Seeking Peace at the Grafton Peace Pagoda

Seeking Peace

This was my view from the top of the Grafton Peace Pagoda. My family and I were humbled to spend a week there recently, helping to maintain both the temple and ourselves.

I’m fortunate to call Jun Yasuda a friend and mentor. She is the keeper of the Peace Pagoda and a Japanese Buddhist Nun from the Nipponzan Myohoji order. This sect of Buddhism is rooted in action. It’s focused on being part of the world, being of service, and striving for peace.

Being out at the Pagoda taught me a lot about prayer. Growing up Catholic, I prayed, but never had a breakthrough moment like I did there. Maybe it was all the scraping, painting and mortar mixing (lol!). But in all seriousness, there is something to be said for prayer in action. Every nail hammered is a meditation. Every crack patched. Every stone replaced, an offering.

I typically see spirit in building design—from the mundane to the intentionally sacred. I recognize there is spirit in everything, but it’s good to be reminded sometimes. The shape of the pagoda is soothing, a balm to my architectural soul.

Grafton Peace Pagoda with gray clouds in the background

Grafton Peace Pagoda

Peace Pagodas are a symbol of non-violence dating as far back as 2000 years ago. According to the Lotus Sūtra, the appearance of a Peace Pagoda is the very embodiment of the Buddha, radiating a message of nonviolence and purifying the land as well as the hearts and minds of people.

Jun Yasuda, a Japanese Buddhist Nun from the Nipponzan Myohoji order, is the keeper of the Grafton Pagoda. She has crossed the country on peace walks at least five times on foot. She walks beating her drum while chanting a prayer for peace Na-Mu-Myo-Ho-Ren-Ge-Kyo.

Many people ask the question, “what is inside the Peace Pagoda?” The answer is, “nothing but empty space.” Since the first Pagodas were built by the piling of stones on mud, their interiors were solid with no space inside. Although the modern construction techniques used to build the Grafton Peace Pagoda have created an interior space, this area is purposely left unused. The space outside the pagoda is for gathering together and reminding people to stay connected to the outside world.

If you find yourself in Update NY, take a little time out to visit the Pagoda yourself. See their website for details.

Sense of Place, Recent Travel Abroad

Our family just returned from a trip to Madrid and Paris. This trip was awesome!  We were enticed by the scale and warmth of inviting, walk-able cities.


We were joyful for the playgrounds we explored and were enlightened by the simplicity of daily market life intertwined with world-class art exhibits and music. Upon returning, Rowe (our 13 yr-old) had an immediate reaction to our home, NYC: “It’s so…gray!”


City of Light – There’s a Reason

Observation noted. Why does Paris seem so colorful? Is it because people are different there? The climate? How come our home, one of the greatest cities in the world, appears drab in comparison to Paris? Culture may have some influence. But I KNOW design matters:

  • Lower buildings: Paris strictly protects the current height limits of buildings. This means the city feels more “human” than NYC’s towers. Also, sunlight makes its way down into the city streets, markets, shops, cafes and bakeries so people are more infused with warmth and daylight.
  • Narrower streets: Many Parisian streets are designed for people not cars: stone pavers, narrow passages, bollards to slow or block traffic. People feel more comfortable and have a sense of belonging in these human spaces.
  • Color: the Parisian palette has soft earth tones, and their sensibilities flaunt bright colors with expressions of “look at me!” or, “There are so many reasons to be happy today!”

Design Informs our Senses

Different city designs inform our perception of that city and the type of energy we feel. Paris is the home of fashion, color, love and whimsy. NYC is fast paced, and business oriented, with the gray exteriors rising up out of the pavement like crisp, tailored suites… Perhaps that’s a reason Paris really appealed to our kids. It tapped into their sense of play and felt more accessible.

Traveling to foreign countries is a great way to gain new perspective on home, and what home means for us. Paris may be more colorful on the outside, but NYC has it where it counts – in its heart.

Onward, Eric

Danish Architecture: Hygge and Northern Exposure

Almost 20 years ago, I had the pleasure of studying architecture in Copenhagen, Denmark. Some of the lessons learned there have stuck with me to this day, and I am particularly reminded of them on these cold, wintry days. 


Danes Know How to Hygge

Copenhagen Denmark. A couple of things that really stick out in my memory are 1) the perpetual rain, cold, and dank terrible weather and 2) the relief of retreating to a warm, cozy inside. Now the relief of shedding wet boots, coat, hat, and gloves inside a warm building is something that most of us in the North East can related to. However, I’m talking about something more. Much more. I’m talking about good food, great drinks, and happy friends, all bundled into a cozy atmosphere. I’m talking about my experience with Hygge.

Danish design influence


So, what is

Hygge? Well, it’s a Danish word that has no direct translation in English. It’s been described as “the art of creating intimacy” and “coziness of the soul”. I’m here to say that it’s not just the latest Instagram hashtag. It’s for real. Here’s how I experienced the architecture in Copenhagen: exteriors are pretty simple, clean lines, maybe a splash of color here or there, but fairly unremarkable. It’s the interiors that the Danes pour all their efforts into: selecting furniture, carefully lighting each room, adding pillows, blankets, tables and candles to create a sense of comfort and ease. For lighting, diffuse is the name of the game. Harsh, high contrast light will have everyone squinting in confusion (or more likely annoyance). Much like a southern exposure. Wait, what?


Unlearning Sunlight Lessons

In the US we’re taught to position windows for southern exposure to maximize sunlight. But that’s not what the Danes-who-live-in-perpetual-darkness-most-of-the-year do. They prefer a northern exposure. Here’s why:

Southern exposure lets a lot of light in, but it’s more direct, meaning very high contrast. You end up squinting in your kitchen from the bright light reflecting off your counter-tops, while the sink area is bathed in shadow. On the other hand, windows with a northern exposure cast even lighting over the entire room, especially when the windows are floor to ceiling or placed high up on the wall.

northern exposure with floor to ceiling windows


Danish Design Influence

The biggest lesson I took away from Copenhagen and integrated into my design practice is this: exteriors are easy, interiors matter most. Interiors are where people are. At LEAP we spend the majority of our design time on interior spaces, really thinking about the use and feel. When it comes down to it, we humans spend 90% of our time inside, even if the weather here is better than Denmark. So, raise a cup of hot cocoa and light a candle. I hope your day is a little more Hyggelig as we finish out February.


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Celebrating the Small Wins in 2018

Eric Davenport, Founder of LEAP, takes a moment to reflect on some of the small wins, personal and in business from 2018.

Personal Wins

Eric lifting sequence for clean

Happy New Year! Taking stock of the past year, I’d like to share one of my small 2018 wins: I PR’d my clean!

What does that mean? It’s a weight lifting thing. And no. If you’ve met me in person, I don’t strike you as an avid gym-goer, and certainly not a weight lifter. I’ll never look like Dwayne Johnson (please send help if I do!), but I show up and do my personal best. Which brings me to the gym lingo:“PR” = Personal Record and “Clean” = lift barbell from the floor to the shoulders, and stand. While my clean PR isn’t going to qualify me for any lifting competitions, this milestone is significant in its own right and relates to things we all work for in our lives.

I couldn’t lift this last year, or even last month. I certainly couldn’t when I didn’t go to the gym. I had to build up strength over time, incrementally adding weight, gaining flexibility, and confidence to get that heavy barbell up on my shoulders and ultimately above my head! I’ve learned that big improvements, whether with weights or business, relationships, or design capabilities, require consistent small efforts to achieve success.

Business Wins

LEAP Architecture is growing. We started with small additions and renovations. Through consistent efforts, we’ve grown our abilities to design and manage sophisticated projects for large organizations and companies. Our next big effort is to extend Passive House design practices to a majority of our projects. A Passive House (or NET-Zero) Certified building is defined as producing as much energy as it consumes in 1 year. My Passive House Certification was a bigger effort than I bargained for. The tests were harder than my architecture registration exams, but well worth it.

One of LEAP’s bigger wins in 2018 was designing the first and only NET-Zero Greenhouses in NYS for Capital Roots’ Urban Grow Center.

Capital Roots NET-Zero Greenhouse rendering Troy NY

We look forward to helping companies be on the cutting edge in sustainable design for 2019 and beyond. We’ll celebrate wins, big and small, that help LEAP Architecture fulfill our mission of social, environmental and economic betterment for all.


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Albany Architects Keep Seeds Safe in Haiti

 How to prevent spoilage? Our minds usually jump to refrigeration, but what if electricity is not available or reliable? Albany architects use their green building expertise to solve this conundrum and help Haitians preserve seeds for high-yield crops.


Be Cool, Seeds

Haiti can be pretty hot and humid. While this might sound appealing for island life, it’s not ideal for storing seeds—and most important are those seeds. The seed we are referring to are peanut and rice. This seed storage project is part of a larger effort to develop more high-yield, high-protein crops for Haitians and to help reduce their reliance on international aid. This work is made possible by the  iF Foundation.

David Doherty, friend and mentor, currently works with the iF Foundation to experimentally raise high-yield and high-protein crops. The seeds and seedlings are distributed to local farmers along with education and tools that perpetuate local, sustainable agriculture.

So, if you were literally banking next years meals, you’d want that bank to be designed right. So what’s a green architect to do? Start with site analysis of course! Identify features that we can work with, such as gravity, sun, shading, plants, air pressure. Sounds simplistic? Well, that’s where the elegance of the solution shines. When you have little to work with, it really brings out the creativity in people and the project.

Day 2. Team reviews the new plan of action.


Green Building Design

The main goal here was to keep the rice and peanut seed, which are stored in metal shipping containers, cool and prevent spoilage. The key design approach was to create shade and air movement. The shade was accomplished by designing an open-sided steel structure with a pavilion-style, tiered roof. The open, yet overlapping tiers allowed air hot air to escape. Planted walls will help further cool the surroundings and increase the temperature differential from the ground below to the hot roof above (temperature and pressure differential), further generating air flow.

Albany architect in Haiti oversees construction of seed storage pavilion

Day 3. A section of welded 2 x 4 for the frame has been painted and is being inspected.


Albany Architects go Back to the Drawing Board

If you scroll down to the bottom, you’ll see we successfully build the see storage pavilion! But before that point, our engineering and design mettle was tested. We hit several of the proverbial “bumps in the road”, which were more akin to the sinkhole on North Lake Ave. in Albany, earlier this year. Without giving you the blow-by-blow, let’s say that 6 months of design preparation had to be thrown out when we arrived in Haiti.

Here are a couple of the big bumps:

  1. Bolts no more. The promised “metal shop” only had 2-hand held power drills to make holes for the 3600 bolted connections, which would have required 750 hours (or 31 days of 24/7 drilling). Did I mention the bits became dull after 48 holes, then unusable, and both of the drills burnt out? So no bolted connections. –>Okay, welding it is.
  2. Right size steel? No. The design called for 4×4 steel tubes, ¼” thick. However, only 2×4 tubes were delivered, which were only 1/16” thick. –> We decided to weld together 2×4 tubes in order to fabricate 4×4 tubes. Extra welded supports were also required.

After we scrapped the entire design, half the team broke away to work on re-design while the other half continued preparation work on the ground. What was important in this project is that no one on the team gave up. After a few groans, everyone faced the new reality and got busy meeting the new challenge. We only had 1 week onsite to finish this project, and I am so proud of what our team (from the US and Haiti) was able to accomplish!


Albany architects designed seed storage pavilion in Haiti- shown under construction

Day 6. The pavilion starts to take shape.


The Lean and Green Team

LEAP Architecture certainly didn’t do this project alone. Our brilliant team made this project possible, overcoming obstacles large and small, with humor, grace and limited resources. A huge thanks to the iF Foundation for providing the funding.

Our Extraordinary Project team:

iF Foundation (Funders of the agricultural campus and programs)
David Doherty, Vice Chairman
Edlyne Cange, Country Director
Architecture by Eric Davenport, Founder LEAP Architecture
Engineering: by ENGinE, Widener University Students:
Cameron Connors, Nichole Dantoni, Alfred Hew, Hannah Landvater, Tori Remondelli,
Soils Engineer and Hands on Deck: Zamir Libohova
Construction Site Super: Magnus Regis, iF Foundation

LEAP designed a seed storage pavilion that required no moving parts

Day 7. The pavilion structure is complete. The plantings for additional shade around the perimeter are not in yet (as of the taking of this picture).

This project was completed in February 2016. To read about LEAP’s Albany Architects & their adventures, see out new effort for designing a school in Haiti. Click here.

Albany Architect’s Philanthropic Work in Haiti

LEAP Architecture was founded in part for Eric Davenport’s Philanthropic efforts in Haiti dating back to 2003. This Albany Architect has continued to stay involved over the years, and last week he traveled back to Haiti to survey the latest project; the design and cost of a new school.


Albany Architect Goes Back to School

Eric Davenport (LEAP Architecture’s Founder, Albany, NY) returned earlier this week from a 3-day, world-wind trip to Haiti. The mission? Assess, discuss and come up with a design to replace the existing school (shown below). The current school isn’t much more than “sticks and metal”. The shed that you keep your lawnmower in probably has better construction and security. Beyond the structural shortcomings, one of the main issues is that the school floods every time it rains. Another big issue is accommodation. The school isn’t big enough for all the students.

The new school needs to be larger, flood-proof, and also address food service, sanitation and security. So what’s a green architect to do?



Albany Architect's latest project is designing a new school in Haiti, current school facility is made of large sticks.


The Real Green Architecture

One of the biggest challenges of designing structures in Haiti are the number of constraints. There are limited resources, both in the actual construction of the building and also when it goes into “operation”. Electricity is intermittent and usually provided by a generator. Power tools ran out of battery? Well, let’s see if we can charge them or if we have to wait.

Most building materials need to be imported and there isn’t a Home Depot around the corner. If you’ve done any home renovation projects, you make at least 3 trips (in the same day) back to the box-store because you bought the wrong size screws or didn’t get enough 2 x 4s. In Haiti, that’s not an option.

Here in the US, we enjoy pretty darn reliable electricity, indoor plumbing, and clean water—all of which we probably take for granted. Most of the buildings LEAP Architecture is designing do not have the “luxury” of electricity, which puts our green building design brains into overdrive and where it gets really interesting.

How do you  make a school comfortable and provide enough light for students and teachers when there is no electricity?

Use what you do have, gravity, sun, shading, and air currents, a.k.a. do a site analysis. For site analysis LEAP maps sun paths, wind patterns, vegetation, and topography. We do this for all of our designs (so if you need an Albany Architect)…but in Haiti it’s especially important because that’s really all we have to work with.

Next post we will delve into some of the design specifics for the green school, such as how we ensure ample natural lighting and ventilation. In the meantime, if you are interested in green architecture, read up on our series of posts for Passive House Design.





LEAP Stands with Standing Rock

LEAP Architecture stands with our Water Protectors at Standing Rock in North Dakota. We have committed to design efficient, yet inexpensive, winter-worthy housing structures. Please consider making a contribution to purchase building materials for this effort.

Donate to the Winter Shelters Here.


Standing Rock Sioux Nation

Standing Rock Sioux Nation is protesting the construction of a controversial oil pipeline that would cut across the American heartland. The Dakota Access Pipeline construction route crosses land that is sacred to the Sioux Nation. If that wasn’t enough, there are fears that a potential oil spill would contaminate water locally, as well as in greater North Dakota area. The tribe wants the federal government to stop work on the pipeline and conduct a full environmental impact study of the pipeline.

Protesters have been present near Cannon Ball, N.D. since April 2016, and continue to be vigilant in their cause. And as House of Stark knows, winter is coming. Which means that the tents many people have been camping out in aren’t sufficient to stand up to the harsh Dakota winter. Warmer, more structurally sound shelters are needed, and needed quickly.

Standing Rock Protesters, Protecting everyone's water rights

Protecting our Water Protectors

LEAP founder, Eric Davenport, was fortunate enough to link up with a plan for providing such structures. Bill Record (tribal name Medicine Bear) has already started an effort to raise funds in order to build shelters for protesters.  The two key needs are community space and sleeping space. The structures must withstand cold and high winds and be movable. The structures can be heated by RV camper style propane furnaces.

“Safety, ventilation, thermal protection, and security are some of the most critical design aspects”, Eric Davenport.

The design needs to be finalized very quickly, and a prototype built locally in NYS. The structures will consist of readily available materials (plywood, rigid insulation), and be constructed from panels that can be easily screwed together for assembly, or disassembled and moved if necessary. This will make it feasible to source materials locally in North Dakota, and fabricate them according to the  final LEAP design.

trailer bed to transport winter shelter prototype from New York to North Dakota

Trailer bed which will be used to transport the prototype shelter, along with some assembled panels from New York to North Dakota.

Help Build Winter Shelters

Donate to the Winter Shelters Here.

You can help fund the building of these winter shelters. A GoFundMe campaign has been set-up to raise $12,000 for building materials. Volunteers will provide the labor for fabricating the panels and assembling structures.

We are reaching out to our network to help in whatever way you can. At LEAP, we believe in doing what we can, everyday. We know that our small effort in sustainable building practices won’t cure global warming, but combined with other people and projects working toward the same goal, the efforts start to coalesce, and start to make a real difference.

Standing Rock is an example of a small effort coalescing into something larger. Something that is making America great again, or at the very least, providing us a glimpse of what we could be. Along with nearly 200 Native American tribes, celebrities, environmentalists, politicians, leaders of the Black Lives Matter movement and other activists have joined together to create one of the more unusual coalitions to back a cause.

With our many thanks and sincere gratitude,

The LEAP Team

Standing Rock Winter Shelter inspiration sketch


Architects Creative Every Day Features LEAP

LEAP Founder—Eric Davenport—relates what the life of an Albany Architect is like, in this 6 strip comic by local artist Ira Marks. 


architects creative every day

Architects Creative Every Day

Creative Every Day – Tales of Art and Life Colliding – is a collection of stories from local creatives around the Capital District of New York. It was conceived, collected, drawn and collated by local cartoonist, Ira Marks. This book, available in print or as an electronic PDF, is meant as a resource for kids, parents and teachers who wants to know what it’s like to work in a creative industry. The entire collection can be found at LEAP Architecture is proud to be included among the many talented folks who shared their creative stories!

Life of an Architect

Q: What got you interested in solar powered cars in high school?

Eric: I was fortunate that in my high school, we were able to chose specialty tracks, and I choose engineering and design. My teacher had us look at designing solar cars, as there were so many aspects to consider. They needed to be lightweight, yet have enough solar panels to produce sufficient energy. They needed to carry a person in relative comfort, move forward, be aerodynamic, and also have enough surface area to orient the solar panels in the proper direction to capture sunlight. The exercise helped open my mind to all of the design demands a project could have, and think about how best to balance competing needs.

Q: Do you think people generally think of architecture as a creative career?

Eric: Yes and no. Some people are under the impression that architecture is strictly engineering—math, math, math—and crazy number crunching. Others have the impression that I sit around and draw artistic pictures of buildings all day. It’s really much more a holistic approach, managing projects and managing people. I would say the biggest skill I apply everyday is creative common sense.

Q: What do you hope people will take away from this cartoon?

Eric: Don’t be afraid of hard work. When you find something you are passionate about, you don’t mind spending the long hours to make it successful. When I was an intern in NYC, my mentor tried to convince me (& all the other interns) NOT to become an architect. Despite his warning of hard work, long hours, and little glory, I knew that being an architect is what I wanted to do then and I’m still passionate about it today.

Q: What reaction did your own kids have, seeing you in a cartoon?

Eric: Well, compared to some of the other stories, my oldest daughter thought mine was boring. She would have like to see me jumping off a building, or imbued with a superpower. So, let me reiterate,there is little glory being an architect. My daughter is a super-creative young actress, dancer, and designer of clothes. I think building design is not in her future, but my hope is this comic strikes a chord with a young version of me, dreaming of the day their designs become real structures.

Want to get to know Eric even better? Check out our post Meet the Architect.

Do you work in a field that allows you to be creative? We’d love to hear what it is. Leave a comment below and tell us what you do!

Architects – AIA’s List of Critical Questions to Ask

LEAP Architecture is a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). Here we share AIA’s list of questions to help you decide if an architect is the right fit for you and your project.

Questions, Questions, Questions

Every architecture firm brings its own combination of skills, expertise, interests, and values to its projects. The challenge is to find the one that aligns most closely with your project’s needs. Selection is a mutual process.

The most thoughtful architects are as careful in selecting their clients as owners are in selecting architects. Be prepared to answer questions about your project’s purpose, budget, time frame, site, and the team of players you anticipate being involved with the project.

Below are some questions, broken up by topic, to address when meeting with a prospective architect.

Architects Experience

• What is your design philosophy?

• What sets your firm apart from other architects with similar experience?

• Do you have experience with the building type and size of my project?

• Will you share with me a portfolio of similar projects and provide a list of client references?

• Who from the architecture firm will I be dealing with on a regular basis? Is this the person who will design my project?

Take a look at LEAP’s Portfolio for Residential and Commercial Projects. 

My Project

• What challenges do you foresee for my project?

• What do you see as the important issues or considerations in my project?

• What is your estimated timetable for my project?

• What means will you use to collect information about my needs, goals, etc.?

• How will you help me to fully understand the scope and sequence of the project? Will you utilize models, drawings, or computer animation?


• What are the steps in the design process, and how are they organized?

• What criteria will be used to establish priorities and make design decisions?

• What do you expect me to provide?

• How disruptive will construction be?

• What role do you have during construction? Am I expected to work with the contractor directly?

Here’s a pretty thorough walk-through of LEAP’s design process.

Green Design

• Do you have experience with “green” or sustainable design?

• Do you regularly integrate low or no cost sustainable design strategies into projects?

• Considering the many areas that may be affected by sustainable design, how will you determine which options to pursue?

• If sustainable design technologies are implemented, do upfront costs exist that may affect the construction budget? What are the expected pay back times?

Read how LEAP approaches Green Design.

Architects Fees

• How do you establish fees?

• In anticipation of a formal proposal with costs, what would you expect your fee to be for this project?

• What is included in your basic services and what services would incur additional fees?

• If the scope of the project changes later in the project, will there be additional fees? How will these fees be justified? How will this be communicated to me?

• What is your track record with completing a project within the original budget?

Here’s one of LEAP’s posts that covers the benefits of working with an architect and our general fee structure.

LEAP welcomes your questions. We strive to make sure that your project is a good fit with our expertise. The AIA also offers a nice PDF guide, You and Your Architect.  Download it here, and start asking away! Give us a call 518-669-9435, and speak to Eric. And lastly, check out our client reviews and testimonials.

Meet the Architect, Eric Davenport

Get to Know LEAP Founder and Architect, Eric Davenport in our next series of posts!

5 Questions with Eric



What was your first job?

My first job was working at Stewarts in Clifton Park, NY, where I grew up. One of my duties was scraping out the bottom of the chili pot—an experience that turned me on to vegetarianism, lol!


What led you to become an architect?

I think I’ve always been drawn to architecture, even as a little kid. The process of designing something that people will live and work in, it seems commonplace, but when you really think about it, it’s a really big deal. Architecture influences all of us, everyday, whether or not we consciously recognize it. One of my favorite quotes:

“Architecture is basically a container of something. I hope they will enjoy not so much the teacup, but the tea.” –Yoshio Taniguchi


How does your family influence your design approach?


LEAP Architect, Eric Davenport with his 3 kids.

My wife Claire and I have 3 children, ages 4, 12, and 19. So I understand that family  life is sometimes chaotic. The flow of the house should bring a family together, be a backdrop for, yet also enhance daily activities. The materials used is another big consideration. These should be aesthetically pleasing, but also durable and easy to maintain. A good design meets the needs of both growing children and the parents. Many families need “together” spaces and “away” spaces to help balance the family dynamics. We also explore specific growth plans for families, and also businesses to help improve their bottom lines.


Have you traveled? How has that shaped you?

Travel has had a profound influence on my life and work. I worked through my undergraduate degree at Ball State University in Indiana. My last semester was spent in Copenhagen, Denmark. I really connected to the Scandinavian aesthetic—clean lines, lots of light, and it always feels fresh. The weather in Denmark is not so great, so little effort is spent on simple exteriors. However, the interiors are other-worldy: warm, cozy, vibrant spaces for living, working and playing are key to the Dane’s happy lifestyles.

I also traveled and studied in Sri Lanka, India and Nepal, which helped inform our practice with historical context. It’s one thing to look at these ancient structures in a text book. When experiencing them in person, I learned how historic structures can be used in contemporary ways, and contribute to sustainable design strategies.

After coming back to the states, I knew that I needed to incorporate green and sustainable building practices into my designs. I complemented my environmental architecture education by attending ECOSA, the sustainable design institute in Prescott, AZ.

Spending time out in the desert was wild. It helped me appreciate the specificity of regional climates and their impact on architectural design. I studied under the guidance of Tony Brown, who was an apprentice of Paolo Soleri. Soleri, for those of you that don’t know, founded the Arcosanti, an urban laboratory focused on innovative design, community, and environmental accountability in the high desert of Arizona.

For the last 10 years I’ve been living and working in New York’s Capital District, which is also where I grew up. Living here, it feels a little like completing a circuit.

Architect, Eric Davenport nepal

Portrait of the Architect as a Young Man in Nepal. LEAP Founder and Architect, Eric Davenport in his formative years.

Do you have a passion project?

Haiti is a big one. I started volunteering in Haiti in 2003. The initial focus was on education and how to affordably create schools as a space for teaching with cultural arts. My involvement grew from there. I really fell in love with the country and the people. I’m proud to say that LEAP has worked not only on schools, but emergency relief community designs, sustainable agricultural pro
cessing plants, community centers, computer centers, and food security programs. I’m working on a longer story about my Haiti experiences, so stay tuned for that in the coming weeks.


LEAP Founder and Architect, Eric Davenport overseeing construction of a seed storage facility in Haiti.



[box type=”bio”] LEAP Architect, Eric Davenport excels in understanding complex needs of businesses and families. LEAP’s goal is to provide affordable solutions to companies and residential clients. He has extensive experience in single family and multi-family residential projects and also specializes in interior design.

Contact LEAP and let us put our experience to work for you![/box]