In 1990, after an undergraduate degree in architecture from Washington University (St. Louis, MO), Kurt's interest in bioregionalism and climate-responsive design led to further study as a graduate student at the University of Idaho in Moscow. His Master's Thesis, funded through the University of Michigan Center for Sustainable Systems spawned a design-build project demonstrating the (re)use of by-product-based materials and an entrepreneurial vision.
While in Moscow, Idaho, Kurt Rathmann designed and built resource efficient houses, additions, and renovations from 1996-2007 as 3 Little Pigs Design-Build. The Kohler Residence is featured in Catherine Wanek's "The New Strawbale Home". Also, he contributed to the design of numerous projects working with DK Mullin Architects, including the award-winning Moscow Charter School and the Moscow Food Cooperative. While teaching at the University of Idaho Dept. of Architecture, Kurt resurrected a design-build focus enabling architecture students to roll up their sleeves and construct service projects for the community.
In 2007, Kurt moved to Spokane, Washington, and is the president of Rathmann Design, Inc. and 3LP Builders, Inc. Rathmann Design-3LP Builders is a client-oriented design-build collaborative, working to create super-insulated, resource-efficient and climate-responsive architecture. As principal architect and lead carpenter, Kurt takes pride in developing and sustaining long-term working relationships.
Kurt has written curriculum development packages and educational publications including "Recycling and Reuse of Building Materials" and "Thermal Mass in Passive Solar and Energy Conserving Buildings" with Bruce Haglund. In Spokane, he presented "Deep Green Design-Build" at the Pacific Northwest Region AIA Conference, and was recently selected as one of ten presenters for the 101010 Building Slam sponsored by the Cascadia Green Building Council and Northwest Ecobuilding Guild.
For more information about resource and energy efficient materials and methods including straw bale construction, Rastra insulated concrete forms, SIPs (structural insulated panels), rainwater collection, daylighting, compact design, and more, Kurt is continually updating a companion website called The Deep Green Home. Please visit the site at "www.resourceefficienthome.com"