Miller Hull

Miller Hull Presents a Regenerative Campus for Teaching and Learning

3-28-2024 | News

The Seattle-based architecture firm’s proposal for the American School in Quito’s new Puembo campus places third in the International Ideas Competition

(Quito, Ecuador) March 2024 — The Miller Hull Partnership’s design proposal for the American School in Quito’s new Puembo campus placed third in the International Ideas Competition—a competition organized by the American School of Quito and the College of Architects of Pichincha.

Tasked with the relocation of a major academic institution from the city center of Quito to a developing neighborhood at the edge of the city, Miller Hull’s proposal draws from the rich natural environments of Ecuador to develop a regenerative campus focused on the integration of the institution’s established pedagogy with natural ecosystems. In collaboration with Leppanen Anker Arquitectura, Knot Studio, PAE, and Biohabitats, Miller Hull’s proposal targets full Living Building certification, aiming to be among the most sustainable campuses in Latin America.

The design is organized as a series of curvilinear courtyard buildings, creating smaller learning communities within the larger campus. A literal and figurative learning path threads the campus community together, providing space for exploration, curiosity, and overlap between age groups. This learning journey connects significant social and educational spaces such as outdoor classrooms, sensory gardens, playgrounds, libraries, auditoriums, and cafeterias, and challenges the idea that learning only occurs in the classroom. While the campus is unified by a common architectural language, each school has a distinctive identity in its relation to color and materiality, informed by developmental milestones and inspired by the different eco-regions of Ecuador.

Targeting full Living Building Certification, the school will provide long-term value with low-cost operations and serve as an educational tool to inspire generations to come. Achieving net positive energy through the use of rooftop PV arrays, the campus provides enough energy to convert the school’s existing diesel school buses to an electrified bus fleet. Constructed wetlands and a living machine process all stormwater and wastewater on site, avoiding additional loads to the municipal infrastructure. These strategies, combined with the ideal climatic conditions in Quito, provide the opportunity for this project to become a model for sustainable campus planning in the region.

About The Miller Hull Partnership, LLP
The Miller Hull Partnership, LLP is an internationally recognized architecture, planning, urban and interior design firm that works to create a regenerative and inclusive future through the built environment. Since its founding in 1977, Miller Hull has been designing dynamic and environmentally responsible buildings that provide enduring value for their communities. The firm has a studio in Seattle and San Diego with work extending across multiple typologies for a range of public and private clients where people Live, Work, Learn, Gather and Serve. For more information, please visit

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