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    Betsy Nelson, Principal

    Betsy Nelson, for many years has provided the architectural, planning and leadership skills to oversee numerous complex projects for the firm’s diverse clientele. For each project she dedicates thoughtful, creative efforts and a multi-faceted approach to produce environments which sensitively serve the users, inhabitants, visitors, and neighbors. She enjoys working closely with jointly-formed client and community groups, to successfully blend their range of needs and aspirations into a program for the completed structures.

    She has been responsible for a wide range of project types, including educational and recreational facilities; master plans and feasibility studies; community facilities; religious structures; offices; and residential developments, from large-scale multi-family housing complexes to dormitories, waterfront communities, congregate housing and special needs housing. Work includes new construction, renovation, historic preservation, restoration, and adaptive reuse.

    She integrates energy conservation and sustainability into her work, from the early planning stages to technical detailing and material selections. She has worked jointly with EnergyStar Homes to achieve the first EnergyStar rating for publicly funded housing in the state.

    Ms. Nelson became a firm principal in 1986 and president in 1991.
    Major projects for which she has been responsible include:

    Turn-Key Development Package for the College of Visual & Performing Arts, Starr Building, UMass Dartmouth, New Bedford, MA
    Renewal and relocation of the Arts College and Galleries to the historically significant Star Building in downtown New Bedford. Program, criteria for renovation, and development of RFP for turn-key construction, successfully implemented.

    GoKids Boston at UMass Boston
    Campus renovations for a new children’s center, jointly planned by UMass Boston and Children’s Hospital, for learning, health education, monitoring, fitness and games.

    Building Renovations at Putnam Gardens, Cambridge, MA

    $4M of repairs to solid masonry bearing walls, replacement of lintels and flashing, and new windows.

    Window Replacement and Entry Renovations
    Window replacement at two townhouse developments in Cambridge; window replacement at four high-rise developments in Boston; entry renovations including window and door replacement at the Franklin Field elderly development in Boston.

    Renovation of Plant Court, Jamaica Plain
    $8.1M construction, new and rehab for 45 units of publicly-funded family housing; preservation of original oval greenspace as the focal outdoor gathering space. First subsidized housing development in the state to receive an EnergyStar rating for energy conservation.

    Master Plan for Georges Island in Boston Harbor, MA
    A five-volume master plan for the island’s historic site and structures, its natural, cultural and architectural resources. The master plan investigated the existing conditions of the site and structures, interpretive resources and programs, visitor and staff services, and schematic alternatives for the enhancement of the island experience for visitors, and the preservation of significant buildings and landscapes.

    Master Plan for the Renewal of the Lisbon Zoo, Portugal

    Preservation and renewal of the natural forested uplands and lower wetlands to provide ecologically-based zones for animal environments and visitor interpretation, for enhanced animal care and protection, and enhanced visitor experiences.

    Community Center Renovations, Boston
    The reconfiguration and renovation of eight community centers, with kitchens and dining, lounges and meeting areas, program and arts spaces, upgraded for accessibility and new programs. Complete interior renovations and building envelope improvements.

    St. John’s Church, Newton, MA

    Master plan and phased renovations for the renewal of this historically-significant English Gothic masonry church originally designed by Henry Vaughan. Research on the evolution of the structures over time, including the addition of fellowship hall, kitchen and dining, meeting rooms and day care.

    Renovations to 43 West Street, Liturgical Apostolate Center, Boston, MA
    Repairs and renovations to a five-story brick Bulfinch building, one of the few remaining intact in Boston, to accommodate a convent, artisans’ workshops, display and sales space, and meeting rooms and chapel for the community. Building envelope restoration, including masonry and windows.

    Southwest Campus High School, Boston, MA
    An award-winning high school serving 2,000 students and the community, designed as an environmental sciences magnet school. Work with the Audubon Society to identify and map habitats and wildlife, and to preserve important wet-lands and natural features.

    Expansion of Bunker Hill Community College, Charlestown, MA
    A master plan for renovations and expansions to provide a major new recreation facility for the college and the community, including a new center for maintenance facilities, gymnasium and pool, multi-purpose spaces, day care center, and new landscaped circulation paths and outdoor gathering spaces.

    Armenian Cultural and Educational Center, Watertown, MA

    An award-winning cultural facility, with lobby gallery for displays, recreation/banquet hall with commercial kitchen, library, classrooms and meeting rooms grouped around a shared outdoor courtyard.

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
    Masters of Architecture, 1972
    Wellesley College, B.A., 1970
    Leed Technical Workshops
    Masonry Restoration Workshops

    Professional Outreach:

    Grunsfeld Fellowship for the Study of Urban Public Spaces

    Visiting Architectural Critic, Boston Architectural College

    Architectural Registration:

    The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 1977


    Antonio P. deCastro, Principal

    Antonio P. de Castro, with more than 40 years of experience in architectural design, and a managing partner in the firm since 1968, has developed the expertise required to design and coordinate diverse and challenging multi-million dollar projects.

    The scope of this work includes community centers, museums, religious facilities, schools and higher education facilities, residential complexes, recreational facilities, office buildings, technical facilities, hospitals and transportation facilities.

    He enjoys working closely with clients, agencies, and community groups to achieve their special goals and to provide structures which reflect the spirit and character of their community. He has successfully completed numerous master plans as well as the full range of design services through artwork, displays, and furnishings. A selective list of projects includes:

    Community Center Adaptive Reuse

    Conversion of Existing Building for COPA/Cambridge Organization of Portuguese Americans Conversion of a three-story masonry furniture building for the new agency offices and community center for this social services organization. Renovation and renewal of the building envelope and interior.

    St. Anthony’s Church, Chapel, Rectory & Fellowship Hall, Cambridge, MA
    A new parish center in East Cambridge funded and constructed in phases over twenty years, and continuing to serve the community as a place of gathering, celebration and worship.

    Adaptive Re-Use of the Odd Fellows Hall, Lynn, MA

    Historic restoration of the exterior masonry structure, adaptive reuse of the interior for housing, commercial space and community facilities. Work for review by the Mass Historic Commission.

    List Art Center and Galleries, Brown University, Providence, RI

    A multi-functional museum and arts building that includes galleries, classrooms, lecture halls, auditorium, and studio space. The Center is located on the crest of College Hill, and the triangular jags of the roofline, with skylights to galleries and studios, are a dramatic element in Providence's skyline. Designed in joint venture with Philip Johnson.

    Renovation and Expansion of the East End House, Cambridge, MA

    Complete renovation and renewal, with building additions, for this long-standing social services agency. Spaces include offices, day care center, classrooms and program spaces.

    Renovations to St. Francis House, Boston, MA

    Conversion of the Boston Electric Building to a Community Center and Social Services Center for the homeless. Renovated facilities include commercial kitchen and dining for volunteer staff to serve hundreds of free meals daily, program spaces, art rooms, clothing dispensary, barbershop, first aid, and chapel.

    Unitarian Universalist Church of Reading, MA
    Master Plan, renovation and expansion of the historically significant stone church, renovation of adjacent wood-frame structures for community classrooms and meetings, and the addition of a new assembly hall with commercial kitchen.

    Cabo da Roca Oceanfront Resort and Housing, Sintra, Portugal

    Master planning for the development of a dramatic coastal site, with small clusters of housing around shared courtyards, hotel, a golf course, and beach access; protection of the majority of the site in its natural state, to safeguard rare plant species.

    Renovation of Six Masonry Structures for NCCI Gardner

    $17M renovation of six historically significant Victorian-era masonry buildings to serve a population of 1,000, with dormitories, program spaces, kitchen, dining, and administration.

    St. Theresa's Church, Chapel and Hospitality Pavilion, West Roxbury, MA

    Renovation of the stone Gothic church and chapel, and the addition of a concrete and glass pavilion providing a versatile entry space for hospitality and arrival, music performance and accessibility to the church and chapel.

    Pavilion for Pope John Paul II and Facilities for Celebrants, Boston Common

    Mr. deCastro was architect and construction manager for the celebration of the pope’s mass, and all visitor facilities on the Boston Common. Planning included circulation and facilities for hundreds of thousands of visitors, accommodations for the media, and for the celebrants, while protecting the landscape and structures of Boston Common.

    St. Patrick's Church, Brockton, MA

    An international-award winning renewal of this masonry neo-classical church serving a diverse community.

    Student Housing, Administration Building, Library and Auditorium, Fitchburg State College, MA

    New women’s dormitory, new student apartments and common areas, renovations of men’s dormitories, and new structures for the campus administration, library and auditorium.

    Student Center Renovations & Additions, Bristol Community College, Fall River, MA

    The consolidation of student services within a renovated and expanded student center. Renovations, new atrium at dining and kitchen.


    Massachusetts Institute of Technology, B. of Architecture, 1955.
    U.S. Air Force Institute of Technology
    Harvard University, Legal Problems of Construction
    ACEC-AIA Value Analysis Workshop
    BSA Sustainable Design Workshops

    Architectural Registration:

    National, Massachusetts, Rhode Island. Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, New York, Connecticut, Georgia, Texas, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Alabama, District of Columbia


    Member of the Board, Association for the Development of Catholic University, Portugal

    Member, Interfaith Forum on Religion, Art and Architecture

    American Institute of Architects
    Member, Boston Society of Architects
    Host, Great Cities of the World Convention, Boston
    Past Member, Wellesley Art Commission

    Past Member, Bedford Historic District Commission