Architecture is a medium that affects everyone. More and more innovative projects are being created that aren't getting the recognition they deserve. That's why we at Architizer, one of the largest architecture websites, launched the A+ Architecture Awards. It's a totally new contest that opens the floor to individuals and companies who are influencing all of us—whether directly interested in the field or not.
We're putting out a call for proposals for people that are not only exploring how to design amazing structures, but also architectural projects that examine the economic crisis, social issues, mobility—even the weather. We want to see how people address these larger social issues and incorporate them into their designs.
We didn't think that architecture needed another awards program stuck in the architectural echo chamber. Instead we wanted the A+ awards to be the biggest, most visible, most awesome awards program that the field has ever seen. So we partnered with the producers of The Webby Awards, the ultimate annual internet awards, and Recognition Media, the team behind the Webby's.
Then we invited 200+ jurors from diverse fields including product design, technology, media (like GOOD!), development (the people who actually hire architects!), cultural leaders, key developers, brand managers and other business luminaries that commission and support great architecture across the globe. The jurors include John Edelman of Design Within Reach, Jason Millhouse of the Ritz Carlton, GOOD's co-founder and creative director Casey Caplowe, Roy Kim of Extell Development, Charles Adler of Kickstarter, Barry Bergdoll of MoMA, and superstar photographer Iwan Baan. From the architecture community, we’ve rounded up an impressive bunch: Steven Holl, Charles Renfro, Bjarke Ingels, Ben van Berkel, and David Rockwell, among others.
Determined to be inclusive, we’ve created a program that offers something for everyone. There will be 50 categories broken into two sections: Typology Awards and Plus Awards. Typological categories, from residential to institutional, are open to buildings completed in the past three years. The Plus Awards, open to built and unbuilt work, highlight architecture’s role in serving the needs of contemporary society. Here’s where you’ll find more open-ended categories such as +Weather, +Economic Crisis, and +Urban Transformation. The public will be able to review the ways in which these architectural projects have been modified in response to these issues. For example, the +Weather projects will address concerns such as rising sea levels, and natural disasters. We all recall Katrina and other devastating hurricanes—we'll see some of the most innovative projects that came in response.
By May 16, 2013, we'll be celebrating the winners of the awards at a gala in New York City, where each one will receive a bespoke trophy designed by Snarkitecture. We’ll also be announcing a Firm of the Year, Building of the Year, and Client of the Year.
The early entry deadline for the Architizer A+ Awards is November 9, 2012. To enter, register at www.architizerawards.com.