Recognize Architectural Excellence | Call for 2020 Awards Submissions & Nominations


Visit the New Submission Site to Recognize Excellence

Celebrate your firm and member accomplishments with the 2020 AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence Awards programs! The new 2020 AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence Awards submission site is open.

With the understanding that everyone is busier than ever juggling new personal and professional obligations, AIA Pennsylvania has adjusted the timeline for the Architectural Excellence Design & COTE Awards programs to extend the submission deadline to September 17th at 11:59 pm. Existing submission(s) and/or additional submission(s) will be accepted through the extended deadline.

Special Awards nominations will be accepted through 11:59 pm Thursday, September 3, 2020.

Design & COTE Awards

About the Design Awards

The AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence Design Awards awards celebrate the exemplary design achievements of members and impact of architecture regardless of budget, size, style, or type.

Projects on hold? Still not sure which project to submit to this year’s program? 

Firms are encouraged to submit projects that have been completed (occupied) or commissioned (unbuilt category) going back the last five (5) years to 2015.

What’s new? 

Audio project narrative optional
The Design Awards Audio Project Narrative is optional for 2020.

Hardship submission fee
For firms/architects who are experiencing financial hardship as the result of the pandemic, AIA Pennsylvania is offering a discounted entry fee (for 2020 only). For more details, review the Design Awards Call for Submissions.

Alignment with Philadelphia and Pittsburgh Design Awards
With the exception of showcasing the 10 “Framework for Design Excellence” measures, AIA Pittsburgh has adopted AIA Pennsylvania’s digital project presentation binder (pdf) requirements to make it easier to participate in both programs. Submissions to Design Pittsburgh due Sunday, August 9th.

For AIA Philadelphia members, please note the AIA Pennsylvania Framework for Design Excellence Assessment for the COTE Awards is courtesy of AIA Philadelphia/Pennsylvania COTE leaders and exactly mirrors “Sustainability Recognition Form” required for AIA Philadelphia Design Awards program.

review the call for Design Award submissions & start a submission(s)

The 2020 Architectural Excellence Design Awards is made possible by our generous sponsors and partners. Thank you to our preferred partners:

  • Bell Insurance, a full service insurance agency specializing in serving businesses as well as individuals
  • Fenner & Esler, provider of insurance and risk management for Architects and Engineers
  • Milber Makris, providing a wide range of legal services tailored to design professionals with offices in Berwyn,
  • Offit Kurman, construction law experts specializing in solving professional practice and business challenges for architects and engineers. Office locations in Harrisburg, Philadelphia, and Plymouth Meeting

About the COTE Awards

The AIA Pennsylvania Committee on the Environment (COTE) and Committee on Design (COD) formerly the Awards Committee are proud to announce the addition of the Architectural Excellence COTE Awards to the prestigious Architectural Excellence Awards program.

Projects selected for this honor will have exhibited excellence in the AIA Framework for Design Excellence measures that indicate how buildings perform for the health and wellness of the occupants, communities, and the environment(s) they serve.

In order to be eligible for this year’s Architectural Excellence COTE Awards, a project(s) must meet the eligibility criteria for the 2020 Architectural Excellence Design Awards and must be submitted simultaneously to the Design Awards program. The complimentary COTE Awards submission is a drop-down option within the Design Awards submission form. For more details, review the COTE Awards Call for Submissions.

Please disregard the link to download the assessment sheet within the 2020 Architectural Excellence COTE Awards Call for Submissions. As of September 3rd, a new assessment sheet that accommodates for a full cell view of the 80-word framework narratives is available to download here and updated within the COTE Awards submission form for download.

AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence COTE Awards are brought to you by Atlantic Engineering Services



review the call for COTE Award submissions & start a submission(s)

Meet the Jurors

Projects submitted to the COTE Awards will have two opportunities for recognition – a Design Award and a COTE Award – reviewed by two separate juries.

Meet 2020 Design Awards head juror, Tom Kundig, FAIA, RIBA. This year’s COTE Awards jury will feature members of the AIA Seattle COTE.

Why submit?

Celebrate your team’s work
Your project will be part of AIA Pennsylvania’s first online showcase promoted to architecture enthusiasts from the design industry and beyond including industry partners, press, and legislators.

All submissions to the Design and COTE Awards will be featured in the 2020 AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence Submissions Showcase highlighting the membership’s collective impact.

Refine your pitch & build buzz about your firm
Submitting your project is a great way to hone how you communicate about your work. Use your firm’s recognition to leverage coverage of you and your projects in magazines and journals that are seen by peers and potential clients.

Join leaders from Bohlin Cywinski Jackson next Thursday, August 13th for “Secrets to Design Awards Success“. They will be sharing how they leverage the award submission process to develop compelling project narratives and presentations – no matter the project budget or size!

Build respect from peers and clients
Recognition from a panel of carefully chosen jurors adds to your firm’s credibility.

Put your canceled projects to work
If you’ve got a great project that never made it out of the design phase, don’t let it go to waste, submit it in the Un-built Category*.

*Projects yet to be realized or canceled. These projects must have been commissioned by a client within the last five years.

Special Awards

Nominate contributions to the architecture profession!

AIA Pennsylvania is accepting member nominations for the 2020 Architectural Excellence Special Awards. These awards recognize significant achievements by members, non-members, civic and government leaders, allied professionals, and firms who contribute to the built environment and the advancement of the profession in the Commonwealth.

Open Special Awards categories include:

  • Associate Award
  • Emerging Professional Award
  • Raymond J. Sinagra Allied Trades Award
  • Contribution to the Profession by a Non-Architect Award
  • The Impact Designer Award
  • The Government Award
  • The Medal of Distinction
  • The 50 Year Timeless Architecture Award
  • The Architecture Firm Award

Review the REVISED Special Awards Call for Nominations for more details on eligibility and nomination criteria.

review the Special Awards call for nominations & start a nomination(s)

Meet the Special Awards Nomination Commmittee

Jeff Goldstein, FAIA, LEED AP | Special Awards Nomination Committee Chair
Bob Kelly AIA, IDSA | Committee on Design Chair
Bill Bates, FAIA
Anne Chen, AIA, LEED AP
Chris Dawson, AIA
Maggie McManus, AIA, MFA, NCARB
Elysia Mikkelsen, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Marc Mondor, AIA, LEED Fellow, USGBC Faculty, WELL AP
Jayne Spector, ASLA

AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence Special Awards are brought to you by Langan Engineering.



AIA Pennsylvania’s Emerging Professionals Award is brought to you by Turner Construction.