Zero Net Carbon Collaboration

There are some exciting partnerships brewing and we’re looking forward to being involved with the Zero Net Carbon Collaboration (ZNCC).

This strategic alliance is committed to:

  • Coordinating/monitoring technology development and integration for, and providing a unified resource for, the goal of responsibly bringing historic places to Zero Net Carbon (ZNC) and;

  • Accelerating the ZNC of existing and historic buildings and places, accounting for both embodied carbon and operational carbon emissions, through developing leadership in best practices for the ZNC rehabilitation of most existing buildings, and in the responsible re-use of built resources in general.

“The Collaboration was initially formed in October 2017 by 5 partner organizations who include (subject to MOU finalization):

This organization is going to continue pushing for improving the performance of historic places and we’re excited to be a part of it! Here’s a link if you’d like to learn more:

Nakita Reed is 2018 Emerging Architect Award Winner

Nakita Reed wins this year's Emerging Architect Award!

This award recognizes exceptional leadership early in a career. In the relatively short time since her graduation, Nakita has made significant contributions to the fields of architecture, sustainability and preservation.

As Encore's co-founder and managing principal, she is the current chair of the Maryland Green Building Council and serves on several boards including the Alice Ferguson Foundation, Preservation Maryland and the Benjamin Banneker Development Corporation. She has been responsible for several award-winning projects including the restoration of the McCormick-Goodhart Mansion in Langley Park, MD.

Congratulations, Nakita! Congratulations to the other winners. Join us for the Washington Architecture Foundation’s Fall Fete! 

The Washington Architectural Foundation (WAF) and the Washington Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA|DC) present the 6th Annual Fall Design Fête to be held Friday, November 16, 2018 at the Washington National Cathedral. 

The Fall Design Fête celebrates the contributions of individuals who make Washington better through their contributions as designers, advocates, and clients. 

Encore Sustainable Design Wins Historical Architect Award

During its inaugural in 2013, the Architect’s Newspaper (AN)’s Best of Design Awards featured six categories. Since then, it has expanded to 26 exciting categories.

Criteria is based on evidence of innovation, creative use of new technology, sustainability, strength of presentation, and, most importantly, great design. 

The Menokin Project bagged the 2016 Best of Design Award for Unbuilt > On the Boards and Encore Sustainable Design won the Historical Architect Award.

For a complete list of winners, click here

Air Lift

The historic Buffalo Soldier House in Easton, MD has been lifted high in the air to allow a new foundation to be constructed underneath.

Previously the house sat just a few inches above the ground. Plumb bobs will be dropped from the irregular base of the house to locate the new foundation wall.

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After being set down, the interior will be renovated and the porches will be rebuilt.

Don Bibb, director of the Talbot Housing Authority, says “We plan to sell the house at an affordable price to a veteran."

Preservation and Sustainability: Improving Energy Efficiency

How much energy is consumed in historic buildings in the US? 

Are new sustainable technologies being invented to reduce the energy consumption of building operations?

These questions and more will be answered on Wednesday, May 16, 2018, as Encore Sustainable Design's Nakita Reed will make a presentation on improving energy efficiency of our historic homes. 

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Details of the event can be found here.

The Star Spangled Banner House

Located at the intersection of Albemarle and East Pratt Streets in Baltimore, the Star Spangled Banner Flag House was built in 1793 and was once the home and business of Mary Pickersgill.  Pickersgill sewed the garrison flag that flew over Fort McHenry and inspired Francis Scott Key to write our national anthem.

The house is composed of four stories (including a basement and attic) and is in relativity good condition.  The facades facing the streets have been altered multiple times since their original construction and the original standing seam roof has been replaced with a wood shingle roof.  The building has been in its current configuration since approximately 1950 and is currently used as an interpretive museum. 

The building was individually listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1969 and is located in the Baltimore City Jonestown Historic District.  The Maryland Historical Trust holds an easement on the building and the building is a CHAP Landmark. 

We’re working on documenting the Star Spangled Banner Flag House and will repair various elements that have reached the end of their service life.  Roof access is always tricky so we’re thankful to Elevated Element for getting fantastic drone coverage with the DJI Drone and working with Direct Dimensions to produce an interactive 3D model.

Horace Willson House Move

The historic Horace Wilson House is important for its associations with many of Clarksburg’s leading citizens during the 19th century.

Dr. Willson purchased the property in 1821 and expanded the building to a one and a half story dwelling and medical office around 1840.

Dr. Willson served in both the Maryland House of Delegates and Senate in the 19th century.

Due to the Clarksburg Square Road Extension that will connect to Frederick Road, the house needs to be moved approximately 70 feet to the south to preserve it.

The porch was dismantled and stored for reinstallation after the move.

Structural repairs were made to strengthen the exterior walls and sills before the move.

The house will rest on the east side of the site temporarily and then be moved to its final location.

The owner’s current plan is to adapt the building as a wine and beer shop.

Watch the video here.

Dr. Horace Willson House Project Team

Owner: Aries Investment Group

Developer: 3rd Try, LLC

Construction Manager: Montgomery County Department of Transportation

Civil Engineer: Gutschick, Little & Weber PC

Architect: Encore Sustainable Design, LLC

Structural Engineer: Linton Engineering, LLC

Contractor: Nastos Construction, Inc.

House Moving Contractor: Expert House Movers


Watch for more updates as the house moves!

Preservation Maryland Women’s Suffrage History Project

Preservation Maryland is working on documenting the places where Maryland women gathered, organized, planned, met, protested, marched and rallied under their Women’s Suffrage History Project campaign. ENCORE's Nakita Reed discusses how this movement impact women in architecture. 

This campaign was part of #GivingTuesday, where donations helped to identify, document and protect places that hosted pivotal moments of Maryland Suffragists and their right to vote.  Although #GivingTuesday is over, it's never too late to donate to the cause. Go to

In advance of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, Preservation Maryland is raising funds to support the Maryland Women's Suffrage History Project. Give now at: When you support this project, you'll join a chorus of Marylanders, including architect Nakita Reed, co-founder and owners of Encore Sustainable Design,, in helping correct the historical record - and making sure that the impact of Maryland Suffragists is forgotten no longer!

Making Historic Residences Sustainable

On Tuesday, November 28, ENCORE presented Sustainable + Historic – Intertwined Ideologies at the District Architecture Center. Organized by The Capital Area CRAN Committee, Nakita discussed a high-level view of the two disciplines and provided tangible take-aways for improving energy efficiency in historic buildings. The session focused on historic homes and understanding practical ways to improve energy efficiency without sacrificing character.

Maryland State Historic Tax Credit Winners Announced

Encore is very proud that our application for the Belnord Theater project resulted in the project being awarded $2 Million+ in state historic tax credits. Congratulations to all the winners and to the entire CASA de Maryland team: JRS Architects & Burdette Koehler Murphy & Associates. For more information, click on link below:

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Overlapping Concepts of Historic Preservation and Sustainability

The concepts of sustainability and historic preservation are ultimately concerned with how our current actions will effect the lives of future generations.  Both are concerned with a sense of loss - cultural or environmental - that may be felt by our collective descendants.

One of the reasons we started this company is because there's an unfortunate misconception that historic buildings cannot be sustainable. The myth is that it is 'better' (environmentally) to demolish a historic building and replace it with a newer one containing lots of high performing technology. This scenario rarely takes into account the damage the demolition would do to the cultural fabric of a place or the negative environmental impacts caused by the demolition.  

With more than 275 billion square feet of existing building stock contributing to the consumption of energy in the US, it is crucial that we continue to improve the energy efficiency of existing and historic buildings if there is any hope of meeting the energy reduction targets set by the Architecture 2030 challenge.

Existing and historic buildings possess the silent power to connect the past to the future. Not every building is worth saving but serious consideration of the environmental and cultural impacts of the demolition of a historic building must be taken prior to their demolition. 


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Celebrating Women in Architecture and Real Estate

September was a celebration of Women in Architecture in Washington, DC. Nakita Reed of Encore Sustainable Design attended the AIA Women’s Leadership Summit’s Opening Reception, the WIDEA (Women Inspiring Design, Equity in Architecture) Events, as well as AAREP’s (African American Real Estate Professionals) session called Meet the Women “What It’s Really Like Being a Woman in Commercial Real Estate”

Reed also had the pleasure of introducing Roberta Washington, FAIA at the Black Women in Architecture Brunch lecture titled Hidden Figures in Architecture.  This lecture gave the historical account of the numerous African American Women who worked as licensed architects or as lead designers in the architecture profession.

"I learned more about the impact of black women in the field of architecture through this one hour lecture than I did in all of my formal education.  I knew of Norma Merrick Sklarek but didn't know of the numerous women before her", said Reed. 

Nakita Reed at AAREP Event

Nakita Reed at AAREP Event

Nakita Reed introducing Roberta Washington FAIA at the Black Women in Architecture Brunch

Nakita Reed introducing Roberta Washington FAIA at the Black Women in Architecture Brunch

ENCORE Webinar on Historic Tax Credits

Hosted by Preservation Maryland, Nakita & Ward led a webinar on the historic tax credits available at the state and federal level.   This webinar gives a quick overview of historic tax credits, the application process and tips to make your application process seamless. 

Locals learn about historic tax credit programs

Locals learn about historic tax credit programs

Residents and business owners in Chestertown's historic district learned how they could take advantage of both state and federal tax credit programs during a workshop May 10.. The workshop was led by architects Nakita Reed and Ward Bucher of Encore Sustainable Design. Reed, who serves on the Preservation Maryland board, said this is the third historic tax credit workshop held on the Eastern Shore.