Studio Luz Architecture and Urban Design

Hansy Better

Principal + Co-Founder, AIA, LEED AP, BD+C

Collaborative Design Approach

Since co-founding Studio Luz Architects in Boston 22 years ago, Hansy has embraced a collaborative design approach rooted in explorations of culture, identity, and community.


Hansy is a LEED Accredited Professional, NCARB certified, and a registered architect in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Tennessee, and Rhode Island. Since 1993, Hansy has also been a member of the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA).

Professor Emerita

Hansy provides her students with impactful instruction grounded in design excellence and social responsibility. In addition to her Professor Emerita position at RISD, she’s also held teaching appointments at Cornell, MIT, Harvard, and Northeastern.

Since co-founding Studio Luz Architects in Boston, Massachusetts 22 years ago, Hansy has embraced a collaborative design approach rooted in explorations of culture, identity, and community. Hansy is a licensed architect, urban designer and LEED Accredited Professional. She has over 20 years of design and construction experience in new construction and renovation for institutional, commercial and residential clients. Under her leadership, Studio Luz’s designs have been widely recognized, receiving national and international honors including the Architectural Record Design Vanguard Award, a Progressive Architecture Award, multiple AIA Design Awards, the Architectural League of New York’s Young Architect’s Award, and the Chicago Athenaeum’s American Architecture Award.

As Professor Emerita of Architecture at Rhode Island School of Design, she has taught students what she pursues at Studio Luz: an exploration of how design can foster resiliency, sustainability, and equity in communities typically excluded from the architectural process. Hansy, the author of Where Are the Utopian Visionaries? Architecture of Social Exchange, has also taught at Harvard, Cornell, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Northeastern University.

Hansy’s current professional appointments include service on the City of Boston Zoning Board of Appeals, the Development Advisory Committee for the Woodbourne Neighborhood Association, and the editorial board of the CriticalProductive Journal. Hansy is a co-founder of BR-A-CE: Building Research–Architecture–Community Exchange, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization founded by artists and designers to create new community spaces that engage social, economic, and cultural issues facing communities around the world.   

The Boston Business Journal and El Planeta highlighted Hansy as one of 20 Hispanic executives making a difference in Boston and in 2021. In 2021, Hansy was awarded the Women in Design Award of Excellence by the Boston Society for Architecture.  Currently she is the Vice President/President-Elect for the Boston Society for Architecture.

Originally from Barranquilla, Colombia, Hansy is a graduate of Cornell University and the Harvard Graduate School of Design. When not at her desk, you can find Hansy, who describes herself as a creative and activist, working on her pull ups, being a parent, a community activist or hanging out with family and friends.