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The design build studio is a 3-semester (Spring, Summer, Fall), undergraduate program offered through the Department of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at North Dakota State University. Design-build is an opportunity for students to see their ideas emerge from sketches and concepts to full scale completed structures. Students are encouraged to develop strengths in various areas of project development and completion such as manager, architect, fundraiser, accountant, interior designer, drafter, contractor, builder, web designer, graphics designer and many other roles required to successfully execute a project. It also gives students the opportunity to engage with professionals and real-life clients in the professional world as they move forward in their future as designers.

The current project, designed as a 4-person cabin, will be constructed and temporarily exhibited at the Eco-Experience, Minnesota State Fair 2011 where it will educate 300,000+ people about achieving very high levels of resource and energy efficiency on a mid-market budget. After the Fair, the structure will either be moved to a permanent location or dismantled and repurposed for other uses.

Our goal is to research, analyze, design, and build a beautiful, low-energy structure that meets the Passive House performance criteria, on a mid-market construction budget. This design also takes into consideration carbon implications and resource use analysis, as a step towards achieving a sustainable, efficient, an affordable goal.