Mechanical Engineer – Seattle or Pittsburgh

NK Architects seeks a Mechanical Engineer with Low Energy Building Systems experience to join our team for the integrated design and delivery of high-performance projects.

As our Low Energy Building Systems Engineer you will touch every project in the firm, and will be working daily with a team of other designers dedicated to creating net-zero-ready buildings. You will have the opportunity to grow our Mechanical Engineering Practice in the Pacific NW (Seattle office) and in the Mid-Atlantic regions (Pittsburgh office). The atmosphere is energetic, creative, and collaborative, where new ideas become reality.

Generally, the focus of this job is on achieving results which are aligned with the larger picture of the organization and its strategic goals. Initiative, coupled with a sense of competitive drive, and the ability to stay focused on results despite changing conditions, is the key to achieving the performance objectives of this job. The work involves innovation and creativity in generating ideas for quick response. Decision-making is focused on implementing practical, timely solutions.

The job requires getting things done quickly and handling a variety of activities. Self-assurance, and the confidence to purposely drive toward results while constantly problem-solving and engaging the commitment of others is needed. A leadership style that is firm and goal oriented, and yet motivates, trains, and engages others in an enthusiastic way is important. The emphasis on building rapport and relationships with individuals and groups requires an outgoing, poised and persuasive communication style.


  • Bachelors or Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering, required.
  • Minimum 7 years of experience, required.
  • Licensed in one or more jurisdictions, required, with a Washington State License, preferred.
  • Energy modeling with the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) required, and additionally with the WUFI-Passive building modeling software preferred.
  • Mixed-use, mid-rise, urban infill project experience, required.
  • Energy modeling to include DOE2, eQuest, Energy Pro and IES VE modeling software, preferred.
  • Design and modeling of Low Energy Heat and Energy Recovery Ventilation systems.
  • Design and modeling of Low Energy Domestic Hot Water delivery systems.
  • Design and specification of integrated building systems that deliver very low life cycle cost results and are simple to operate.
  • Energy modeling that meets LEED and Built Green criteria preferred.
  • Understanding of electrical control systems required, and ability to design and specify electrical control and monitoring systems preferred.
  • Experience managing engineering document production (in CAD or Revit) by others.


Seattle, WA (Pioneer Sq.) or Pittsburgh, PA. (East Liberty). Some travel required.

Compensation is commensurate with experience. Benefits include medical, transit, 401k, general and Passivhaus training, and flexible schedules. Email resumes and portfolio to the Business Manager at Nicholson Kovalchick Architects to Clearly identify the position for which you are applying.

Company Overview

Nicholson Kovalchick (NK) Architects is on a mission to fundamentally transform the way that high performing buildings are developed and built. Buildings are currently the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the US, but science-based building design can change that. Today we can build healthy zero carbon buildings that make economic sense. That’s why NK is dedicated to climate action, building by building. Headquartered in downtown Seattle (in the historic Pioneer Square district) with a growing office in Pittsburgh, NK serves clients across the United States. With a creative and disruptive mindset, the firm is an internationally-recognized leader in high performance building design, employing more Certified Passive House Consultants and Designers than any other firm in the western hemisphere.

NK is growing. We are looking for talented, hard-working people who can succeed here and contribute to the success of the firm.

  • Our client’s success is our success.
  • We embrace growth and change.
  • NK supports systematic, logical thinking: the best idea wins.
  • Ownership and self-direction is highly valued.
  • Our staff remains flexible, responsive, and agile.
  • NK strives to make design better, more responsible, more livable.