Award-Winning Portland Architectural Designer and Construction Firm Merge 

Juniper Design+Build Takes Collaborative Approach to Integrate the Building Design Process


Portland, ME, April 12, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- After 15 years of collaborating on building and renovation projects, an architectural designer and a builder have merged their Peaks Island firms to launch a majority woman-owned design-build company. Heather Thompson, owner of Thompson Johnson Woodworks (TJW), and Rachel Conly, of Rachel Conly Design, have joined with TJW lead carpenter and building-science savant, Mark Pollard. These co-founders will announce the launch of Juniper Design+Build in Portland, Maine on April 13, 2022.

“The design-build concept leans heavily on collaboration between the client, designer and builder,” explained Co-Founder and Design Director, Rachel Conly. “Our firms have worked together with an integrated design process for 15 years, which means from day one, we are working collaboratively to help inform design, construction, materials and pricing. This is not the traditional competitive bidding process that most building projects go through and we believe it leads to better communication, truth in pricing and beautiful design solutions.”

For Juniper, the timing was right to realize their dream of formalizing a partnership. Juniper was created from a special mindset. Co-Founder and General Manager, Heather Thompson explained, “Sometimes the stars align, and you just know it.” And some of those stars included growing recognition of their projects, an influx of business due, in part, to the pandemic, and the ability to assemble a 15-employee team from people they've trusted for years. 

"We knew if we joined forces, something really special would come of it. We all hold strong convictions about the importance of moving the building industry towards sustainability and of creating great employee culture," said Thompson.

About Juniper Design+Build Juniper Design+Build is a majority woman-owned company created out of the 2022 union of Thompson Johnson Woodworks (TJW) and Rachel Conly Design after 15 years of working collaboratively on projects along the coast of Maine. The three co-founders are TJW’s Heather Thompson, TJW’s master builder and building science savant Mark Pollard, and AIA award-winning architectural designer Rachel Conly.  The founders, along with their 15 employees, are united by a shared passion to leave a legacy that protects the earth and inspires future generations of Mainers. Their unique process utilizes integrated design from day one, resulting in streamlined communications, truth in pricing and better design solutions for their clients. Their work is regularly featured in architectural and building trade publications for its exceptional design and forward-looking approach to energy-efficient construction and carbon mitigation. For more information: 


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