About ESD

Established in 1994, ESD delivers highly integrated urban design solutions for the public and private sectors, by means of stakeholder-collaborative design processes, which optimise outcomes for new and existing urban areas, at all scales from the region to architecture.  Based in Melbourne, Australia, ESD is a leader in the New Urbanism, practicing mostly in Australia and New Zealand, and occasionally in North America, the UK and Asia.

ESD is committed to improving the sustainability, amenity and prosperity of urban areas, by means of how the built environment is designed and developed, and by how the natural environment is conserved and/or modified, in order to optimise integrated benefits to the Community, the Environment and Economics.

ESD designs complex and controversial urban projects at all scales, ranging from state-wide growth management codes and regional urban structuring, to large private-sector mixed-use developments, revitalisations of existing villages, towns and cities, and the preliminary design of residential, commercial, civic and mixed-use buildings.  While ESD is often asked to contribute fundamentally to the early stages of major projects, ESD also remains involved in the detailed implementation of selected projects.

Chip Kaufman and Wendy Morris are the directors of ESD.   Both have developed integrated expertise linking urban design, town planning, architecture, traffic and transport design, economics, development feasibility, social planning, environmental design, and Enquiry by Design.  This rare combination of skills enables them to relatively quickly comprehend and solve highly complex urban design challenges.

ESD is widely recognised for having profoundly re-directed Australia’s urban development from conventional suburban development towards sustainable urbanism through delivering many public presentations, running numerous training workshops and leading over one hundred Enquiry by Design projects across Australia and New Zealand since 1991.

ESD is actively involved in the promotion and development of New Urbanism. Both Wendy and Chip are co-founders of the Australian Council for New Urbanism and Charter members of the US-based Congress for the New Urbanism.