing of those they serve.