caliper architecture


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Check out Caliper Studio’s new interior window
wall system. A precision fabricated prototype using custom cold rolled steel profiles is on display in our Brooklyn office.
New studio under construction
New studio under construction
New studio under construction

New Passive Studio

Passive House detailing included Intus triple pane windows, continuous mineral wool insulation, energy recovery ventilation, and Intello air barrier tested to .4 ACH 50 exceeding the passive house airtightness requirement.

See 475 blog article for more information.
New York Times Passive House article featuring Caliper Studio

Passive House Article

Caliper Architecture was featured on the cover of the Real Estate Section of the March 27, 2015, New York Times, covering the growing Passive House Movement. Caliper was highlighted in the article, explaining the benefits of living in a home built with Passive House Details.
New York Passive House and 475 followed up on the Times article highlighting specific details and testing Caliper has used on its projects. For more information see the links to the right.


Caliper Architecture grounds its work in the belief that details matter. With an approach informed by the craft of making, Caliper strives to provide thoughtful inspired architecture that works.


Caliper Architecture is a design office focused on thoughtful, imaginative architecture enriched by hands-on experience with the physical building process. With over a decade of designing residential, commercial and institutional projects, Caliper Architecture has developed an approach that emphasizes conceptual clarity and the judicious use of resources with the goal of providing durable, sustainable, and inspired environments for people.

In 2003 Stephen Lynch, Jonathan Taylor and Michael Conlon discovered a shared passion for the craft of making and partnered to form a design studio and fabrication shop in Brooklyn, New York. As the office has grown, Caliper Studio continues to offer a suite of services ranging from building design to the design of building components and furniture as well as custom fabrication and installation. There is a longstanding symbiotic relationship between the design and production sides of the practice in which each benefits from the experience of the other to offer clients a unique set of skills and expertise under one roof.

Caliper Architecture’s recent and current projects include a 23,000 SF mixed-use building in Brooklyn consisting of nine residential apartments above a three screen independent cinema; the renovation and restoration of the residence and studio of the late artist Roy Lichtenstein; a 3,000 SF zero net energy private residence in Somona County, California; a low energy townhouse renovation in Brooklyn following Passive House principles; and various renovation projects for the YMCA of Greater New York.
Stringer stair being fabricated in Caliper's shop


In addition to providing fabrication solutions for general contractors and end-users, the fabrication shop at Caliper Studio serves as a laboratory for the testing of ideas during the design process allowing clients and other stakeholders to fully understand details prior to starting construction.
Caliper Architecture has successfully integrated custom fabrication into its design projects at a range of different budgets and continues to explore pre-engineered solutions to help bring down design and production times.
Custom bent metal edge profile for the Lictenstein Studio table
Custom detailed metal channel organizer for the inside of the Lictenstein table
Box beam mock up being clamped for welding in Caliper's Brooklyn fabrication shop

passive house

Caliper Architecture Principal Stephen Lynch is a certified Passive House designer. Passive House is the world’s most rigorous energy efficiency standard for buildings. Following Passive House design principles leads to durable buildings that are more comfortable to live in and use significantly less energy for heating and cooling than standard construction.
Caliper seeks to incorporate the sound design principles from the Passive House standard whenever possible and encourage clients to learn about the benefits of the approach.


Underlying the work and culture at Caliper Architecture is a deep curiosity about how buildings and their components are constructed as well as a belief that there is always room for improvement. Ongoing investigations in the office focus on drilling down into the details of fabrication and construction methods to uncover potential improvements with big picture benefits including better performance, reduced costs, or innovative formal expression.

Parametric Building Components

Caliper has developed and refined the details for several building component types including: a steel and glass interior door system, a steel and glass skylight system, and an adjustable shelving system. Designed to be ordered to custom specifications on a per project basis, the systems provide a level of functionality and efficiency closer to a developed product than a one-off custom solution.

Parametric blackened steel door profile

High Performance Building

A well designed, well constructed building keeps out water and wind, is smart about its orientation and exposures to let in sun energy when desired and keep it out when not. Well designed buildings get the insulation on the right side of the air and vapor control layers to prevent mold growth and have windows and doors that seal tight. When buildings are tight they need continuous fresh air delivered to every room and this air can be filtered and can be pre-heated by the outgoing exhaust air in the winter to save energy and eliminate drafts. If a building is designed with performance in mind it costs less to operate by using less energy and often needs less mechanical equipment which can reduce its cost to build. Most importantly a building designed with performance in mind is more comfortable and provides its owners and occupants with the satisfaction of living in a well designed environment. Caliper continues to explore smarter construction methods and to develop custom tools to help us understand how design decisions affect performance before they get built.

Intello passive house air sealing and joint taping

Custom Mechanics

Using mechanics in building components allows for the transformation of space as well as the opportunity for increased building performance. Programmatic requirements and compact spaces create the opportunity for adaptable rooms through operable partitions or large scale door systems, and Caliper is interested in developing new mechanics and systems that make it possible for these to adapt to varying circumstances. Caliper is also interested in the potential of automated operable windows as a means to capitalize on temperature fluctuations to efficiently moderate and maintain comfortable internal temperatures.

Custom sliding door track profile

Alternative Construction Methods

As a firm with a hands-on approach to the physical construction of buildings, Caliper is particularly interested in exploring the potential of alternative methods of construction. Caliper has worked with sprayed cementitious wall systems on two projects and continues to explore innovative uses of CNC cut pipe as self-jigging framing members.

Sonoma House exterior walls constructed using sprayed concrete on form work

Computational Design

Caliper continues to explore the use of custom software tools to assist in the design process. Custom scripts can iteratively explore a range of possible solutions that meet stated design criteria, and can help manage the flow of information in particularly complex design solutions. Coupled with tangible goals and a deep understanding of physical fabrication methods these tools are a powerful complement to intuition and experience.

Laser cut pipe assembly generated using a custom script

Bent Panel Facade System

Caliper looks for opportunities to explore the fabrication of complex geometry through simple fabrication methods. One example is a bent metal rain screen panel system constructed of sheet metal with different sized notches removed from each corner and the edges folded to form a standoff and attachment flange. The result is irregular three dimensional panels that create an effect similar to wind rippled water. Metal panel rain screen facades are ideal cladding systems for high performance buildings with exterior insulation and the potential for unique patterns through bending and cutting provides fertile ground for exploration.

Stainless steel bent tab facade system


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