Architecture for Extreme Environments

The Digital Corps worked closely with George Elvin, Associate Professor of Architecture and Planning, to bring his vision of the Architecture for Extreme Environments (AEE) program to life. Dr. Elvin came to the Digital Corps with a small idea: to show the journey of his immersive learning course and teach the world about resilient architecture. The program took students through industry research and practical application as they traveled to America’s most extreme ecosystems.

Enhancing classroom learning

To implement his vision, Dr. Elvin and the Digital Corps collaborated on a creative solution. For more than two years, the Digital Corps took on the challenge to tell the program’s story in three interactive websites full of animations, videos, and educational content. Each website uniquely reflects the different environment’s ecosystem.

In 2016, the Architecture for Extreme Environments: Heat project highlighted Dr. Elvin’s trip to the scorching temperatures of Death Valley. After his first year of working with the Digital Corps, Dr. Elvin joined us again in 2017 with an even bigger idea.

Given the website’s unique qualities, it has won several awards in competitive design competitions including:


Student Best in Show and Student Gold In the Online/Interactive Websites category


In the Environmental Awareness and Architecture & Design categories

In the end, the Digital Corps delivered:

Continuing a cutting-edge process

In the frosty peaks of the Cascade Mountains on Mount Baker, we began our second year of production for the program. The Digital Corps team began the Architecture for Extreme Environments: Snow project by conducting interviews and collecting video footage of Dr. Elvin’s students at work in the labs. We even sent a Digital Corps student-employee with Dr. Elvin and his class to the extreme environment so that we could take photos and record video first-hand. Meanwhile, back in the Digital Corps office, students worked to design a unique internet experience, generate engaging content, and develop the Architecture for Extreme Environments website. Later in the process, the team provided Dr. Elvin with print promotion and marketing materials to show his program at industry-related conferences and exhibitions.