The Princeton Envelope Group (PEG) is a design and research unit at the Princeton University School of Architecture. Headed by Alejandro Zaera-Polo and coordinated by Urtzi Grau. The unit is engaged in a three year research program on the Politics of the Building Envelope the conclusions of which will be published in a forthcoming book by Actar Press, Barcelona+New York.


Alejandro Zaero-Polo

Alejandro Zaera-Polo is an architect and a co-founder of Foreign Office Architects (FOA). He worked at OMA in Rotterdam prior to establishing FOA in 1993, where he has developed his professional activities since. FOA’s work is characterized by deftly integrating architecture, urban design, and landscape architecture, while developing a rigorous experimentation on construction technology searching for contemporary tectonic expressions. FOA’s critically-acclaimed and award-winning international projects, developed both for the public and private sector include the Yokohama Ferry Terminal in Japan, the Barcelona Forum Park and Auditoria, the Rioja Technology Transfer Centre, a Bamboo-House social Housing in Madrid, and the Highcross Retail complex in Leicester, amongst others. FOA produced the blueprint for the London 2012 Olympics and was part of United Architects’ proposal for Ground Zero.

Zaera-Polo’s work has consistently merged the practice of architecture with theoretical practice, providing a strong intellectual rigor to the discourse on architecture through a sharp capacity to identify social and political trends and creatively extrapolate them. In parallel to his professional activities, he has developed a substantial role as a critic and an academic: he was Dean of the Berlage Institute in Rotterdam from 2000–2005, and is still holding the Berlage Chair in Delft Technical University and partaking in the Institute’s current Research Board. He has been Visiting Professor at Columbia and UCLA School of Architecture and led a Diploma Unit for eight years at the Architectural Association in London. He has published extensively as a critic in professional magazines worldwide, including El Croquis, Quaderns, A+U, Arch+, Harvard Design Magazine.

Urtzi Grau

Urtzi Grau is principal of Fake Industries. He graduated from the School of Architecture of Barcelona in 2000, was awarded Master of Science in Advanced Architectural Design by the Graduate School of Architecture Planning and Preservation, Columbia University in 2004, and is currently completing his Ph.D. at Princeton University School of Architecture on the 1970’s urban renewal of Barcelona. His work and writings have been published in different international journals as 306090, Architect’s Newspaper, Domus, Pasajes de Arquitectura y Critica, Pidgin, Volume, Via Arquitectura or Visions.

2009 Studio

2009 Seminar

2010 Studio

2010 Seminar

Jean Choi Christine Chang Brandon Clifford Robert Cha
Craig Cook Chienchuan Chen Juan DeMarco Brandon Clifford
Leo Henke Jean Choi Rachel Glabe Juan DeMarco
Carrie Norman Craig Cook Yu-Cheng Koh Rachel Glabe
Chris Oliver Kevin Hayes Christina McMillan Yu-Cheng Koh
Garrett Ricciardi Leo Henke Martin Roth Yuanrong Ma
Julian Rose Chris Hillyard Osnat Tadmor Christina McMillan
Milena Stopic John Houser Philip Tidwell Martin Roth
Silan Yip Thomas Kelley Hao Ruan
Carrie Norman Osnat Tadmor
Chris Oliver Philip Tidwell
Garrett Ricciardi Man Hei Yeung
Julian Rose
Milena Stopic
Giancarlo Valle
Thomas Wong
Silan Yip
Edward Yung