Architecture

AIA Architecture Awards celebrate best and brightest US-licensed firms

AIA Architecture Awards celebr...
Jishou Art Museum was designed by Atelier FCJZ and is located in Jishou, China. The project is one of this year's AIA Architecture Awards winners
Jishou Art Museum was designed by Atelier FCJZ and is located in Jishou, China. The project is one of this year's AIA Architecture Awards winners
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Canada's Calgary Central Library was designed by Snøhetta and Dialog
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Canada's Calgary Central Library was designed by Snøhetta and Dialog
Calgary Central Library's exterior features a glazed facade with a hexagonal pattern of glass and aluminum
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Calgary Central Library's exterior features a glazed facade with a hexagonal pattern of glass and aluminum
Calgary Central Library's interior is defined by an attractive wooden atrium topped by a decorative oculus
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Calgary Central Library's interior is defined by an attractive wooden atrium topped by a decorative oculus
India's Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2 was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
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India's Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2 was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2 was a challenging project that tripled the existing airport's capacity on a constrained site
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Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2 was a challenging project that tripled the existing airport's capacity on a constrained site
Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2's design is inspired by traditional Indian decorative patterns
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Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2's design is inspired by traditional Indian decorative patterns
Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship (IIT Innovation Center) was designed by John Ronan Architects and is located in Chicago
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Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship (IIT Innovation Center) was designed by John Ronan Architects and is located in Chicago
Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship (IIT Innovation Center) is situated within the Mies van Der Rohe-designed historic Illinois Institute of Technology campus
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Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship (IIT Innovation Center) is situated within the Mies van Der Rohe-designed historic Illinois Institute of Technology campus
Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship (IIT Innovation Center) features a high-tech facade that's controlled by an automated system and adapts to shifting weather and daylight in real time to balance energy use and interior light
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Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship (IIT Innovation Center) features a high-tech facade that's controlled by an automated system and adapts to shifting weather and daylight in real time to balance energy use and interior light
Floral Court is located in London, UK, and was designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates
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Floral Court is located in London, UK, and was designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates
Floral Court creates a new district with a public courtyard at its heart in London's famous Covent Garden
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Floral Court creates a new district with a public courtyard at its heart in London's famous Covent Garden
Floral Court adds 31 new and refurbished apartments as well as 14 converted serviced apartments housed in a number of historic row houses
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Floral Court adds 31 new and refurbished apartments as well as 14 converted serviced apartments housed in a number of historic row houses
Glenstone Museum is located in Potomac, Maryland, and was designed by Thomas Phifer and Partners
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Glenstone Museum is located in Potomac, Maryland, and was designed by Thomas Phifer and Partners
The Glenstone Museum expansion increases exhibition space for its collection of post-World War II art. It's centered around a building called the Pavilions which is ringed by 6,000 new trees
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The Glenstone Museum expansion increases exhibition space for its collection of post-World War II art. It's centered around a building called the Pavilions which is ringed by 6,000 new trees
Glenstone Museum's interior is naturally lit
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Glenstone Museum's interior is naturally lit
Jishou Art Museum was designed by Atelier FCJZ and is located in Jishou, China. The project is one of this year's AIA Architecture Awards winners
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Jishou Art Museum was designed by Atelier FCJZ and is located in Jishou, China. The project is one of this year's AIA Architecture Awards winners
Jishou Art Museum straddles the Wanrong River and doubles as a pedestrian bridge
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Jishou Art Museum straddles the Wanrong River and doubles as a pedestrian bridge
Jishou Art Museum structurally comprises two separate bridges. The lower level pedestrian bridge is an open steel truss structure, while the upper level is a concrete arch, cast in-situ, containing a painting gallery
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Jishou Art Museum structurally comprises two separate bridges. The lower level pedestrian bridge is an open steel truss structure, while the upper level is a concrete arch, cast in-situ, containing a painting gallery
The Minnesota State Capitol Restoration involved multiple teams, including HGA Architects and Engineers
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The Minnesota State Capitol Restoration involved multiple teams, including HGA Architects and Engineers
The Minnesota State Capitol Restoration cost US$310 million and took four years
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The Minnesota State Capitol Restoration cost US$310 million and took four years
The Minnesota State Capitol Restoration included repairing its stone exterior, improving accessibility, and adding a new elevator
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The Minnesota State Capitol Restoration included repairing its stone exterior, improving accessibility, and adding a new elevator
Tivoli Hjørnet was designed by Pei Cobb Freed & Partners and is located in
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Tivoli Hjørnet was designed by Pei Cobb Freed & Partners and is located in Copenhagen, Denmark
Tivoli Hjørnet provides new amenities to Copenhagen's Tivoli Garden
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Tivoli Hjørnet provides new amenities to Copenhagen's Tivoli Garden
Tivoli Hjørnet contains a hotel, restaurants, and retail space, and its overall design is meant to echo the moat and fortifications that once surrounded Copenhagen
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Tivoli Hjørnet contains a hotel, restaurants, and retail space, and its overall design is meant to echo the moat and fortifications that once surrounded Copenhagen
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The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has revealed the winners of the 2020 Architecture Awards. Representing one of the most important architecture awards of the year, highlights include an impressive museum that doubles as a bridge, a library built atop a railway track, and the restoration of a historic government building.

As with previous years, AIA's 2020 Architecture Awards aims to celebrate the best contemporary architecture by US-licensed firms and highlight the ways buildings and spaces can improve lives. AIA's nine-member jury selected submissions that they felt "demonstrate design achievement, including a sense of place, purpose, history, and environmental sustainability."

There are a total of eight winning projects this year, just three of which are actually located in the US, with the rest being in India, Canada, China, Denmark, and the United Kingdom. Some big names feature, such as Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates, and Snøhetta. The winners will be exhibited at the AIA Conference on Architecture in Los Angeles in May.

We briefly cover each winner below, but head to the gallery to see more of each.

Canada's Calgary Central Library was designed by Snøhetta and Dialog
Canada's Calgary Central Library was designed by Snøhetta and Dialog

Snøhetta and Dialog's Calgary Central Library in Canada is a superb project built on a challenging site that has a train running through it. The library features large amounts of soundproofing and vibration damping systems so that visitors can read in peace.

Its exterior is enlivened by a glazed facade with an attractive hexagonal pattern of glass and aluminum. Visitors enter through an impressive wooden archway inspired by Chinook cloud formations and the interior layout is centered around a wooden atrium that's topped by a decorative oculus.

Floral Court is located in London, UK, and was designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates
Floral Court is located in London, UK, and was designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates

Regular New Atlas readers will probably be most familiar with Kohn Pedersen Fox for its skyscrapers – the firm has designed many of the world's tallest buildings – but with its Floral Court, it created a new mixed-use area in London's famous Covent Garden.

Floral Court adds 31 new and refurbished apartments, plus 14 converted serviced apartments in a number of row houses. An old warehouse and the ornate interior of the former boardroom for the Westminster Fire office now serve as the apartments' main entrance. The entire project was also carried out with minimum disturbance to existing businesses and homes.

Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2 was a challenging project that tripled the existing airport's capacity on a constrained site
Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2 was a challenging project that tripled the existing airport's capacity on a constrained site

The Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2 project involved tripling the Mumbai airport's capacity. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) had a real challenge on its hands as the site is awkwardly shaped, cramped, and ringed by villages and an overflowing river.

SOM rose to the occasion with an X-shaped, four-story terminal that avoids the villages and river, while maximizing available space. The terminal was constructed in phases to minimize disruption and its eye-catching interior design draws inspiration from traditional Indian decorative patterns, including the Lotus flower.

Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship (IIT Innovation Center) features a high-tech facade that's controlled by an automated system and adapts to shifting weather and daylight in real time to balance energy use and interior light
Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship (IIT Innovation Center) features a high-tech facade that's controlled by an automated system and adapts to shifting weather and daylight in real time to balance energy use and interior light

The Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship, by John Ronan Architects, adds a new academic building to the Mies van Der Rohe-designed Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago.

The building is organized around two open-air courtyards and its interior is flexible. Additionally, its second floor, which cantilevers outward to provide shade below, features a high-tech facade that automatically controls how much natural light permeates within.

Glenstone Museum is located in Potomac, Maryland, and was designed by Thomas Phifer and Partners
Glenstone Museum is located in Potomac, Maryland, and was designed by Thomas Phifer and Partners

Thomas Phifer and Partners recently won AIA's Interiors award for its Corning Museum of Glass and the firm is honored again here for its expansion of the Glenstone Museum in Potomac, Maryland. The project adds new exhibition space for the museum's collection of post-World War II art.

In all, available exhibition space was increased by 50,000 sq ft (4,645 sq m). This is centered around a large naturally-lit building called Pavilions, which like the Corning Museum of Glass, makes excellent use of skylights to provide a naturally-lit interior. Additionally, the landscaping was overhauled with over 6,000 new trees, while reflection pools enliven the site.

Jishou Art Museum straddles the Wanrong River and doubles as a pedestrian bridge
Jishou Art Museum straddles the Wanrong River and doubles as a pedestrian bridge

China's Jishou Art Museum, by Atelier FCJZ, is a definite standout in this year's selection. Bringing to mind BIG's Twist, the museum doubles up as a bridge for the local community. Structurally, it actually comprises two bridges: a lower level pedestrian bridge and the upper level, which contains a painting gallery showcasing local art. A store, teahouses, and administrative offices are housed in the bridgeheads at either end.

Flooding was a major concern, so the lowest point of the museum sits well above the flood line and its steel trusses were designed to allow tree branches carried by flood water to pass through.

Tivoli Hjørnet contains a hotel, restaurants, and retail space, and its overall design is meant to echo the moat and fortifications that once surrounded Copenhagen
Tivoli Hjørnet contains a hotel, restaurants, and retail space, and its overall design is meant to echo the moat and fortifications that once surrounded Copenhagen

Tivoli Hjørnet, by Pei Cobb Freed & Partners, adds a new hotel, restaurants, and retail space for visitors to Copenhagen's famous Tivoli Garden to enjoy.

The project is defined by large double curving walls and its design is meant to evoke the moat and fortifications that once protected the city. On the street-facing side, it cantilevers over the sidewalk to provide a shaded place to walk. An electronically-controlled shading system also controls light inside.

The Minnesota State Capitol Restoration involved multiple teams, including HGA Architects and Engineers
The Minnesota State Capitol Restoration involved multiple teams, including HGA Architects and Engineers

The Minnesota State Capitol Restoration, which involved HGA Architects and Engineers and others, restored the historically important Class Gilbert-designed government building. After withstanding over a century of harsh winters, it was in poor shape and had significant water damage.

The four year project was completed in stages so that the building could remain open and cost US$310 million. Highlights of the restoration work included the repair of exterior stone work, a new accessibility-focused entrance, and both a new elevator and the repair of an existing glass elevator.

Source: AIA

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