P.R.O. is an interdisciplinary design studio founded in 2011 by Miriam Peterson and Nathan Rich specializing in cultural and residential projects as well as urban design proposals.
We do many things in our practice. Each project, whether commissioned, self-initiated, or research-based, represents a unique opportunity to do something different. We favor precision over abstraction, users and context over the diagram. The work itself is not dictated by a singular style, material palette, or abstract expression. It engages place, is resistant to trend and style, and attempts to be communicable and accessible — it is specific.
We graduated and entered into the profession during the financial crisis. Witnessing firsthand the way in which the collapse of the markets directly impacted architects, we cannot view the discipline as strictly autonomous. Architectural practice is complex and architects are but one part of an intricate system of actors working towards a common goal. We embrace collaboration both within the studio and outside of it so that we can be smarter about design.
Building and real projects are at the core of our practice — this is something we consciously and rigorously cultivate. Building is tangible and lasting. It has the potential to be public, to shape the public realm, and to participate in the evolution of the urban context in which much of our work is sited.
P.R.O. has been recognized for our work at multiple scales, from awards by Architizer and the American Institute of Architects, to feature articles in the New York Times. In 2018 P.R.O. was awarded the New Practice New York prize by the American Institute of Architects and was named to the 2018 ‘Design Vanguard’ by Architectural Record Magazine.
Miriam majored in Economics at Cornell University. Her advanced undergraduate research focused on issues related to urban economics and more specifically the factors leading to the development of depressed areas within the urban cores that were left behind after white flight and urban renewal. As an M.Arch at Yale University School of Architecture, her design and seminar work focused on investigating how public investments in infrastructure can facilitate the creation of public spaces and environmentally responsible development. Upon graduation she was awarded the William Edward Parsons Memorial Medal for the student showing the most promise in urban design.
Before co-founding P.R.O. in 2012, Miriam spent five years working for Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects on major institutional projects including The Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia, PA and The Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment at Princeton University
Miriam has taught at Yale School of Architecture, Wesleyan University, and is currently a Visiting Professor at New York Institute of Technology. She has been an guest critic at the Harvard GSD, Columbia GSAPP, Cornell University, Syracuse University, Pratt Institute, and The Cooper Union.
Nathan brings a breadth of experience with global reach. He received his BA from Wesleyan University and his Masters in Architecture from Yale University where he was awarded the James Gamble Rogers Memorial Fellowship. Nathan was a Henry Luce Scholar in Beijing where he taught at Tsinghua University and researched the impact of rapid growth in Asian cities on the built environment. He recently published on the topic as a contributor for the Routledge publication Architecture and Capitalism.
Before co-founding P.R.O. Nathan worked for SHoP architects, Woods Bagot, and Steven Holl Architects where he developed expertise managing and executing complex projects with multiple stakeholders.
He is adjunct faculty at the New Jersey Institute of Technology School of Architecture and has been a guest critic at Wesleyan University, Yale, Columbia GSAPP, Cornell, Syracuse, Pratt Institute, and New York Institute of Technology.
The P.R.O. team is an ever evolving group of friends, collaborators, employees, and experts, including but not limited to:
Miriam Peterson, Nathan Rich, Sarah Kasper, Ben Hochberg, Bryson Wood, Ezra Wu, Pete DePasquale, Noel Turgeon, Jahaan Scipio, Dillon Wilson, Wade Cotton, Alex Warr, Piktone Fung, Lauren Johnson, Annika Bowker, and Hen.