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AIA Tennessee Recognizes 2018 Lifetime Awards Honorees

Categories Lifetime Awards, News, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , ,

Gary Everton, FAIA and L. Duane Grieve, FAIA received the highest honors that AIA Tennessee can bestow on an individual during the 2018 AIA Tennessee Conference on Architecture.

2018 Lifetime Award Recipients, Gary Everton, FAIA (left) with Duane Grieve, FAIA (right).

The two awards, William Strickland Lifetime Achievement Award for the Profession of Architecture and Samuel Morgan Lifetime Service Award for Contribution to Architecture in the Public Realm, are conferred by the AIA Tennessee Board in recognition of a significant body of work influencing the built environment.

Gary Everton, FAIA, of Nashville received the 2018 AIA Tennessee William Strickland Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding design work, firm leadership, and service to the American Institute of Architects on the local, state, regional and national levels.

L.. Duane Grieve, FAIA, of Knoxville, was awarded the 2018 AIA Tennessee Samuel Morgan Lifetime Service Award for his impressive achievements in his career, service to AIA (serving as the National Treasurer) and commitment in the political realm as a citizen architect serving on the Knoxville City Council and most recently as the executive director of the East TN Community Design Center.

These awards were given at an Awards Gala held during the AIA TN Conference on Architecture while their families, friends and professional colleagues helped them celebrate.

AIA Tennessee Recognizes TOP TEN Emerging Professional Friendly Firms in Tennessee

Categories EP Competitions & Challenges, News | Tagged

Nashville, TN – The American Institute of Architects, Tennessee Chapter (AIA Tennessee) has selected the recipients of the Emerging Professionals Friendly Firm (EPFF) program. The award program showcases the best Tennessee firms offering great support and opportunities to their Emerging Professionals. The goal of the awards program is to foster dialogue within firms across the state to create new and innovative policies and opportunities that support and develop future members of the design profession.

While all firms that participated in this year’s program showed support for their emerging professionals, the jury wanted to specifically recognize those firms that made professional development and leadership opportunities for their younger staff members an integral part of their firms’ overall studio culture as well as their business policies and practices.

Criteria for the selected firms include the following principles:

  • support and resources for EPs attaining licensure
  • equitable compensation and benefits for EPs
  • professional and personal development opportunities for EPs
  • diversity and equal opportunity for EPs

Top Ten Firms were selected by a jury of peers and are as follows:

Outstanding EPFF Firms:

  • EOA Architects, PLLC, Nashville, TN
  • Haizlip Studio, Memphis, TN
  • HBG Design, Memphis, TN
  • McCarty Holsaple McCarty, Knoxville, TN
  • Smith Gee Studio, Nashville, TN

EPFF Firms:

  • archimania, Memphis, TN
  • Hastings Architecture Associates, Nashville, TN
  • TMPartners, PLLC, Brentwood, TN
  • Self+Tucker Architects, Memphis, TN
  • Studio Four Design, Knoxville, TN


Categories Design Awards, News | Tagged , , ,

AIA Tennessee celebrated the 2018 Design Awards at the historic Franklin Theatre during AIA Tennessee’s state conference in Franklin on July 24, 2018.  To salute excellence in architecture, AIA Tennessee conducts an annual Design Awards program.  This program honors built works of distinction designed by members, and brings to public attention their outstanding architectural accomplishments.

Craig Kronenberg, AIA, principal at Hefferlin + Kronenberg Architects, PLLC in Chattanooga, chaired the 2018 program.  Mr. Kronenberg assembled an impressive jury from Chicago to review the entries from across the state.  Jurors were Carol Ross Barney, FAIA (Ross Barney Architects), Jay Longo, AIA (Solomon Cordwell, and Buenz Architects), and Dan Wheeler, FAIA (Wheeler Kerns Architects).

The thirteen projects were unanimously chosen from a field of 98 submittals, all of which received thoughtful consideration.  The jurors noted the diverse range of work and elegant solutions to challenges presented.

Scroll down to view the awarded projects.


Ballet Memphis
archimania (Memphis)

New construction: A nationally acclaimed professional ballet company wished to move from a suburban location to a performing-arts district undergoing revitalization in Memphis.

Photo credit: archimania

The civic-oriented facility is an extension of the Company’s mission. With large windows and public courtyards, the building contributes to the already thriving urban district. Formerly a hotel with parking in the front, the new site design inverts the original scheme. The building is designed to engage the public in movement, culture, and connection to the community. It houses rehearsal space for the professional company, a dance school for over 200 children, and community dance and pilates classes. The largest rehearsal studio also doubles as a performance venue.

The copper screen sits at the historic street edge—enhancing the urban experience within an entertainment district—while complying with current city codes and setbacks. The building’s façade offers opportunities for the community to participate in the organization, via exterior courtyards, retail experiences, and a café, and a costume shop featuring a display window/mini-performance place.

Photo credit: archimania

The courtyard spaces offer opportunities for the community to engage with the school, and also break the scale of the large building down to suit the context. The exterior form, composed of layers of glass, perforated copper, and volumes of contrasting metal evokes the character of a music box. Gauzy screens and courtyards that penetrate the building mass both mask and reveal the activity of dancers within. Warm and neutral materials alongside cool colors are also used to frame and display activity and the dancers.

Dance and architecture share a focus on movement, space and time. Celebrating these disciplines, through this civic project, enhances its growing entertainment district and the adjacent residential neighborhoods.

Enigmatic, presents a changing story as one walks perimeter of building/context and continues into interior.
Creation of veiled curtains, middle zones between public and private spaces brings theatrical, useful spaces out to street.
Profile of performance space to public as curtain a memorable, lasting signature image.
Structure (lateral bracing) and skin expressed, the building becomes a performative body to encounter, participate with.
Concept, civic-ness, execution all impressive.
Home run.

Merit Awards

Memphis Business Academy
Self + Tucker Architects (Memphis)

Photo credit: Chad Mellon Photography & Mario Walker

This new construction project challenged the design team to consider materials, systems, and assemblies from various perspectives. The goal was to deliver a creative and productive environment for students & staff. Their solution involved a selection of quality systems in tandem with cost efficiency, building orientation and design aesthetics. The school refers to their students as “executives”, so the idea was to place student in a more “corporate” like environment to solidify the core objective of business focused education. The single story pre-engineered metal frame building was designed to meet the best practices for sustainable design to minimize the impact on the environment, although the project did not pursue the LEED for Schools certification.

Photo credit: Chad Mellon Photography & Mario Walker

The building provides 22,000 sf of high-tech multipurpose classrooms and a gymnasium for elementary, middle and high school students. The gymnasium with an elevated walking track is also available for use to the members of the surrounding Frayser community. It is flanked by a classroom block, which is linearly arranged to respond to the site conditions and take advantage of the daylighting. A student plaza was strategically located between the new facility and the existing school to create an outdoor gathering place where members of the school community can convene throughout the school day.

It is difficult to make architecture on a charter’s budget.
The building is fresh, and unapologetically cheerful.

Lanier Farm Park
archimania (Memphis)

Renovation/Restoration: In a municipality accustomed to playgrounds and sports fields, the idea of combining a working farm as a public park felt overwhelming to the constituents. With intensive public involvement throughout the design process, the project resulted in a new recreational model that ensures the community remains aware of where food comes from as well as the value of educating children.

Photo credit: archimania and Jamie Johnson Photography

The northern portion of the property became the public/education zone, and the southern part of the park, the production zone. The core activity area of the site facilitates program needs for school children. The layout provides flexible spaces that allow coordinating activities to overlap. Activity areas such as the community garden, discovery garden, kitchen garden, chicken yard, orchard, horse barn, and performance lawn are closely grouped and connected with paths that allow children to view and participate in multiple activities in a relatively small area. Wood fencing with wire mesh defines areas and provides a barrier between humans and animals.

Photo credit: archimania and Jamie Johnson Photography

Multiple lawn areas accommodate various size groups, from outdoor classrooms to fall festivals and concerts. Two renovated barns are used for classes and to provide an income stream through rentals for weddings, family reunions, and parties. The finished product portrays the messy personality of a farm. The farm has developed partnerships with the local university, hospital, and several nonprofits, each contributing to seasonal and yearly educational programs for children and adults. The bio-intensive growth methods produce a yield providing enough for the community supported agriculture association members, as well as generating a signification amount to donate to local food banks.

Appreciated the reading and mining modest/utilitarian building types, adjusting/calibrating.
With community involvement, and an architectural empathy, a previously private establishment is socialized, made into an accessible civic, educational and memorable place.

The McIlwaine Friendship Pavilion
Sanders Pace Architecture (Knoxville)

New construction: As the official botanical garden of the State of Tennessee the Gardens at the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture occupy an important place on the University’s campus. The gardens solicited designer qualifications for a new pavilion which would serve as a multi-use facility for a number of events which take place within the garden. While the original brief requested the site adaptation of a vendor-provided pre-engineered structure, the design team presented a more site specific and place appropriate solution which was ultimately approved.

Photo credit: Denise Retallack

In order to keep the focus on the plantings within the garden, a solution which limits the profile and visual impact of the 60’ long structure was proposed. 4 central piers anchor the structure and provide a base for the low-slope butterfly roof which sets a horizontal datum underneath the canopy of two rows of mature oak trees. This roof directs rainwater to a 500 gallon cistern which provides irrigation for plantings while serving as an educational opportunity for students and Garden visitors.

Photo credit: Denise Retallack

The 4 central piers are clad in native crab orchard stone. With a roof structure composed of layers natural fir timbers and purlins supported by a galvanized steel structural system. The materials palette is reflective of some of the materials already found within the research campus and complementary to materials and plantings found within the garden. Now complete, the pavilion provides a fitting setting for educational and cultural events while also serving as a much needed revenue source funding research and community outreach initiatives which are at the core of the mission of the UT Gardens.

Appreciated including a critique of what was the kneejerk/given (low-hanging fruit of off the shelf prototypes), diagnosed site and illustrated research/test fits, and then carefully/thoughtfully administered the prescription.
Personally would like to know more the reason/story about the use of, and means of stone.

Poplar Foundation + Pyramid Peak
archimania (Memphis)

Interior architecture: Two Memphis philanthropic foundations teamed up to share new office spaces within a recently renovated Sears distribution facility, previously vacant for 20 years. Each tenant space is primarily made up of private office and meeting rooms.

Photo credit: n/a

A central mass of shared common spaces divide the tenants for selective privacy while allowing for shared resources. This primary organizing element is a “bow-tie” shaped mass that was developed to obscure the dominant and rigid column grid within the existing space. The bow-tie is comprised of a common conference room, hoteling office, storage and wet bar. The bow-tie also delineates separate entry sequences and offers the capability for dual reception when needed.

Photo credit:n/a

As a method to establish a level of refinement for both tenants, the bow-tie component is clad with sequenced, stained oak panels. The mass is carved out by the existing column grid and capitals, rendering the emphatic grid less obvious. Thin staggered planes further obscure the column grid and bound offices. Their thinness and lack of materiality contrast the mass and rich texture of the bow-tie. Mechanical crossovers bridging the bow-tie and offices conceal the exposed building systems that are typically present throughout the existing space.

One move elegantly solves a multitude of apparent challenges.
Definition/security, lighting, plan and material warmth variation against pragmatic “cool” offices.
Good fences make good neighbors.
Well done.

House for Five
designshop, pllc (Memphis)

New construction: A family of five outgrew their traditional cottage and moved to a small, rural, west Tennessee town where they sought a larger contemporary house with clean detailing and filled with light.

Photo credit: Chad Mellon Photographer

Sited adjacent to a soybean field on a dead end street, the design capitalizes on a site that is inherently private as it naturally exists. The house forms an “L” shape parti, screening views of the neighboring house while utilizing the natural tree edge to define the remaining two sides of a private rear lawn. Brick (required by covenants) walls form a solid, protective base upon which a lighter second story volume rests. The brick is punctured by floor-to-ceiling openings and extends beyond the enclosed envelope to wrap a deck and garden as part of the rear yard. The second story is rendered in a much lighter (and affordable) galvalume skin as its volume encloses not only the inhabitable spaces of the upper floor, but seamlessly integrates into a lower roof volume over the single story spaces. The owners sought an exterior that was clean, crisp and low maintenance with interiors that were white and filled with natural light. To save costs while offering a neutral backdrop for the owners’ limited art collection, interior finishes are reduced to white gypsum board walls, exposed concrete slab, and warm accents of walnut millwork throughout.

Photo credit: Chad Mellon Photographer

Entry is through a deeply recessed porch on the east, leading past a wood-screened stair toward the kitchen, dining, and living spaces, treated as a large continuous space. Programmatically, public spaces are centered on the ground level with large walls of glass offering expansive views, while the second story is more cellular with kids’ bedrooms. Although uniquely contemporary within a traditional context, the house is loved by the small-town neighbors.

Really liked the modesty of materials, no pool; attempts to claim exterior space.
Clearly programmed and executed design intent.

Elkmont Brewery
McCarty Holsaple McCarty (Knoxville)

A vacant building was renovated to bring new life to an area that was desperately awaiting rejuvenation. The building now serves as a Brewery and Eating House, and its dynamic facade acts as a symbol of new life for this quickly emerging, progressive neighborhood.

Photo credit: Ben Finch

The North Knoxville Neighborhood, located only a few miles from Downtown Knoxville is a district that has been slowly trying to revitalize. While the change had begun, there were still many dilapidated buildings sitting vacant with no prospect of future activity. The goal for the renovation of the existing building into a brewery and restaurant was to spark the redevelopment of this potentially vibrant area. Gathering inspiration from the radiant beauty of the Smoky Mountains and the unique history of the Elkmont region, Elkmont Exchange used a series of folding planes that act as a wrapper around the existing building. The warm wood pulled from Elkmont’s roots, undulates to create a dynamic skin to activate Broadway Avenue.

Photo credit: Ben Finch

The facade was contrived from a grant from the City of Knoxville showing their buy-in and support for the growth of the neighborhood with hope that this could be the catalyst for this area. Inside of the Brewery and Eating house, the openness and transparency allows for a direct connection between preparation and consumption. The strong roots of the Smoky Mountain’s Elkmont region are embedded throughout the interior of the space from the macro-scale wall graphic to the micro-scale wall hook.

Appreciated most the screen-wall; is it a wall or a fence?
Relation to grade and sky create a kind of temporary “fly” that shelters in-between spaces, which were seen as the most successful aspect of the project.

A Step Ahead
archimania (Memphis)

Interior architecture: A non-profit organization had been operating out of a space that did not lend itself to collaboration. They decided to relocate into a massive, newly renovated distribution warehouse in one of the most ethnically diverse and economically challenged neighborhoods in Memphis.

Photo credit: archimania

A major challenge was to fit a large program into a small tenant space on a limited budget, creating connections and openness despite the privacy requirements. The client required space for training, meeting, and workspaces requiring some closed offices due to HIPPA concerns. The cost of the project includes raw, shell cost, as a vanilla box was not developed by the shell and core developer. A large part of the client’s workflow involves marketing to women in need and possible cooperative organizations. The public face of the project offers a significant opportunity to provide information and resources to passers-by in a non-invasive way. The concept of a ‘Little Free Library’ inspired a boldly-colored millwork wall containing openings for views, literature, announcements, and advertising.

Photo credit: archimania

To create a feeling of openness, and to work within a modest budget, the original concrete ceilings were left exposed. A series of bulkheads with dark-blue interiors define work zones. These zones participate in a strategy of progressively eroding private offices along the corridor toward the day-lit exterior face of the building. Desired sightlines were identified to perforate the forms and create functional connections. The simple detailing and palette of white and dark-blue paint, maple millwork, and yellow accents participate in promoting the organization’s growth, outreach, and brand.

Punching above its weight class.
Variations/sequence of functional plan and section deliver a great place to work.
Clouds work very well; color just enough

Design Miami Pavilions
Branch Technology & SHoP Architects (Chattanooga)

New construction: Design Miami represents the 2016 Panerai Design Miami / Visionary Award commission to create an exhibition entry sequence combining freeform 3D printing with parametric design. The client wanted to advance building technologies and material innovations through 3D printing by leveraging direct digital fabrication through new software and robotic technologies to achieve mass customization.

Photo credit: Robin Hill and Miami Design District Associates

The result was two lattice gridshell pavilions. Pavilion A provides an open public gathering space while Pavilion B incorporates a lounging area constructed of bamboo fiber reinforced Fused Deposition Modeling components. Assembled they provided an organically inspired interactive environment.

Photo credit: Robin Hill and Miami Design District Associates

The brief required a solution that could quickly be assembled onsite to host several programmatic spaces, promote innovative technologies and utilize pre-fabrication to facilitate transport and re-assembly to its current location in the Miami Design District where the pavilions function as community gathering spaces.
Project aspects:
World’s largest freeform 3D printed structures
Total printed volume – 1,354 cuft
45 freeformed components
Largest component – 25’x7’x6” weighing 175 lbs

Essentially a shade structure, the jury recognized this project as a glimpse into the future of building delivery systems.
The biomorphic result was much appreciated.

Tennessee College of Applied Technology Murfreesboro at Smyrna Campus/Nissan Training Center
Tuck-Hinton Architects (Nashville)

New construction: Flagship educational and training facility focused on public/private collaboration in developing a focused, skilled workforce to support local manufacturing industry.

Photo credit: Parker Studios

This prototype facility was envisioned as a new model for developing a local skilled labor force with support and investment from local private industry. More specifically, the building was planned to be a joint-use facility between a state workforce development/higher education entity and a global auto manufacturer. The facility not only needed to provide spaces that were conducive to both learning and demonstration, but also inspirational and forward-looking in terms of technology and flexibility.

Photo credit: Parker Studios

Each entity provided a separate program of spaces required to support their needs, and much effort was spent identifying efficiencies and synergies between varying programmatic functions. The resulting building is comprised of both classroom and lab type spaces where students and trainees are able to learn, through conceptual instruction as well as hands-on training, the latest practices related to manufacturing and automotive trades.The building’s layout and infrastructure configuration required careful consideration, and was designed to support and anticipate future industry innovation.

Ultimately, the building needed to serve as a showplace for both education and industry. A high level of visibility and light was desired to inspire and excite potential students, in addition to exhibiting the potential for what other facilities of this type could achieve throughout the state – all with a budget of a little over $200 per square foot.

Big gesture totally in line with big building.
Diagram followed through in execution, legible.
Un-fussed over, confident, enlightened.

The Flying Squirrel
Tinker Ma, formerly Cogent Studio (Chattanooga)

New construction: The Flying Squirrel was designed to be a destination bar and restaurant that attracts travelers while serving as a hub for the local Southside neighbors.

Photo credit: Grant Dotson Commercial and Sam Silvey, Spectruss

The clients desired a solution that would serve two purposes: providing an amenity for guests of their neighboring hostel, which attracts outdoor enthusiasts; and attracting locals by offering what feels like a communal gathering place. The clients wanted the space to embrace the outdoors and feel inviting to guests fresh off the trails. The resulting design features comfortable outdoor areas, including a cozy, landscaped patio, a “cedar room” space with a table for larger groups and an indoor/outdoor bar that allows patrons to experience great service and the charms of the outdoors from either side of the bar. The ambience and tone of the space is equally conducive to a big night out on the town or a quick beer after a day in the woods.

Photo credit: Grant Dotson Commercial and Sam Silvey, Spectruss

Inside, the main volume is two stories, with a mezzanine space covering part of the interior. Musicians play on the mezzanine during brunch service, but their sound carries to the downstairs and beyond thanks to the open concept. A two-story block behind the main volume houses kitchen, restrooms and corporate offices. A passion for nature also guided the sustainable elements of the Squirrel. The design employed careful mechanical engineering, including solar hot water, shading and siting, as well as extensive use of reclaimed wood. Furthermore, the owner, project team and City of Chattanooga worked together to complete a pilot street stormwater project that incorporates pedestrian-friendly and innovative techniques. This element of the project was awarded the Governor’s Environmental Stewardship Award in 2014.

Of the overall commercial submissions, appreciated that exterior/interior were seamless.
Not heavily branded/literal quotations or designed nostalgia; not steampunked to death.
Clear materials: concrete, steel, wood, metal roofing.
Building is the signage.
Feathered edges of interior/exterior.

Alfred Williams & Company
Hastings Architecture Associates, LLC (Nashville)

The adaptive reuse and unification of four existing, mid-century warehouse buildings creates a thoughtful, modern, working showroom; a gallery for the art of workplace furnishings.

Alfred Williams & Company, the exclusive representative for Herman Miller in middle Tennessee, relocated to a burgeoning neighborhood, an area quickly developing into a design district for the city. This adaptive reuse rejuvenates an assemblage of four mid-century warehouse buildings. The modern and crisp aesthetic is the perfect backdrop for the refined products Alfred Williams showcases. The design concept is reflective of an art gallery – open, bright, and clean – the space is a canvas for the furniture.

Photo credit: Nick McGinn

Circulation facilitates a unique and deliberate procession. The once disjointed, multi-level circuitous pathways through the buildings are transformed into wide corridors and ramps, sittable steps and break-out moments. The main ramp connects the entry, open workspace, library and work café. The secondary ramp leads to a customer experience showroom, with a large meeting room and mock-up space. Creating connectivity throughout promotes a highly customizable and exploratory experience, and reflects the energetic culture of Alfred Williams & Company.

Photo credit: Nick McGinn

Through their partnership with Herman Miller, Alfred Williams & Company is utilizing their new space as a laboratory for the “Living Office,” a work environment that harnesses natural motivations and compels quality work. Living Office proposes a shift from standardized workstations and generic meeting rooms to a diverse landscape of purposeful settings. The freeform building plan employed provides abundant flexibility and accommodates activation beyond 8am-5pm with workspace doubling as casual gathering and event space.

Reading/mining of a modest building type to let it be all it is.
Nothing more than structure and light, coat of paint.
Did not overreach; all it needs to be.

Patterson Condo
archimania (Memphis)

Interior architecture: The client wished to transform a downtown Memphis condo into an exhibition space to house part of his extensive art collection.

Photo credit: archimania and Crye-Leike, Inc. REALTORS

Three elements organize the 1,500 SF dwelling. The primary element is a charcoal stained oak veneer monolith of shelving, used to divide the space about the long axis, while also displaying the smaller artifacts within the art collection. This monolith is caped on one end by a fireplace and the other a fish tank. A cradle of lighter, contrasting oak veneer holds the space, wrapping up three of the four perimeter walls. This wooden cradle translates into an art viewing bench, the kitchen millwork, storage spaces for the office and bedroom, and built-in furniture. The restrooms are contained within a glass box impacting the directionality of the gallery/dwelling minimally.

Photo credit: archimania and Crye-Leike, Inc. REALTORS

The small space features two balconies. The direction of the monolith, a linear light fixture in the living space extends the view, and minimal glass balcony doors help celebrate the exceptional views of Beale Street to the East and the Mississippi River to the West. Two smaller windows are thoughtfully framed, showcasing additional views of Memphis.

Quite the “transformation”.
Smart plan makes small space seem bigger than it is.
Seeing past the just finished delivery, with full occupation and “stuff”, should prove a great backdrop for living.

2018 EP Friendly Firm Award Call for Entries

Categories EP Competitions & Challenges, News, Resources | Tagged , , , ,

This awards program showcases the best Tennessee firms offering great support and opportunities to their Emerging Professionals.

The goal of the awards program is to foster dialogue within firms across the state to create new and innovative policies and opportunities that support and develop future members of the design profession.

Emerging Professionals are critical components to the vitality and growth of AIA and the profession. As such, recruitment and retention of these valued members is critical to our success. AIA Tennessee recognizes firms who offer superior support and opportunities to Emerging Professionals. We hope this process helps foster dialogue within firms and communities and across the state to create new and innovative policies and opportunities to support and develop the future members of our profession.

-Foster Value and Retention of EPs
-Providing unique firm cultures and benefits to encourage recruitment of EPs
-Providing equitable compensation and benefits
Provide strong professional development for EPs
-Encouraging and celebrating licensure
-Providing EPs with a broad and diverse experiences in firm practice
-Committing to and investing in EPs at all phases of their professional development
Promote EP engagement and leadership in the profession and the community
-Providing leadership opportunities to EPs
-Encouraging EPs to inform firm culture to transform the practice of architecture for the
next generation.
-Promoting involvement in the AIA and industry, charitable, and community organizations

Upon the evaluation of the following application by an impartial jury, we will present the certification of “EP-Friendly Firm” to applicants who demonstrate consistent accordance with the guiding principles listed above. Firms qualifying for this status may use the AIA TN EP-Friendly Firm logo on promotional materials to display their commitment to Emerging Professionals.

If a firm exhibits particular excellence, we will award a single “Outstanding EP-Friendly Firm” award in each category listed below:

Small firm = 10 & under
Medium firm = 11-49
Large firm = 50+

All awards will be presented at the AIA Tennessee Conference on Architecture. As this recognition is awarded annually, firms are encouraged to participate every year, refining their applications to demonstrate their continued support of EPs. An out-of-state jury will judge applications; firm identities will remain anonymous during evaluation.

1. Download the EP Friendly Firm Award Application  It is to be filled out together by one firm principal and one EP. Both must sign the application for it to be valid.

2. Applications in the form of a PDF file not exceeding 5 MB are to be uploaded to this Dropbox Folder ( by 5:00 PM CST on Friday, June 15.

There is no monetary fee to apply: we only ask for your dedication to this effort.

2018 Video Shorts & Poster Design Challenge Call for Entries

Categories EP Competitions & Challenges, News, Resources | Tagged , , , ,

This year’s theme for the AIA TN 2018 Video Shorts Challenge and Poster Design Challenge is #InScale

InScale reflects the multiple dimensions of design, from a crafted door handle to a city masterplan. From the Vitruvian Man to Modular Man to Burning Man; architects, interior designers, and land planners must always consider how their designs respond to and drive the conditions of their users.

Besides what is seen on paper, scale is also portrayed through the lens of a city’s political, economical, and social scope. We ask this year’s EPs to submit short videos and/or poster designs that echo this year’s theme of Scale.

The AIA TN Video Shorts & Poster Design Challenge invites architects and designers to bring their perspective to life through graphic design. The competition will be framed around the 2018 AIA TN Convention in Franklin. The challenge seeks to give presence, voice, and creative expression through graphics; capture different perspectives; and highlight what design professionals and community members are doing across our state.

Successful entries will be original graphics that uniquely address the conference theme: Scale


Successful entries will be original videos that uniquely address the conference theme: #inscale.


Challenge and Film Submission                       March 28 -June 15th at 5 pm CST

Final Films Due EXTENDED!                          July 2 at 5 pm CST

Judging                                                            June 15-July 20th

Screening Event                                              At 2018 Conference; location/time to be determined

90 – 120 seconds, including title, credits and the AIA Tennessee logo

Resolution 1080p/.mp4, h.264codec

Video must be submitted via Dropbox link given after completion of entry form below for judging. Please include your name in the file name of your video.

Theme: #scale

Open to all members of the design and construction profession

Third party images, footage, music, or any other creative/proprietary content must have expressed permission for use from all of the rights holders.

Last year’s winning video:


Successful entries will be original designs that uniquely address the conference theme: #inscale.


Challenge and Poster Submission                       March 28-June 15th at 5 pm CST

Final Posters Due                                                June 15th at 5 pm CST

Judging                                                                June 15-July 20th

Entries must be submitted as a high resolution PDF file.

Size 11” x 17” (portrait or landscape)

Poster must be submitted via Dropbox link given after completion of entry form below for judging. Please include your name in the file name of your PDF.

All entries become the property of AIA TN who reserve all production rights.

Entrant will need to provide all native files should their entry win.

Design must contain the following:
a) AIA TN logo
b) “2018 Conference on Architecture”
c) “In Scale”

2019 AIA TN Lifetime Award Nominations Now Open

Categories Lifetime Awards, News, Resources | Tagged , , , , ,


Now in its 8th year, the AIA Tennessee Board of Directors is currently accepting nominations for the William Strickland Lifetime Achievement and the Samuel Morgan Lifetime Service Awards.These awards are the highest honors that AIA Tennessee can bestow on an individual. They are conferred by the AIA Tennessee Board in recognition of a significant body of work influencing the built environment. Any individual living or dead, who the Jury believes qualified, is eligible to receive the William Strickland or Samuel Morgan Awards. Architects and individuals who have exhibited a lasting influence on the theory and practice of architecture will be honored with these awards.

Nomination Information: Nominations must be made by an AIA Tennessee Member. 

Download the 2019 Lifetime Awards Nomination Form

Deadline: All submissions must be received by 5:00 p.m., March 30, 2019.

Award Information: The awards ceremony to announce the recipients will occur at the AIA Tennessee Conference on Architecture in Knoxville, Tennessee, July 17-19, 2019. No more than one such award shall be made in any year for each award.

Submission: All submission materials must be included as one single file smaller than 6 MB. Save file as PDF, and reduce the PDF size in Adobe Acrobat via the “document” menu.

Questions: For any questions, please contact David Powell via email at


Categories Design Awards, News | Tagged

AIA Tennessee is pleased to announce the AIA Tennessee 2017 Design Awards.  To salute excellence in architecture, AIA Tennessee conducts an annual Design Awards Program.  This program honors built works of distinction designed by AIA Tennessee members.  The program also brings to public attention outstanding examples of architecture.

Mark Weaver, FAIA, principal at HBG Design in Memphis, chaired the Design Awards Program.  Mr. Weaver selected Ron Stelmarski, AIA, of Perkins + Will, Dallas, TX, to act as Jury Chair.  Completing the impressive jury were Kelly Mitchell, AIA, of Mitchell Garman Architects, Coy Talley, ASLA, of Talley Associates, James D. Looney, AIA, IIDA, of Looney + Associates and Gary Cunningham, FAIA, of Cunningham Architects.

Ten projects were chosen from a field of 98 submittals, all of which received thoughtful consideration. From the overall field, the jury noted “the work was not stylistic, but very rooted in place.”  Commenting further, “We reviewed a broad range of work that illustrated a genuine investment in the cities of Tennessee. There was a strong appreciation for the renovation and transformation projects due to their influence on the community fabric and the linking of the past to the present.”

“We recognized projects that we felt were most consistent and holistic and were executed on all levels: concept, exterior, interior, craft.”  A strong, clear response to context was important to the jury.

“We were also looking for a certain amount of risk or design adventure.”

NOTE: Click on the photos to view a larger image. 


Education Center for Beardsley Community Farm (Knoxville, TN)
Jennifer Akerman, AIA and the University of Tennessee College of Architecture + Design with Elizabeth Eason Architects (Knoxville, TN)

This Education Center was designed and built by architecture students and faculty in collaboration with professionals to serve a non-profit urban farm.

Photos by Bruce Cole Photography and Jennifer Akerman

Jury Comments

  • The jury truly admired the school and students for taking-on this project.
  • It’s nice to be schooled by the students sometimes…
  • The jury felt this project was an example of thoughtful design investigation that should occur with all architecture.
  • The final result was not overshadowed by the process and exhibits a thorough resolution at all scales.
  • The design is a sophisticated combination of conditioned and sheltered/non-conditioned space that maintains an appropriate presence on the site.
  • The jury recognized the cohesion that exemplifies teamwork with a modest budget and fast schedule.

85 Union (Memphis, TN)
Looney Ricks Kiss (Memphis, TN)

The project is a complete building rebranding and renovation to transform an under-performing 17,000-square-foot building located on a prime corner into a unique mixed-use downtown address.

Photos by Ken West Photography

Jury Comments

  • This project caught the attention of the jury with its strong, urban move. It was a very civic-minded solution to an important corner site.
  • The designers addressed the scale and speed of the city in a way that contributes to the experience of this site.
  • The design team brought much-needed punctuation the urban street wall.
  • Interestingly, the new architecture creates such an event that the adjacent buildings and parking garages visually “go away.”
  • The jury liked how the building was “turned inside-out” to engage the city.

Tech901 (Memphis, TN)
archimania (Memphis, TN)

A Memphis, TN based nonprofit required a new space for training and collaboration, capable of adapting for multiple functions related to the information technology industry.

Photos by Hank Mardukas Photography

Jury Comments

  • All the parts hang together for a complete design thought.
  • This project had minimal intervention, yet the most impact. The jury felt the organizing spine was an important navigational element.
  • The jury kept coming back to this project’s use of material textures and color values. They all work well together with a raw, natural undertone.
  • We appreciated that in an all concrete shell, the designers were brave enough to “add more concrete.”

The Chisca on Main (Memphis, TN)
Looney Ricks Kiss (Memphis, TN)

This historic rehabilitation is an incredible turn-around story illustrating how good design can transform a decades long derelict structure encompassing an entire city block into the missing link between a thriving arts district and the downtown core.

Photos by Ken West Photography

Jury Comments

  • This project was recognized and appreciated for the massive undertaking, breathing new life into a building that could have been a blind spot or even an albatross to its community.
  • The jury noted how the existing structures were refreshed with enough authentic care and sophisticated intervention that it did not lose the integrity of the original.
  • The outdoor, between-spaces were links that gave strong cohesion the full-block development.

Memphis Teacher Residency (Memphis, TN)
archimania (Memphis, TN)

A non-profit organization required a new space for recruitment, training and supporting teachers through an urban teacher residency graduate program.

Photos by Hank Mardukas Photography

Jury Comments:

  • The jury felt this project had a strong presence in the atrium of a building and brought the public realm up, into the space…a storefront in the sky.
  • There was a clear, consistent narrative: wood to books to knowledge that informed the material choices and their distribution.
  • The singular book table was a powerful organizing element in the already long space.
  • The design approach gave an appropriate scale to the large warehouse space.

Mama Gaia Organic Restaurant (Memphis, TN)
archimania (Memphis, TN)

An organic restaurant that reflects the owner’s values through a natural material palette, honest forms, and straightforward detailing with the budget of a startup.

Photos by Hank Mardukas Photography

Jury Comments:

  • The space was masterfully optimized. A lot was accomplished with very little added.
  • The jury appreciated the response to the existing structure; the patina of the original space seemed to inform the color selection.
  • The room-within-a-room was carefully composed and did a good job of feeling casual.
  • There was a level of refinement to the scale of the detail and furniture, but didn’t overdo it.
  • The detailing concept was recognized for being consistent with the restaurant’s brand – raw, whole foods.

921 B. Woodland Street (Nashville, TN)
Pfeffer Torode Architecture (Nashville, TN)

The project transformed an unfinished basement in an existing block building into a light filled creative office.

Photos by Nick McGinn Photography

Jury Comments:

  • This project was admired for the “architectural excavation” approach the design team took.
  • The design was intelligent and required serious vision, risk and likely some convincing.
  • The jury admittedly had difficulty understanding the site without any plans or section drawings.
  • It not only renovated a space, but provided a completely new way of experiencing the building.
  • The design offered the jury an unexpected result from what could have been an otherwise ordinary assemblage of spaces.
  • Small, important details, such as the window protruding from the wall exhibited a refinement at all scales.

Balter Beerworks (Knoxville, TN)
Sanders Pace Architecture & Trapp Associates LTD

The adaptive reuse of an existing automobile service station into a full-service restaurant and brewery located at a gateway intersection into Downtown Knoxville.

Photos by Bruce McCamish and Bruce Cole

Jury Comments:

  • The jury found this project to be an “architecture as narrative.”
  • There was a clever project narrative surrounding the nature of “fuel” considering a gas station had been transformed into a beerworks.
  • There was a very convincing transformation story. The existing and new components were clearly delineated in a way the jury felt enhanced the architecture of the whole.
  • The inclusion of sketch details helped tie the conceptual thinking to the final product.

Live at the Garden (Memphis, TN)
archimania (Memphis, TN)

An outdoor performance venue is woven into an existing botanic garden, along with parking, entry gateways, ticketing, restrooms, an event facility, and backstage support areas.

Photos by Hank Mardukas Photography

Jury Comments:

  • This project was recognized as a successful assemblage of buildings that merged with the natural environment; the architecture acting as a frame to the various events that occurred there.
  • The jury appreciated the collection of parts that operated independently but were held together by the site and as an episodic series of events.

Woodard Residence (Memphis, TN)
archimania (Memphis, TN)

A personal residence for a developer on an unused piece of land left from his recently completed mixed-use development adjacent to the rail.

Photo by Hank Mardukas Photography

Jury Comments:

  • This project got the attention of the jury for a number of reasons. It very convincingly addressed the context head-on. It is all about place. Adjacent to a highway in a compromised piece of land, it is an architecture of accumulation.
  • The building draws in the energy of the site as it becomes an urban marker or relic.
    We felt the massing and articulation was very artful and just well-proportioned with energizing scale-shifts.
    The materials are simple and relate well to the forms of the architecture.

AIA’s Public Outreach Tools

Categories Advocacy, News, Resources, Uncategorized | Tagged , , ,

AIA National’s Board recently approved several initiatives that is intended to raise the visibility and understanding of architecture and the profession with targeted audiences. Take a look below at some of the latest developments:

Architect’s Voice Message Book

Do your part! Would you like to get involved in the public awareness campaign?

The greatest impact you can have is through face-to-face, one-on-one communication with potential clients, community leaders, local businesses and in your schools.

The Architect’s Voice message book has tested messages to improve how you and your peers describe to key audiences the value architects bring to any project.

Topic Architecture

Topic Architecture, also known as TopicA, is the AIA’s public-facing website to further show how great design can change lives.

The site will build awareness and consideration of architecture services among potential clients. As the leading edge for our public awareness efforts,

Topic Architecture will engage visitors with effective editorial content that’s easy to digest so that they can reach the decision stage to hire an architect. (

Learn more about Blueprint for Better here.

Gulf States Honor Awards Program – Call for Entries

Categories Design Awards, News | Tagged , ,

The AIA Gulf States Region Honor Awards Program celebrates the quality of Architecture in our region and pays tribute to our deserving Architects for their design excellence. Philip E. Black, AIA (Simonton Swaika Black Architects, Inc., Birmingham) is our Program Chair for the 2017 Honor Awards. Award recipients will be announced and awards presented at the Gulf States Regional Reception and Honor Awards Friday April 28, during the 2017 AIA National Convention in Orlando.

There are three steps to the entry process:

  1. Submit entry form, fee and classification by January 20, 2017.
  2. You will receive a Code Number and complete PowerPoint template for each entry via email.
  3. Submit your entry via UPLOAD by 5:00 p.m. on February 20, 2017. No submittals will be accepted via email.


For more information, please dowload the:  

Gulf States Honor Awards – Rules and Entry Form


Questions? Call Sheila Leggett at 615-254-1233.

POLL: Tennessee’s Top 25 “Must See”

Categories News, Resources, Uncategorized | Tagged , , ,

We need your help! USA Today Travel and AIA National are seeking Tennessee AIA members’ input on the 25 “Must See” buildings in the state of Tennessee that tourists shouldn’t miss! The projects can be award-winning architecture, projects of the century or even pieces designed by famous architects. It’s up to you!


We need your input compiling the top 25 that highlights the beauty of our state!  We will compile the results and hope that USA Today produces an article similar to this one: USA Today – 40 Must-See Structures in Scotland.