AIA Recognizes Recipients of Housing Awards

Washington, DC, March 12, 2007--The American Institute of Architects (AIA) have recognized 19 recipients of the 2007 Housing Committee Awards. The AIA’s Housing Awards Program, now in its seventh year, was established to recognize the best in housing design and promote the importance of good housing as a necessity of life, a sanctuary for the human spirit, and a valuable national resource.


The 2007 jury consisted of Jury Chair, Katherine Austin, AIA; Don Carter, FAIA; Jane F. Kolleeny of Architectural Record; Lisa Stacholy, AIA; and LaVerne Williams, AIA. The award recipients were selected from a record 236 submissions. The recipients will be recognized May 3 at the AIA 2007 National Convention and Design Exposition in San Antonio.


The jury recognized projects in four award categories: One/Two Family Custom Housing, One/Two Family Production Housing, Special Housing, and Multifamily Housing.


One/Two Family Custom Housing

The One and Two Family Custom Residences award recognizes outstanding designs for custom and remodeled homes for specific client(s).


House at the Shawangunks, New Paltz, N.Y.

Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

The pristine beauty of this steeply sloped, wooded site called for simple geometry and clean, basic materials; Opening its face to the southeast, the house’s cubic volume projects from the hillside against the backdrop of the Shawangunk Ridge. A rectangular volume rises behind the cube, anchoring it to the sloping landscape and the cube’s black stained concrete foundation forms a pedestal.


“A whimsical, fun house nestled wonderfully in the trees…the simple, organized plan and details are exquisite inside and outside,” the jury said. “The house is respectful of its environment and pleasing to the eye.”


1532 House, San Francisco, Calif.

Fougeron Architecture, San Francisco, Calif.

This new 3,200 sf house includes two distinct volumes separated by an interior courtyard. The front structure has a garage at street grade and a painting studio above; the back volume is the main house, with bedrooms on the lower level, living spaces in the middle, and a master bedroom suite on the top floor. Floor-to-ceiling windows, glass floors and skylights manipulate natural light and allow it to penetrate deep into all rooms.


“A wonderful, tiny, narrow home that fits perfectly into the sloped site, the house has a street presence that doesn’t overpower anything on either side. The plazas, balconies, and courtyards are very inventive uses of a limited space,” jury members said.


Loblolly House, Taylors Island, Md.

Kieran-Timberlake Associates LLP, Philadelphia, PA

Positioned between a dense grove of loblolly pines and a lush foreground of salt meadow cordgrass and the bay, the architecture is formed about and within the elements of trees, tall grasses, the sea, the horizon, the sky, and the western sun that define the place of the house.


“Really innovative prefabricated home using local materials which can be dismantled and put back together easily …The design is quite remarkable and unique with its exterior façade and beautiful location. A lot of work was put into the facades and how it would respond to the light,” said jury members.


Tye River Cabin, Skykomish, Wash.

Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects, Seattle, Wash.

The Tye River Cabin is essentially a wooden tent/retreat on a platform that opens to the forest and the river. The materials were allowed to weather in keeping with the natural tone of the site.


This project is a simple, elegant solution to having shelter but remaining one with nature…The modest size makes you feel like you’re in the forest with no boundaries. The house is a pure statement that is not over powering…the colors and details are lovely,” said jury members.


Delta Shelter, Mazama, Wash.

Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects, Seattle, Wash.

This project is a 40-acre site restoration and planning of a 100-year-old horse ranch located on a flood plain. Due to the flood plain, the project sits on stilts, which also lets it have minimum impact on the land. It is a little house on a big landscape with pre-fabricated metal frame, shutters, stairs and “gizmo” to mitigate construction site activity.


The natural materials blend beautifully with the context in terms of materials and volume…Elevated position respects the flood plane and ensures durability,” Jury members said. “This project is gorgeous and seems in harmony with the site”


A Ranch House in the San Juan Mountains, Telluride, Colo.

Michael Shepherd Architect AIA, Telluride, Colo.

The remoteness, vast openness, and topographical qualities solicit a strong connection to the land. Conceptually the design of this house is an attempt to synthesize regional vernacular and the more universal qualities of modernism. Recycled oaks and Douglas fir were used for interior flooring, doors, and cabinet work. Solar power and propane are the primary energy sources.


The jury said, “The project is wonderfully understated; the views and light are just gorgeous. It is very respectful of ranch tradition of architecture and works with the vernacular of that area...Timeless…Serene!”


One/Two Family Production Housing

The One and Two Family Production Homes award will recognize excellent design of homes built for the speculative market.


Danielson Grove, Kirkland, Wash.

Ross Chapin Architects, Langley, Wash.

This project was developed to demonstrate the market for detached housing alternatives for small households and was built to meet the 4-Star rating of the Master Builders Association BUILT GREEN program. Each home is on a private lot facing a garden courtyard. Residents share a Commons Building, a place for potlucks, family gatherings, and meetings.


“Lots of texture and detail and works well in the context of its environment; the central courtyard with community building is a great organizing feature…beautiful…green,” the jury said.


The 505, Houston, Texas

Collaborative Designworks, Houston, Texas

Natural cross-ventilation, exceptional day-lighting, permeable ground coverings, stack-vented rain-screens on the East & West facades, radiant barrier roofing, recycled / sustainable materials & finishes, tank-less water heaters, and high efficiency appliances & equipment all combine to give the project an environmentally responsible footprint.


“Really liked the street frontage; it respected the character of the neighborhood. This was a clever plan, handled well,” said jury members. “Elegant use of materials that gives richness to the structure, all within the low budget”.


Special Housing

The Special Housing award recognizes outstanding design of housing that meets the unique needs of other specialized housing types such as single room occupancy residences (SROs), independent living for the disabled, residential rehabilitation programs, domestic violence shelters, and other special housing.


The DESIGNhabitat 2 House, Greensboro, Ala.

The DESIGNhabitat 2 Studio School of Architecture, Auburn University, David W. Hinson, AIA, Auburn, Ala.

This home is the first designed for Habitat for Humanity to integrate high design quality goals, climate-appropriate design features and energy performance with the modular construction process and offers valuable lessons and perspectives for future initiates to integrate modular construction and affordable housing development.


“Well thought out spatial organization and environmental factors included for really efficient energy consumption. Organization of the house is simple and really responds to its environment…wonderful…sophisticated simplicity,” the jury said.


The Plaza Apartments, San Francisco, CA

Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects & Paulett Taggart Architects in Association, San Francisco, CA

Its ground floor commercial space, theater entrance, and residential courtyard enhance the streetscape and the colorful exterior signals a new direction for the neighborhood. Over 100 new mini-studio apartments provide permanent housing with on-site mental/physical health services for chronically homeless people.


This project has taken a wonderfully whimsical approach to the façade that relates to the existing neighborhood. City of San Francisco is actively trying to alleviate the homeless situation and this project has the potential to change the situation,” said jury members.


Patrolia Loft, Boston, MA

Ruhl Walker Architects, Boston, MA

This interior fit-out of an existing concrete-shell apartment for a wheelchair-bound user starts with the proposition that “Accessible Design” should first and foremost be good design. Specific accommodations for his mobility limitations are incorporated honestly; without unnecessary concealment and also without becoming unattractive afterthoughts or distractions.


“Great use of materials which goes beyond universal space… Wonderfully organized… the bathroom is really elegant and functional,” jury members said.


Shirley Bridge Bungalows, Seattle, Wash.

Ron Wright and Associates / Architects, PS, Seattle, Wash.

The project responds to the critical shortage of affordable, appropriate housing for people disabled with AIDS who are low-income and is publicly funded via HUD Section 811 funding, along with other public and private sources. The six colorful cottages were organized around a central common space to foster interaction between residents.

A forced-air heating system was also provided to increase ventilation and air quality.


This small housing development is very serene, comforting and welcoming…a real improvement to the neighborhood and a good new neighbor for the community,” said jury members.


Regional Homeless Center, Los Angeles, CA

Jeffrey M. Kalban & Associates Architecture, Inc., Los Angeles, CA

This project was a major renovation of an abandoned 1960’s 3-story office building that was originally built for a liquor company, to a multifaceted 40,000 sq. ft. regional Homeless Center. Vibrant colors and playful uplifting forms were used to create a facility that evokes a positive, non-institutional, image and delivers a sense of hope and possibility to its users.


This is an amazing transformation of a fairly brutal building which enhances its environment and makes it a welcome addition to the neighborhood,” jury members said. “The ground floor is beautifully detailed and the organization is terrific.”


Multifamily Housing

The Multifamily Housing award recognizes outstanding multifamily housing design. Both high- and low-density projects for public and private clients were considered. In addition to architectural design features, the jury assessed the integration of the building(s) into their context, including open and recreational space, transportation options and features that contribute to livable communities.


High Point, Seattle, Wash.

Mithun, Seattle, Wash.

The 120-acre project replaces 716 subsidized housing units erected after World War II with 1600 units designed in a fresh take on traditional residential forms. Fifty percent of the new homes are designated for low-income residents, with the remaining market value homes built by private sector builders. The neighborhood integrates a variety of incomes, ethnicities and family structures.


The architecture was done in a public way... love the sense of community this project creates while still allowing individuality,” said the jury. “The community garden and architecture is very much in context with Seattle.”


1247 Wisconsin, Washington DC

McInturff Architects, Bethesda, Md.

Situated on historic Georgetown's main shopping street, this project restores two mid-19th century commercial/residential buildings and fills the remaining site behind them with additional retail space on the street level. Above this new space, and in the upper levels of the historic buildings, six luxury residential units create a little rooftop village floating above the bustle of the city.


“Absolutely love it! A sensitive and gorgeous way to use the space…The project is clever and respectful of the existing fabric of the city… beautifully detailed,” said jury members.


156 West Superior Condominiums, Chicago, Illinois

The Miller/Hull Partnership, LLP, Seattle, Washington

The steel frames support cantilevered decks for outdoor entertaining in each unit and a large common roof deck provides stunning views of downtown Chicago for all the residents. The building is meant to invest an image of structural architecture, conveying a sense of economy, efficiency, discipline and order, essential characteristics of Chicago’s steel and glass architectural history.


“It is nice how the project fits in the context, but not in a scale that feels overwhelming. The building is beautifully sited on narrow constricted site,” said jury members.


The Union, San Diego, CA

Jonathan Segal, FAIA, San Diego, CA

The architect took a sustainable approach and acting as owner/developer/contractor decided to adaptively reuse the old textile manufactures union hall as a fully sustainable edifice with two affordable live work lofts and his own architectural office. The homes have significant individual presence on the street and substantial private outdoor space connected to the interiors by an abundance of glazing.


“Very modern, green design on the edge of a transitional neighborhood that invigorates the neighborhood…Two story volumes with affordable units,” jury members said.


Bridgeton Hope VI, Bridgeton, N.J.

Torti Gallas and Partners, Silver Spring, Md.

Rather than rebuilding on the existing public housing site, the new housing knits into the historic fabric, filling vacant lots and blocks. The existing site was restored as riverside parkland reconnecting the city to the Cohansey. Porches, cornices, surrounds, siding, and trim, all painted with a varied historic palette, allow the houses to blend with the neighborhood context.


“Absolutely appropriate and wonderful…sensitively detailed. The site plan is very much contextual to the rest of the city,” said jury members. “Transforms the neighborhood back to what it probably was”


Salishan Neighborhood Revitalization, c/o Tacoma Housing Authority, Tacoma, Wash.

Torti Gallas & Partners, Inc., Silver Spring, Md.

This project is a H.O.P.E. VI Grant with the goal of creating a livable, vibrant community and restoring/protecting the natural resources of the neighborhood, particularly Swan Creek. The architects were able to create a connective, eco-friendly, pedestrian-friendly neighborhood through the integration of a variety of parks, paths, and swales.


The jury said of this project, “Takes an existing temporary housing for shipyard workers and transforms it to multi-generational and multi-ethnic population…The project is warm and has a sense of permanence.”

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