Page N1.2 . 21 February 2007                     
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    AIA Honor Awards 2007

    continued

    In another lab, the Meinel Optical Science Research Building, in Tucson, Arizona, by richärd + bauer architecture, the symbolism is an abstraction of a darkroom.

    Daylight enters through apertures in the walls of concrete — sheathed in a copper alloy treated to a reddened bronze — modulating the spaces within. The building is organized around "blind" and "seeing" spaces, with light-sensitive research functions organized along the southern side and windowed office and support spaces open to daylight to the north.

    The awards jury commented: "The shafts of light are powerful and heighten the notion of light coming into space... they allow you to see all the refracted views and tells you what is going on inside."

    The Jarvis Street Campus of Canada's National Ballet School, in Toronto, was designed by a joint venture of Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects and Goldsmith Borgal & Company Limited Architects. Just as the Meinel building played with optics, this collection of three glazed buildings plays with a dancer's performance space: the stage.

    The building's series of stacked, horizontal platforms project its programmatic functions to the city. Moreover, by preserving and integrating existing historic structures, the project sets an example for the harmonious coexistence of heritage and contemporary architecture.

    The School of Art and Art History at the University of Iowa, by Steven Holl Architects in association with Herbert Lewis Kruse Blunck Architecture is a striking cantilever over a lagoon and gives art students a visual connection to the organic geometry of nearby limestone bluffs. The jury appreciated its "remarkable structural clarity."

    Perhaps less clear, but more striking is the Dr. Theodore T. Alexander Jr. Science Center School, in Los Angeles, designed by Morphosis. The building serves as both elementary school and research facility for the University of Southern California. Libraries, labs, meeting rooms, and classrooms flank an atrium and provide access to the new north school building via a pair of bridges.

    In Phoenix, Arizona, an award winning building by Gould Evans Associates + Wendell Burnette Architects also serves a dual function of library and community center. The Palo Verde Library/ Maryvale Community Center comprise two volumes representing, respectively, the exercise of mind and body. Each volume is a top- and bottom-lit clear-span, column-free space for balanced daylight. An eight-foot band of externally shaded glass reinforces the visual connection between the buildings and the community, while keeping direct sun and heat gain from burdening the cooling system.

    The University of California, Merced Central Plant, by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill combines a three-story plant building, a thermal storage tank, and a telecommunications building. A thin band of channel glass wraps the base of the building, providing visibility and acoustical mitigation and allowing the floor to work as a light shelf. In addition to providing power, the plant also helps achieve campus sustainable design goals.

    The World Birding Center Headquarters in Mission, Texas, designed by Lake|Flato Architects creates a gateway between disturbed agricultural land and a 1,700-acre (690-hectare) native habitat preserve. The building was sited on an east-west axis to capture prevailing breezes. It incorporates efficient structural and building systems, conserves and reuses water, and returns the surrounding vegetation to its native state. The jury commented: "The building creates an outdoor space and integrates the exterior extremely successfully... this building will get even better with time as the landscape comes back."

    Two residential projects in the awards line-up are the Spencertown (New York) House by Thomas Phifer and Partners and, inspired by the Umbrella House (1953) by Paul Rudolph, the "Solar Umbrella," in Venice, California, by Pugh + Scarpa Architecture. Also receiving an architecture award is the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, a five-acre (two-hectare) landscape sculpture in Berlin by Eisenman Architects.

    Interior Awards

    Eleven projects were selected for Interior Architecture Honor Awards, representing a broad range of project types, including offices, educational spaces, and renovations. As with the architectural projects, the themes of environmental quality and metaphorical clarity prevailed.   >>>

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    Canada's National Ballet School by Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects and Goldsmith Borgal & Company Limited Architects.
    Photo: © Tom Arban Photography

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    School of Art and Art History at the University of Iowa by Steven Holl Architects and Herbert Lewis Kruse Blunck Architecture.
    Photo: © Andy Ryan

    ArchWeek Image

    Dr. Theodore T. Alexander Jr. Science Center School by Morphosis.
    Photo: © Tom Bonner

    ArchWeek Image

    Palo Verde Library/ Maryvale Community Center by Gould Evans Associates, L.C. + Wendell Burnette Architects.
    Photo: © Bill Timmerman

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    University of California, Merced Central Plant by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill.
    Photo: © Tim Griffith

    ArchWeek Image

    World Birding Center Headquarters by Lake|Flato Architects.
    Photo: © Paul Hester

    ArchWeek Image

    Spencertown House by Thomas Phifer and Partners.
    Photo: © Scott Frances

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    Solar Umbrella by Pugh + Scarpa.
    Photo: © Lawrence Scarpa

     

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