Strike Out

There will be no AIA Twenty-five Year Award winner this year

Architecture National News
There will be no AIA Twenty-five Year Award winner this year. The 2017 winner of the Twenty-five Year Award was the Grand Louvre, by Pei Cobb Freed & Partners (Courtesy AIA)
There will be no AIA Twenty-five Year Award winner this year. The 2017 winner of the Twenty-five Year Award was the Grand Louvre, by Pei Cobb Freed & Partners (Courtesy AIA)

For the first time since the Twenty-Five Year award program was opened in 1971, the AIA has decided that there is no winner.

The award honors a building that has “stood the test of time for 25-35 years and continues to set standards of excellence for its architectural design and significance,” according to the AIA. Moreover, the building must completed, in good shape, and not be significantly changed from its intended design. In 2017, the Twenty-five Year Award went to the Grand Louvre – Phase 1, by I.M.Pei & Partners (Pei Cobb Freed & Partners).

According to a statement released by the AIA to AN, the jury “felt that there were submissions that appeal to architects and there were those that appeal to the public. The consensus was that the Twenty-five Year Award should appeal to both. Unfortunately, this year the jury did not find a submission that it felt achieved twenty-five years of exceptional aesthetic and cultural relevance while also representing the timelessness and positive impact the profession aspires to achieve.”

Needless to say, this is quite a snub to any buildings completed between 1983 and 1993. While it’s hard to speculate what the top contenders would have been, perhaps this is also a comment on the speed of demolition and the challenges of preserving outstanding buildings from this decade.

The 2018 jury included Lee Becker, FAIA, Hartman-Cox Architects (Washington, D.C.); Anne Marie Decker, FAIA, Duvall Decker Architects (Jackson, Miss.); Susan Johnson, AIA, Strata Architecture + Preservation (Kansas City, Mo.); Anna Jones, Assoc. AIA, Shyft Collective (Johnston, Iowa); Merilee Meacock, AIA, KSS Architects (Princeton, N.J.); Robert Miller, FAIA, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson (Seattle); Sharon Prince, Grace Farms Foundation (New Canaan, Conn.); Rob Rogers, FAIA, Rogers Partners (New York); student representative Caitlin Jean Kessler, the University of Arizona.

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