UNBUILT: Certificate of Merit

The Motor Room Food Hub at Mill 19
Architecture Firm: AE7
Project Team: Philip Wilkinson, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP; Kendall Curtis, NCIDQ; Jaron Popko; Alex Jaskowiak; Teresa Bucco, AIA; Nathan Lutz; Jeff Ortman; Brian Kish, RA
Client: RIDC
Photographer: Alex Jaskowiak

The design for the Motor Room Food Hub, to be located in Mill 19, transforms the former mill’s central motor room into a 17,800-square-foot food hub. The Hub incorporates collaborative flex space, nine food tenants, and a central bar. The design embraces the aweinspiring existing steel structures to provide expansive open spaces with gathering zones, all molded to reflect and enhance its surroundings. This forward-looking design champions redevelopment that both honors history and creates an alluring destination for innovative industries rooted in Pittsburgh’s past.

JURY COMMENTS: “This is an inspiring project and we particularly liked it as an example for future development and reuse within industrial structures.”

“The designer clearly makes a connection to the history of the space. The screen is beautiful and has great proportion with the building.”


SMALL: Honor Award

Liberian Self-sustaining Orphan Village
Architecture Firm: 
Protean Design Collaborative
Project Team: Joshua Lee, AIA, Gamelee Cyrus, Leila Srinivasan
General Contractor: Well Done Construction, Foday Wou Kondoh
Contractor of Compressed Earth Block Buildings: For the Lamb, Jesse Phillips
Client: Psalms 82:3 Mission, Inc.
Photographer: Project Team

Liberia has recently endured a 14-year civil war and was the epicenter of the 2014-2016 Ebola outbreak. These events resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths, national economic collapse, and nearly total destruction of the country’s infrastructure systems. It is also estimated that there are currently more than 100,000 orphaned children in Liberia.

Our team of American and Liberian architects was asked by a non-profit to design an off-grid, resilient, safe, and affordable prototype that could be easily adapted as the Orphan Village grows to include housing, administrative offices, a health clinic, a school, and a farm. We tested a variety of passive strategies and adapted them to the specific program, climate, society, materials, and methods of construction currently available in rural Liberia. The resulting prototype features an elongated plan with frequent wind scoops and jalousie windows, moveable interior partitions, ventilated high albedo metal roofs, and a campus plan that optimizes natural ventilation. The prototype has been successfully adapted and is being copied in the area, creating a more sustainable vernacular for rural Liberia.

JURY COMMENTS: “This is architecture that brings together function, social purpose and deep environmental considerations – and it does all three well. We appreciate the restrained elements of the project and how flexible it is – allowing it to evolve with the needs of the orphanage. We were also impressed with the level of coordination with the surrounding community, who aided in construction with building blocks being formed out of local materials.”


MEDIUM: Certificate of Merit

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Library of Accessible Media For Pennsylvanians
Architecture Firm:
 GBBN
Project Team: Matt Plecity, AIA, ASLA; Phyllis Kim , RA; Amanda Markovic, AIA; Anne Chen, AIA, LEED AP
Contractor: Waller Construction, Lou Waller
Owner’s Rep: Imperial Construction Services, Ken Faux
MEP Engineer: WNA Engineering, Greg Torchia
Civil Engineer: Sci-Tek Consultants, Jack Harding
Structural Engineer: WBCM, Shawn Graham
Client: Carnegie of Library Pittsburgh
Photographer: Ed Massery

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s Library of Accessible Media for Pennsylvanians is immensely valuable to its community of users who cannot access print media. Many who initially come for its services become volunteers and view it as a second home. Developed with that community, the design fosters comfort and autonomy in a space where staff once led patrons from place to place. Formerly bricked-up windows now hold insulated glass, enhancing the building’s character, dampening street noise (for audiobook users), and flooding the space with natural light. Playful, braille supergraphics spell out the library’s purpose and value for the larger public.

A recessed entry creates a safe, sheltered place to pause before stepping onto the narrow sidewalks of a busy street. The bold red that marks the entry also marks perimeters within, guiding partially-sighted patrons to their destination. Wayfinding is reinforced by differentiated tactile flooring. The interior is simple. The renovation removes visual clutter, exposes the building’s elegant, board-formed concrete structure, and inserts roomy, milled-wood booths. Warming the concrete interior, these booths accommodate service animals and wheelchairs.

JURY COMMENTS: “The project has clear exterior interventions, beautiful restoration, and a thoughtful street relationship. We love the corrals in the windows, the selective use of color, and the symmetry that comes from the exterior.”


MEDIUM: Certificate of Merit

Contemporary Craft
Architecture Firm: 
GBBN
Project Team: Mick McNutt, AIA; Melanie Ngami, RA; Anne Chen, AIA
Contractor: Jendoco Construction Coporation, Michael Kuhn
Structural Engineer: WBCM, Mike Wuerthele
MEP Engineer: WNA, Jason Heilman
Client: Contemporary Craft
Photographer: Ed Massery

Crafting Community: For over 30 years, Contemporary Craft has provided free access to high quality arts and creative experiences for all from a rented space in Pittsburgh’s Strip District. So, when the organization sought to secure its future by purchasing a new home in Lawrenceville, it was essential that the new building maintain its identity as a friendly, dynamic space, where diverse people can gather.

Transforming a modest, previously industrial concrete box into a showcase for Contemporary Craft’s exhibition, education, and retail programming, the design reflects the organization’s mission by demonstrating the joy and power of craft in the building itself.

JURY COMMENTS: “This is a great example of thoroughly reviving a blighted building with a few well-placed architectural moves and thoughtful interior choices. We particularly like the use of texture and tasteful palette that allows the art to shine.”


MEDIUM: Certificate of Merit

Kingfly Spirits
Architecture Firm: 
Margittai Architects
Project Team: Eric Nicklaus
General Contractor: MM Marra Construction
MEP Engineer: Iams Consulting
Client: Port of Pittsburgh
Photographer: Ed Massery

Built in 1907, the 10,000 sf structure was originally built as a horse stable on land leased from the estate of Mary Schenley. This building, which had served several functions over the years, including a taxi depot and consignment store, had little to no infrastructure. The new owner imagined a micro-distillery with a warm and welcoming interior that served as an amenity for Strip District neighbors and a destination for visitors.

The Design Challenge was to:
– Create a fully functioning micro-distillery, that met the LCB of PA’s requirements, out of an early 20th Century livery.
– Introduce the building code required MEP systems and life-safety components without compromising the historic nature of the building.
– Thoughtfully incorporate accessibility into the design without adding unsightly elements such as ramps with handrails.
– Save an artifact from Pittsburgh’s industrial past from being demolished and replaced as has been the recent trend.

JURY COMMENTS: “This is a sensitive and attractive adaptive reuse that tells a comprehensive story. The exterior is beautiful and clear – it is a perfect example of less is more.”


MEDIUM: Honor Award

Susan Hirt Hagen Center for Community Outreach, Research, & Evaluation
Architecture Firm: 
GBBN
Project Team: Matt Plecity, AIA, ASLA; Stephen Mrdjenovich, AIA, CPHC; Mark Lee, AIA, LEED AP; Daniel Luegering, AIA; Melanie Ngami, RA; Anne Chen, AIA, LEED AP
Contractor: EE Austin, Ken Sherwin
MEP Engineer: Tower Engineering, Tom Valerio
Civil Engineer: Urban Engineers, Tim Polaski
Structural Engineer: WBCM, Mike Wuerthele
Landscape: Merritt Chase, Chris Merritt
Sustainability Consultant: evolveEA, Marc Mondor
Client: Penn State Behrend
Photographer: Brad Feinknopf

The oldest brick structure in the area, once a link along the underground railroad, the Federal House at Penn State Behrend is gracefully preserved and repurposed by an expansive addition. A light and spacious modern barn slips into the steeply graded site—linking to the restored structure by way of an elegant, glass bridge—to preserve and elevate the historically significant building. Large, glass walls contrast with the solidity of the Federal House; dark gray zinc roof panels echo the gabled roof of the historic building. A warm wood wrap softens the building and marks its entrance, welcoming its visitors.

The project provides a new offices, classrooms, and event space for the Susan Hirt Hagen Center for Community Outreach, Research, and Evaluation (CORE). In a county where one in three children under five live in poverty, CORE fosters positive youth development and a culture of hope through mentoring and education programs. Creating space of inclusion and security, the design communicates to its young visitors that they are valued.

JURY COMMENTS: “The Center has a beautiful, clear concept and execution, showing a dynamic combination of restraint and expression. The new addition and choice of materials succeed in revitalizing the immediate area while maintaining an appropriate and respectful relationship with the existing Federal Style structure.”


LARGE: Honor Award

Crystal Clinic Orthopedic Center
Firm: 
IKM Architecture
Project Team: Tami Greene, AIA, NCARB; Melanie Como Harris, AIA, WELL AP, LEED AP; Tiffany Peter, AIA; Sydney McDonough, Associate IIDA
Contractor: Turner Construction, Jason Jones
Design Partner, MEP Engineer, Structural Engineer: HGA, Paul Widlarz
Technology Design: Karpinski Engineering, James Dudt
Civil Engineer, Landscape Architect: Environmental Design Group, LLC, Travis Mathews
Medical Equipment Planner: Walsh Consulting Group, Inc., Jim Melia
Commissioning Agent: Scheeser Buckley Mayfield, Jim Kulick
Owner’s Representative: Somerset, Stephen Dobias
Client: Crystal Clinic
Photographer: Kendall McCaugherty Hall + Merrik Photographers

Crystal Clinic Orthopaedic Center in Fairlawn, OH, is more than just a hospital. It is a destination for patients from across the country in need of specialized orthopedic care and rehabilitation. Visitors are greeted with valet service upon arrival, liberating them from the worries of car and baggage. A warm palette of chocolate, brass, and deep blue embraces patient and family as they move through the welcome lobby. Public lounges are situated next to windows, allowing light and view to distract from the worries of surgery. Patient rooms benefit from full glass at their perimeter and are oriented so that privacy of each patient can be respected while focusing on the beauty of the surrounding landscape. Touches of elegance like sliding doors and custom lights emphasize patient comfort. Activities of daily living are integrated into patient recovery, facilitating a smooth return to normal life.

JURY COMMENTS: “This is elegant, timeless architecture. It is refreshing in that it is a sophisticated design with well-considered detailing, and also reflects an eye to editing so the strongest elements really shine. The designers took a simple box and addressed each aspect of it in detail, like where bricks patterns and window depths vary based on building orientation.”

The interior spaces go against the sterile, cold environments commonly associated with medical facilities. Instead, it feels like a temporary residence that is comfortable and warm with a considered human scale.”


LARGE: Honor Award

The Industrialist
Firm: 
Desmone
Project Team: Andre Clark, AIA; Ryan Croyle, AIA; Eric Booth, AIA; Katelyn Walsh, AIA; Chip Desmone, AIA; Jen Bee, AIA
General Contractor: PJ Dick, Justin Hough
MEP Engineers: Allen and Shariff, Dave Price
Structural Engineer: Atlantic Engineering Services, Angelo Maoine
Civil Engineer: Gateway Engineers, Sean Donnelly
Interior Design: Stonehill Taylor, Abby Bullard
Client: Urban Pittsburgh Downtown Hotel Company, LLC
Photographer: Denmarsh Studios

The Industrialist is an adaptive re-use of an existing iconic 18 story Pittsburgh landmark in the heart of Pittsburgh’s Downtown for a boutique hotel. Originally built in 1902 by Pittsburgh architect Frederick Osterling, the building had been underutilized in recent decades as commercial office space but was rich with a meticulously detailed facade and lush interior finishes in many areas of the building. The design team took great care in retaining the existing historic ornamentation, detailing, and materials, while providing repair and rehabilitation where required to maintain the building’s existing charm. Strategic full re-design of the mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems minimized interruption of views and connections to the historic aspects of the building while greatly improving the buildings energy consumption. The new hotel and the ground floor restaurant re-activates the urban streetscape and allows guests to enjoy walking to events at nearby Pittsburgh venues. The 124 room hotel honors the past and tells the story of the modern Industrialists who are shaping Pittsburgh into what it is today.

JURY COMMENTS: “This is a gorgeous preservation and restoration with highly skilled craftsmanship. The interiors are tasteful and sophisticated and add the right amount of layering, while the scale of the interiors is appropriate to the weightiness of the historic building. The interiors will be timeless like the building.”


LARGE: Honor Award 

Kent State University, Design Innovation Hub
Firm: 
Bohlin Cywinski Jackson
Project Team: Michael Maiese, AIA; William Loose, AIA; Joshua Keller, RA; Kent Suhrbier, AIA; Bill James; Xueping Li; Mason Limke; Adam Kor; Robert Aumer, RA; Caitlin Delach, RA
Contractor: Gilbane, Christopher Kowalczyk
Associate Architect: Domokur Architects, Michael Tabeling
Landscape Architect: Nelson Byrd Woltz, Jeffrey Aten
Structural Engineer: Barber & Hoffman, Brad Boomer
Landscape Architect of Record: Knight & Stolar, Kathleen Jankowski
MEP Engineer: Scheeser Buckley Mayfield, LLC, Chad Montgomery
Civil Engineer: Resource International, Inc., Robert LaDuke, PE
Acoustical Engineering: Babich Acoustics, Jeffrey Babich
Commercial Kitchen Planning: Hammer Design Associates, Gary Hammer
LEED Design and Certification: Atelier Ten, Nico Kienzl
Client: Kent State University
Photographer: Ed Massery

Kent State’s Design Innovation Initiative encourages students across disciplines to converge, explore, and engage with a range of technologies, with an eye toward real world applications. The University had identified dispersed tools and resources across its campuses, but was missing a central “owned by all, shared by all” environment. Through an extensive adaptive reuse of the 1972 School of Art building at the center of campus, we created the Design Innovation Hub (DI Hub). The 78,000 square-foot makerspace retains the cellular geometry, expressive spirit, and sense of interconnectedness of the original building to create light-filled classrooms, labs, and studios. Strategic re-use of the building capitalized on its prominent location to create a highly visible, inviting home. Unique to the collegiate makerspace typology, the DI Hub includes a significant dining component, bringing food service and making under one roof and highlighting making as a core feature of the university’s academic framework.

JURY COMMENTS: “This renovated design is tastefully restrained and refined, especially considering its size.”

“The fluidity of the overall massing allows for a well-considered pathway for students, and honors the 1970 architecture while bringing it into the now. It has very clear organization for such a large building and thoughtful coordination with all the building systems. We love the section studies and the natural light is fantastic!”


Social Impact in Design Award

August Wilson House
Firm: 
Pfaffmann + Associates
Project Team: Robert Pfaffmann, FAIA; Jimmy DeCecco, AIA; Vivian Walker; Jeff Slack, Historic Preservation, AICP; Dori Tompa, RA; Taylor Noakes, Historian
General Contractor: A. Martini Construction, Angelo Martini – General Contractor
MEP Engineer: Iams Consulting, Jon Iams
Structural Engineer: Atlantic Engineering, Bob Bertocchi
Civil Engineer: Common Ground, Bernie Lamm
Landscape Design: Hood Studio, Walter Hood
Landscape Architect of Record: Studio for Spatial Practice, Jen Gallagher
Materials Conservator: Fine Art Conservation, Chantal Bernicky
Client: Daisy Wilson Artist Community
Photographer: Ed Massery

The parti or organizing principle of the design was driven creating an artists community while preserving the character defining features of the historic houses. The solution resulted in four studios, three galleries and historic apartment at the rear. The architect and consultants developed an interpretive concept that allows the visitor to experience the house as a palimpsest (or layers) of history and occupancy.

The House is unique in that it is both a historic place and a fictional setting for August Wilson’s Seven Guitars, which added another unique layer of complexity. The new addition to the west of the historic houses consists of all modern support services (fire stair, elevator, toilets, green room). This creates new contemporary spaces overlooking August Wilson’s neighborhood. All spaces were made accessible despite many variations in floors. The structure is actually two houses: an 1840’s era house and an 1890’s Storefront with apartment above.

JURY COMMENTS: “This project hit all the marks for social impact – not an easy task. It preserves a cultural legacy while also being a catalyst for leading change. It is the best example of ‘living history’ while serving as a community gathering place and creative space for now and the future. There is a compelling story here on many levels.”


Social Impact in Design Award

Liberian Self-sustaining Orphan Village
Architecture Firm: 
Protean Design Collaborative
Project Team: Johsua Lee, AIA, Gamelee Cyrus, Leila Srinivasan
General Contractor: Well Done Construction, Foday Wou Kondoh
Contractor of Compressed Earth Block Buildings: For the Lamb, Jesse Phillips
Client: Psalms 82:3 Mission, Inc.
Photographer: Project Team

Liberia has recently endured a 14-year civil war and was the epicenter of the 2014-2016 Ebola outbreak. These events resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths, national economic collapse, and nearly total destruction of the country’s infrastructure systems. It is also estimated that there are currently more than 100,000 orphaned children in Liberia.

Our team of American and Liberian architects was asked by a non-profit to design an off-grid, resilient, safe, and affordable prototype that could be easily adapted as the Orphan Village grows to include housing, administrative offices, a health clinic, a school, and a farm. We tested a variety of passive strategies and adapted them to the specific program, climate, society, materials, and methods of construction currently available in rural Liberia. The resulting prototype features an elongated plan with frequent wind scoops and jalousie windows, moveable interior partitions, ventilated high albedo metal roofs, and a campus plan that optimizes natural ventilation. The prototype has been successfully adapted and is being copied in the area, creating a more sustainable vernacular for rural Liberia.

JURY COMMENTS: “This is architecture that brings together function, social purpose and deep environmental considerations – and it does all three well. We appreciate the restrained elements of the project and how flexible it is – allowing it to evolve with the needs of the orphanage. We were also impressed with the level of coordination with the surrounding community, who aided in construction with building blocks being formed out of local materials.”


Social Impact in Design Award

Second Harvest Community Thrift Store
Firm: 
Rothschild Doyno Collaborative
Project Team: Carolyn Kerr; Dan Tse; Eli Gutierrez; Elizabeth Laman; Joe Wahy; Katie Johnson; Kim Rullo; Michael Sweterlitsch; Michael Gwin, AIA; Nickie Cheung, AIA, NOMA; Nick Rebeck, AIA; Rebecca Baierwick; Robert Tuñón, AIA, NOMA
Site Contractor: Eisler Landscapes, Eric French
Solar Installer: EIS Solar, Ian Smith
MEP Engineer: WNA Engineering, Inc., Greg Torchia
Structural Engineer: Reliable Structural Engineers, LLC, Bob Mason
Glass Mosaic, Art Workshops: Sarah Cohen Design, Sarah Cohen
Custom Metal Railing and Exterior Signage: Temper and Grit, Nicholas Volpe
Custom Interior Signage: Huffalo; Lindsay Huff
Reclaimed Interior Doors: Doors Unhinged, Andrew Ellsworth
Client: Second Harvest Community Thrift Store
Photographer: Joe Wahy, Maya Tuttle/Mayabee Photography, and Robert Tuñón

In the wake of a great loss for Sharpsburg, neighbors came together to respond to the closing of the community’s beloved thrift store. The former thrift store was not only an essential access point to affordable goods for the community’s residents, but it was also a place where locals frequented to meet one another. Concerned community members responded by forming a new organization, purchasing a property, and undertaking a major renovation to transform the existing building into a site that ensured dignity in the second-hand goods retail experience. The pandemic struck but it only deepened the community’s commitment to bringing a welcoming space that served the essential needs of all Sharpsburg’s residents. The resulting place is a signal of a regenerating community building the ground work for a sustainable vision and vibrant hopeful future.

JURY COMMENTS: “We really appreciate the precedent this project sets – that there can be so much life given back to a type of functional building we see all over the country. We also appreciated the resonance of showing pride in reuse as an ethos of the thrift store, but also an ethos of the building. This is an example of how design provides dignity and community.”


PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARD WINNER

Hillview Elementary School Additions and Alterations
Firm: 
DRAW Collective
Project Team: Mark Scheller, AIA; Jeremy Beatty, AIA; Tricia Monaco, NCIDQ; Randy Riggans
Structural Engineer: Barber & Hoffman, Inc., Jim Pospisil
MEP Engineer: Tower Engineering, Jim Kosinski
Civil Engineer: Civil & Environmental Consultants, Inc., John Frydrych
Client: Grove City Area School District
Photographer: DRAW Collective

The Grove City Area School District’s Hillview Elementary project saw the consolidation of the District’s buildings as an opportunity to create an outstanding learning environment. A bright, colorful environment was designed to emphasize the STEAM educational program at the elementary school and to excite and inspire students who attend Hillview Elementary.

Received 600 out of 3,893 online votes


YOUNG ARCHITECTS STUDIO COMPETITION AWARD

The Fern Hollow Junction
Architects:
Brendan Bogolin & Brad Feitl

When the Fern Hollow Bridge collapsed on January 28th, 2022, the neighborhoods of SquirrelHill and Regent Square became disconnected. The construction of a new automotive bridge will encourage car traffic to return, but what about the people?

Our intervention seeks to establish an accessible pedestrian junction to reconnect RegentsSquare with Squirrel Hilland Frick Park. This space will support movement but will also provide a tranquil destination to relax.

The organization of the structure and the plan utilizes an equilateral triangle grid. This geometry allows for flexibility while still enabling a clear and efficient structural system. The structural system of the deck follows the triangular grid. The triangles are supported by tree-like columns. These columns branch out to support the foot traffic above. The design of the column accommodates the varying heights of the dynamic topography.The branches of the columns also establish the angle of the railings. This tilt encourages visitors to lean forward and look down at the forestry and creek below.

To encourage a greater connection to the forest, wood was chosen as the primary material.Wood is a renewable resource and readily available in Pennsylvania. It is also carbon sequestering due to the life cycle of the tree.

The junction is both an enjoyable destination and a functional piece of infrastructure. This would be an ideal location for having a picnic, reading a book, or hanging out with friends.However, it also allows greater accessibility to the existing Frick Park trail network. Frick Park has many steep hills which limit who can access the trails. This connector provides gradual ramps to the lower trails for pedestrians with mobility impairments or bicyclists.

JURY COMMENTS: “The project was particularly sensitive to the context by creating a tree top boardwalk that meanders through the air while making important connections through Frick Park. This “forest bridge” solution contrasts with the “highway bridge” under construction now. The contrast made it a natural-systems bridge that has the greatest potential for synergy with the park and trail network. More than being an addition to the bridge, it becomes part of the eco-system with a positive impact on Fern Hollow, the natural environment, and the park user experience in a way that was appropriate and in scale with the context. The geometry, structure, and material thinking was expressive, but simple and flexible so it could adapt and change to meet different needs of the environment and community.”