Since 2003, Jan O’Connor has been the Managing Partner of environa studio, a Sydney based architectural firm, actively engaged with social and environmental design solutions.
Together with the practice founder, Tone Wheeler, who has been involved in the sustainability arena for nearly forty years, sustainable design has expanded to incorporate many other issues. It is inherent to environa’s being, no longer requiring a separate agenda. All projects are guided by a ‘triple bottom line’ approach.
Environa works with many different clients: government, corporate, indigenous and not for profit organisations and has built a strong reputation with numerous awards and accolades for sustainable design, winning the Milo Dunphy Award in 2014 for The Wayside Chapel. The studio’s projects span urban design, civic and commercial projects with a particular emphasis on social and affordable housing.
Jan was employed as the Retail Concepts Design Manager in the property development department of Myer Stores Ltd whilst completing an Architectural Degree (Hons) at R.M.I.T. Following ten years of corporate employment, in 1996 she co-founded the iconic retail tea company T2.
Responsible for all design, branding & marketing, Jan was influential in changing the perception of how tea could be sold & promoted. Following the establishment of T2 (which was acquired by Unilever in 2013 and is regarded as a disruptor brand in a previously conservative industry) she returned to architectural practice with environa studio.