ISA’s ‘The Block’ Recognized with AIA Housing Award

Philadelphia-based ISA – Interface Studio Architects‘ project “The Block” is one of only ten exceptional residential designs selected for an American Institute of Architects (AIA) 2023 Housing Award.

The Block, recognized in the “Mixed-Use Community Connection” category, bridges an existing gap between walkable urban fabric and suburban big-box surface parking. The building opens unexpected views and reconnects de-activated urban edges with fresh pedestrian experiences. An unusual approach to circulation takes cues from Philadelphia’s rowhouse fabric, minimizing interior corridors and instead relying on an elevated, landscaped deck as the primary access for upper-level walk-ups.

In 2022, “The Block” was one of three projects honored with a Silver Medal, the highest level of commendation conveyed by AIA Pennsylvania’s Architectural Excellence Design Awards program.

AIA’s Housing Awards program, now in its 23rd year, was established to recognize the best in housing design for new construction, renovations and restorations. Projects were selected from eight possible categories: one- and two-family custom residences; one- and two-family production homes; multifamily housing; specialized housing; excellence in affordable housing; mixed-use community connection; community-engaged design; and universal dwelling design.

This year’s recipients were selected by a five-person jury that evaluated entries relative to the AIA Framework for Design Excellence, which represents the defining principles of excellent design in the 21st century. Specifically, the jury looked at whether designs are sustainable, affordable, durable, innovative, socially impactful, meeting client needs as well as addressing the natural and built contexts.

Visit AIA’s website for more information on the winning projects.