Based in Wellington New Zealand, CMA+U is an international architecture studio set up specifically to offer clients a new approach: to think, operate and deliver projects differently.
We create exciting, original and bold ideas through a unique rigorously divergent, yet pragmatic and poetic studio development process to ensure that each project is carefully and thoughtfully guided into reality. We are constantly searching for better solutions, more sensitive, more connected, more enabling, often discovering unexpected solutions to liberate site specifics and client needs. Our design research based process draws upon the intelligence embedded within integrated cross disciplinary thinking, broad cutting edge international experience, engaged with local knowledge and robust organisational skills. We bring an integrated approach, which includes asking critical questions to unlock and open broad engagement and collaboration in the search for appropriate highly optimized outcomes and results.
The practice is led by Chris Moller (registered UK architect) with 30 years of international experience across the fields of Architecture and Urban Design bringing long experience of numerous international competition wins and the establishment of ‘S333 Architecture+Urbanism’ in Europe to realize major architectural and urban scale projects with private and public sector clients often in combination with design research while also teaching at the Housing+Urbanism unit at the Architecture Association in London. The realization of such cutting edge projects as Schots 1&2 in the Netherlands established a unique reputation at the leading edge of contemporary urban architecture in Europe. A selection of this cutting edge work was exhibited under the title “New Urban Ecologies: on the urban designing of architecture” during 2007- 2008 in Paris, Berlin and London. (La Galerie d’Architecture, Paris; the DAZ gallery Berlin; and the NLA gallery London NLA).
Moller’s international expertise includes the design and development of architectural and urban design projects which includes divergent and creative engagement with clients, consultants and design team members to unlock social and technical innovation and deliver a new generation of high quality sustainable environments.
He initiated the innovative international lecture and workshop series titled ‘Opening the Envelope’ in 1995 to shift thinking on urban planning techniques and processes to cope with the challenges of “Changing Global Conditions” in the 21st century. This led to a series of large scale architectural and urban commissions across Europe from Tallinn, Oslo and Bergen, to Grenoble, Tblisi, Oldham, London, Plymouth, Amsterdam and Groningen.
Moller has been member of various urban think-tanks in the UK and the Netherlands, he has been a juror on numerous International Competitions, lectured in Europe, America, and Asia/ Pacific, and has taught extensively as design tutor in the post graduate Housing and Urbanism Unit at the Architecture Association in London. He has written for publications such as ‘Transforming Cities’ urban research investigating Rio de Janiero’s Favela’s 2001, and has worked as a regional advisor for Phaidon Publications Architecture Atlas of 21st Century Architecture. In 2007 he was asked to be International Conference Moderator in Estonia to celebrate the life work of Louis Kahn and in 2008 was interviewed with Saskia Sassen and Leif Edvinsson for the Pavlov Medialab documentary “The City, The Globe: Scenario’s of real growth for future Cities.”
Collaborators: Jaap Dankert, Andrew Mitchener, Hamish Shaw, Ellen Hickman, Hamish Parker, Ben Sutherland, Grant Douglas, Clayton Sime
Consultants: Patrick Arnold (eCubed building workshop), Earl Rutherford (MOTM), Alistair Cattanach (DTC), Neil Thomas (Atelier One), Luke Engleback (Studio Engleback), Makers of Architecture
• Founding Director of Chris Moller Architecture + Urbanism (CMA+U)
• Founding Director of S333 Architecture + Urbanism (1991-2009)
• Deputy Chair, Board member PrefabNZ
• VUW Architecture Studio Unit tutor - undergraduate and masters (2011-2013)
• winner of numerous awards and international competitions including Future Schools Australia, Samarkand Regeneration, Gallipoli Peace Park, Europan 3 Groningen (Netherlands), Grenoble Ville du Foret, Tbilisi Rose Revolution Square redevelopment, Tallinn Aquarium.
• Senior Urbanist for the city of Groningen 1995-2003; urbanist responsible for major masterplan developments at Europapark with Wiel Arets, Central Station with KCAP, and Arts/Architecture Manifesation Blue Moon festival with Toyo Ito.
• Moderator of Louis Kahn symposium @ Kahn's birthplace Saaremaa, Estonia 2006 with his son Nathaniel Kahn, partner Anne Tyng, and researchers Robert McCarter, Thomas Leslie and Kimbell Art Museum curator Patricia Loud.
• Post Graduate tutor at the Architecture Association 1995 - 2003
• Adjunct Professor Queensland University linked to Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) to build the ‘Connected Developments Project’ an advanced interactive city model with Prof. John Frazer.
• Advisor to Platform Gras Architecture Centre ‘thinktank’ Groningen, Netherlands
• Founding partner of ‘City On A Roof’ non-profit Innovation Platform (Groningen-Hamburg-Tallinn)
• Regional Advisor for Phaidon Publications Architecture Atlas of 21st Century Architecture.