About us

Design Constructs was founded by Douglas McKean in 1992 to transform the way buildings are thought of as assets and is committed to their sustainability - to make buildings carbon neutral, far exceeding current building standards and even LEED (TM) Platinum requirements!  Our mantra is - in the words of the Great Law of the Iroquois Confederacy - “In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisionmaking on the next seven generations.”  To us, sustainability is not a ‘buzz word’, it is a paradigm shift. 

Even if all new buildings were built to LEED (TM) Platinum standards the problems of our inefficient existing building stock would persist – minimizing the impact of those new building initiatives – so without dealing with our existing buildings in combination with new construction we are merely ‘rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic’.  

Based on fuel costs alone, the life cycle cost of the average building over its lifetime is over four times the original construction cost. Many grants, rebates and incentives exist which Design Constructs can help you navigate to ‘avoid the icebergs’!  There are many energy strategies for making buildings carbon neutral – solar / photovoltaic, wind, geothermal, biomass, and vegetative solutions are the most widely uses - but first the building must be made to be as energy efficient as it can to minimize the costs of the strategies to be utilized on a first cost and life-cycle cost basis.  Design Constructs utilizes an "Integrative Design Process" to yield the maximum benefit from the entire design / development team.  

We assist property owners in the successful completion of building projects based on proper project formulation – developing the right scope and the proper budget, and then design the project based on that solid foundation.  Successful projects by Design Constructs such as those for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – the federal organization that is one of the global authorities on climate change – have proven that sustainable projects can be completed on time and on budget.  

Whatever the building’s use – retail, residential, housing, office, laboratory, parkland, parking garage or transportation hub - Design Constructs can demonstrate the environmental benefit and long term savings opportunities for any type of building which uses fossil fuels and typical grid electricity. Determining which sustainability strategies would maximize your return on investment is what Design Constructs specializes in with regard to your existing buildings and new construction alike.

So instead of ‘rearranging deck chairs’ let Design Constructs demonstrate how your buildings can become a model of sustainability – and let others be ‘green with envy’ at your transformation into an environmental leader.



•     Sustainability

       -   Emerging Technologies Research / Implementation

       -   Energy Modeling

       -   Grant / Utility Rebate Submissions

       -   LEED Process Management

       -   Life Cycle Cost Analysis

       -   Net-zero Energy Strategies

       -   Sustainability Audits

•     Preservation

       -   Facilities Condition Assessments

       -   Restoration

       -   Historic Interiors

•     Master Planning / Architectural Design

       -   Visioning Studies / Master Plans

       -   Site Planning

       -   Feasibility Studies

       -   New Construction

       -   Adaptive Reuse Strategies / Renovation

•     Value Management / Value Engineering

       -   Pre-Construction CM Services

       -   Project Formulation / Project Scope + Budget Development

•     Expert Witness Testimony

       -   Constructability Issues / Reviews

       -   Standard of Care Issues / Reviews



•   Community Facilities

•   Educational - Charter Schools, Colleges & Universities

•   Large, Mixed Use Development

•   Open Space / Parkland

•   Residential

•   Restaurant

•   Retail

•   Transit Facilities

•   Transit Oriented Development


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Contact us: DMcKean@DesignConstructs.com                                      646-879-2429

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