Leers Weinzapfel Receives AIA Firm Award
Washington, DC, December 8, 2006--The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Board of Directors voted for Leers Weinzapfel Associates to receive the 2007 AIA Architecture Firm Award based on its proven consistent ability to accept complex challenges and envision design of elegant distinction.
The AIA Architecture Firm Award, given annually, is the highest honor the AIA bestows on an architecture firm and recognizes a practice that consistently has produced distinguished architecture for at least 10 years.
Partners Andrea P. Leers, FAIA; Jane Weinzapfel, FAIA; Joe Pryse, AIA; and Josiah Stevenson, AIA, meld a bold and refined architecture for the public realm, including transportation and urban infrastructure, the joining of new elements to existing buildings, and athletic and campus-life facilities.
“Their commitment to the public realm and to the craft of building in dramatically complex projects represents a remarkable commitment to ingenuity, resourcefulness, and design excellence in the most extreme circumstance,” writes David B. Greenbaum, FAIA, chair of the AIA Committee on Design Firm Award Jury Task Force in his nomination letter.
Greenbaum also offers this insight from architecture critic Robert Campbell, FAIA: “Leers and Weinzapfel are architects who take as much delight in a crisply machined joint as an old-time craftsperson would take in an ornamental carving. For them, Modernism is an aesthetic idea. Their building expresses that conviction and triumphs in it.”
With a passion for material and detail exploration and desire to create meaningful social interaction, the firm develops a refined and tailor-made response to each set of project conditions. As architecture critic Robert A. Kliment, FAIA, noted, “The work appears to be driven by fundamental values, searching for expression appropriate to the program and the place, and even to the budget and the capacity of the builder.”
“Besides the exceptional quality of their portfolio, the firm of Leers Weinzapfel is remarkably generous in their support of the American architectural profession and the future of the profession,” added Edward A. Feiner, FAIA, in his letter of support.
James Steward Polshek, FAIA, focused his supportive comments on the founding partners. “It would be nice to be gender blind,” he writes, “but our social construct is not yet reconfigured to allow that luxury. The fact is that for a woman-owned firm to succeed as spectacularly as Leers Weinzapfel has required persistence, diligence, and inventiveness.”
The firm has garnered more than 40 national and regional design awards, including:
• Blue Hill Avenue Youth Development Center, Boston
• Cambridge School of Weston Mugar Center for the Performing Arts, Weston, Mass.
• Harvard University Science Center Expansion, Cambridge, Mass.
• MIT School of Architecture and Planning, Cambridge, Mass.
• Operations Control Center, Boston
• U.S. District Courthouse, Worcester, Mass.
• University of Pennsylvania Gateway Building, Philadelphia
Leers Weinzapfel and Associates also received letters of support from Mack Scogin, AIA, and Adèle Naudé Santos, FAIA. The award will be presented at the American Architectural Foundation Accent on Architecture Gala February 9, 2007, at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. Previous recipients include Moore Ruble Yudell (2006), Muphy/Jahn (2005), and Lake/Flato Architects (2004).
Related Topics:The American Institute of Architects