David Hertz Architects FAIA & The Studio of Environmental Architecture


b. 1986, HK.



Office Profile

SEA is dedicated to the design and construction of sustainable and restorative places. By designing with nature, we create architecture of enduring value for people and the planet. Each project is a unique architectural expression that responds to client needs, site specificities, local climate, and new ideas. The interplay of architecture’s fundamental elements—Light and shadow, form and material, proportion and scale—realize spaces that simultaneously feel timeless and contemporary.

The practice of architecture lies at the intersection of many disciplines, and we view design as an opportunity to harmonize many related crafts and sciences. SEA promotes a systems thinking approach to architecture, a way to synthesize diverse perspectives and fields into a cohesive, performance-driven whole. In addition to buildings, we produce industrial design, public sculpture, and materials research within a single versatile design culture.

The studio has particular expertise in regenerative design and sustainability in residential and commercial projects. We believe architecture must strive to reverse global climate change and prepare for the environmental volatility of the anthropocene. To that end, a think-tank within the studio—Resilience Lab—develops green technology and provides communities with planning services. We also help families recover from disasters through fire-rebuilds and related projects. Enlightened architecture can heal people and restore ecosystems, ensuring symbiosis between built and natural environments.

Visit our Links page for information on organizations we are affiliated with or support.



David Hertz, FAIA

David has been working at the edge of sustainability and the forefront of regenerative architecture for over 35 years. As a systems thinker, he engages a variety of fields through design and believes in expanding the conceptual limits of architecture.

Throughout his career, David has connected the art of building with responsible stewardship of the Earth. A LEED accredited professional, he serves on the board of Heal The Bay and is a member of the City of Santa Monica’s Task Force on the Environment. David taught sustainable design and mentored students at his alma mater, SCI-Arc, as well as Art Center College of Design and USC, and currently serves on the Academic Advisory Committee for UCLA’s Extension Program.

A lifelong passion for surfing has made David keenly active in issues regarding water quality and access. He and his wife Laura founded Skysource to develop and distribute atmospheric water generation technology, and their efforts culminated in winning the Water Abundance XPRIZE. Since then, they have focused on making communities more resilient through better design, planning, and products. Since the Woolsey Fire devastated their community, David is committed to helping friends and neighbors rebuild their homes and lives.