Diego Macias

RA, LEED AP BD+C, EIT

Associate | Architect

At SMMA

  • Diego is an architect for SMMA’s Corporate & Technology Practice Group, specifically working with the Science & Technology, Higher Education, and Corporate & Commercial studios
  • Carries out designs through the construction phase while coordinating with his clients and SMMA’s internal team to develop comprehensive space planning solutions
  • Has experience in creating existing conditions documentation for feasibility studies, construction documents, MEP coordination, and 3D modeling
  • Assists with SMMA’s Sustainability efforts through conducting extensive research via daylight modeling, heat-transfer simulations, and data analysis; he creates corresponding visual representations to aid in clear communication

Visualizing Complex Issues

Diego understands that as a multidisciplinary firm, SMMA provides a lot of knowledge to its clients — Often times, abstract knowledge. Converting the abstract into visualizations is an easy way to keep clients engaged throughout the entire design process.

“It’s extremely important to be able to produce something that is simple and easy to interpret, such as a design concept or analysis,” he explains. “Our clients are a part of the team and need to be involved with what’s happening. Even if we are using something relatively complex, like Python or Excel pivot tables, we make sure to aggregate and translate the data so that everyone is on the same page and can work off the same intuition.”

Mixing Art with Science

“I have an engineering background, but I started off doing architecture. I just love how architecture is both art and science, and you can switch between the two pretty much whenever you want.”

For Diego, learning engineering alongside architecture always meant that he was able to alternate between his technical and artistic sides. His collective experiences as an engineer consultant and with other architecture firms before SMMA have honed his skills to produce meaningful end products and connect with members of all disciplines. Outside of work, Diego is also an advocate for the environment.

“I make sure I bike or run to work, and it’s a cool thing to do,” he says. “I’m a Cambridge resident, so it’s particularly easy for me. I’m always looking for ways to lower my carbon footprint.”