Architectural Excellence Design & COTE Awards
Opportunities and Benefits

Here are some opportunities that may influence your firm’s decision to enter work in the AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence Design & COTE Awards.


Re-submit Past Projects

If you’ve entered a project(s) in the AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence Design & COTE Awards in recent years and it is still eligible for submission, you are encouraged to consider resubmitting a project(s) through the submission platform. The process for populating past submissions to the current program and full eligibility requirements are found in Architectural Excellence Design & COTE Awards Call for Submissions.
Call for Submissions

Project Timeline Eligibility

Lacking recently completed projects in your portfolio that rise to your standard for entry in the awards program? Use this opportunity to take stock of your body of work going back five (5) years or repurpose and refine past submissions. Reference the call for submissions documentation on the design awards page for the current cutoff date.

Project Credit Eligibility

Partner on a project with another architecture firm? Projects entered by the submitting firm, as Architect of Record and/or Design Architect, must have at least one Principal that is a current AIA Pennsylvania architect member.

Repurpose Submission Compilations

Flexible minimum and maximum page count for the “Digital Project Binder” upload give applicants greater ease and the opportunity to repurpose for local chapter award submissions. The Digital Project Binder (PDF) must include a minimum of nine (9) pages and a maximum of twenty (20) pages (11 x 8.5 inches letter OR 13.33​​ x 7.5 inch​es​ widescreen) at 25 MB max. Entries in the “Small Project” category are the exception and may include a minimum of (5) pages.

COTE Awards Opt-In 

The COTE Awards is an opt-in program with a separate jury review and assessment. To be eligible for the Architectural Excellence COTE Awards, a project(s) must meet the eligibility criteria and be submitted to the Architectural Excellence Design Awards.

The Framework for Design Excellence Assessment, the criteria for the awards program, is based on the AIA’s Framework for Design Excellence. The assessment criteria is identical to AIA Philadelphia Design Awards “Framework to Design Excellence/Sustainability Form,” required for the AIA Philadelphia Design Awards. Reference the call for submissions for full details on project eligibility and the process for opting-in to the COTE Awards.


Showcase Your Work

All project submissions will be featured in the public-facing Design + COTE Awards Showcase & Recipient Gallery Archive, raising the visibility and profile of your work while highlighting the membership’s collective impact.
Showcase & Recipients

Refine and Repurpose the Pitch

Submitting your project is a great way to refine how you communicate about your work and use your project’s narrative in other elements of your marketing, communications, and business development.

Boost Employee, Team, and Client Morale

Participation in awards programs recognize and celebrate your team’s hard work, boosting employee morale as well as client and partner/consultant relationships.

Benchmark Project Performance

Participation in the opt-in COTE Awards, a separately juried program and opportunity for recognition, is an opportunity to get acquainted with AIA’s Framework for Design Excellence, a holistic approach to assess technical building performance metrics and how your designs address interdependence among people, buildings, infrastructure, and the environment.

Celebrate with the Local and Regional Community

AIA Pennsylvania and local chapter and firm partners will be hosting the awards broadcast debut and accompanying local viewing parties this November, providing several opportunities for our design community and industry professionals to gather to celebrate and foster knowledge, collaboration, partnerships, and project opportunities.