Framing her approach to design interventions, Melissa finds comfort in the constraints of urban sites. She uses both physical and social context as well as programmatic elements to inform conversations about functionality, beauty, and sustainability. Her success is rooted in the pre concept phase where she encourages a broad yet refined understanding of the building’s program and users to inform the base building blocks. Opting to carve rather than model, she creates memorable but contextual architecture by maxing out the site and subtracting to fabricate the overall massing within the larger urban fabric.
Following her graduation from The College of Holy Cross, Melissa was accepted as a Fulbright Scholar to teach English in an idyllic Austrian town outside Salzburg. Traveling Europe during school breaks motivated her to pursue architecture and prompted a return to the states to pursue a masters at Boston Architectural College. She completed her Master’s Degree in Architecture at Pratt Institute and started working at Perkins Eastman building a portfolio of primary and secondary education projects for institutes of learning. Before joining WRNS Studio, she worked at KSQ Design also on K-12 projects. A new mother, she is raising her young daughter as a third-generation resident of Queens and grows two types of hops for use as a home brewer.