Architectural Design

We design thoughtfully detailed bespoke projects ranging from residences, work environments, flexible spaces and community places. We work globally with design commissions in New York City, Australia and the Philippines. Particularly interested in the relationship between human behavior and space, our work reflects the unique character of each client and context. Invested in a clarity of flow within spaces, light and the honest crafting of materials, our work realizes a tactile engagement of design.     


Through our research initiatives, we seek to explore new ideas and a more comprehensive understanding of architecture in the social realm. Integral to actLAB’s process is to be engaged in the current discourse of Architecture through teaching, competitions and publications. actLAB’s principals, Aya Maceda and James Carse teach design studios at Parsons School of Design SCE and at Columbia University GSAPP respectively. Studios such as City of Play and Micro-Macro Living allow for the investigation of current urban phenomena and addressing them through design. actLAB’s recent research agenda is produced and disseminated through collaborations with HardWorking GoodLooking publishers. 

Social Advocacy

We dedicate time as a practice towards projects of social significance, bringing design to communities in need and those unable to access architects for their development causes. We believe in the positive impact of design and that it should be provided to all. In 2013, actLAB principal, Aya Maceda was awarded the Percival and Naomi Goodman Fellowship by Columbia University GSAPP which fuelled the our first project, the Active School for disaster-stricken areas of the Philippines. We continue to partner with organizations and communities to design community centers and affordable artist studios in our New York City. Contact us to partner and support our work!  …