The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) have announced the winners of the fourth-annual AIA COTE Top Ten for Students awards. This year, the design and ideas competition—which is open to upper-level undergraduate and graduate students at ASCA member schools in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico—was run in collaboration with Architecture 2030, and had a special focus on responsive design that takes into account the impact that climate change will have on cities in the future. Projects were evaluated using the same 10 measures that are featured in the professional COTE Top Ten Awards (the winners of which were also announced last week), which include: integration, community, ecology, water, economy, energy, wellness, resources, change, and discovery. The student projects were also asked to focus on zero-emissions, adaptation, and resiliency.

Both the students and faculty sponsors receive $2,000 per winning project; each project also receives a stipend to send one student to the AIA Conference on Architecture in New York this June, where the winning projects will be on display. As part of this year's collaboration with Architecture 2030, the students will also be offered paid summer internships at firms in the U.S. and Canada that specialize in sustainable design.

This year's jury included Karin Bjorkman, a 2016–2017 COTE Student winner and an associate architect at Nola | Van Peursem Architects in Huntsville, Ala.; Thomas FIsher, Assoc. AIA, a professor and the Dayton Hudson Chair in Urban Design at the University of Minnesota School of Architecture in Minneapolis and the director of the Minnesota Design Center; Jeanne Gang, FAIA, founding principal of Studio Gang in Chicago; Chris Flint Chatto, Assoc. AIA, a principal at ZGF Architects in Portland, Ore.; and Justin Brown, a director at MASS Design Group in Boston.

The Award Winners

Known Unknowns: Dead Ends Aren't Dead
Students: Bianca Lin, Joshua Park, and Wilson Fung, California College of the Arts
Faculty Sponsor: Janette Kim, California College of the Arts

Juror comments: This unorthodox project stood out for its progressive policy proposal, which embraces the spirit of the competition. The students embraced the notion of time, which is important to environmental efforts escalating the project beyond the 10 measures. The graphic design of the submissions is beautiful and memorable. By retrofitting existing houses and inserting new typologies, this project proposes long-term economic stability and solutions to sea level rise.

Austen Goodman

Studio M: A Template for Sustainability and Wellness in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania
Student: Austen Goodman, Savannah College of Art and Design
Faculty Sponsor: Alice Guess, Savannah College of Art and Design

Juror comments: This well-rounded winning project shows a firm grounding in reality. It displays a good understanding of the 10 measures, with drawings and statistics to embellish every criteria. The building is believable, convincing and could be built in the real world today.

Brie Jones

Prescriptive Hydrologies
Student: Brie Jones, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona
Faculty Sponsor: Pablo La Roche, Assoc. AIA, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona

Juror comments: This project stood out for its creative use of water, discovering intelligent and creative new ways of deploying water. The student’s diagrams are strong and show a commendable view at larger environmental issues. The scuba tanks are an entertaining idea on user experience which could be expanded.

Mary Demro

The Fourth Place: Sharing Sustainability
Student: Mary Demro, Montana State University
Faculty Sponsors: Steven P. Juroszek, AIA, Thomas McNab, and Jaya Mukhopadhyay, Montana State University

Juror comments: This well-researched winning project has detailed diagrams and a beautiful graphic representation. It proposes a slightly utopian plan, that is a good social proposition in which people can have their major needs met without traveling. The artistic style of this eye-catching projects has exceptional detail and content, clearly detailing its environmental impact.

Amy Santimauro, Katelynn Smith, Joel Bohlmeyer

Fabricating Wellness
Students: Amy Santimauro, Katelynn Smith, and Joel Bohlmeyer, University of Oregon
Faculty Sponsor: Brook W. Muller, University of Oregon

Juror comments: The jurors were impressed with this winning project which included a production cycle within the building. Water grows the bamboo, which is then used as the primary building material. The student’s emphasis on renewable energy sources, natural ventilation, and sustainable materials is a clever process and program. It shows a good urban prototype by focusing on mixed-use design.

Caleb Freeze; Michelle Kleva

Pier 55: South Philadelphia Community Center
Students: Caleb Freeze and Michelle Kleva, Marywood University
Faculty Sponsors: Miguel Calvo Salve and Russell B. Roberts, AIA, Marywood University

Juror comments: This winning project brings an interesting and dynamic perspective to South Philadelphia, with a Community Center on a pier over the Delaware River. The building integrates systems, wetlands and architecture into one cohesive language that makes sense in terms of performance. The students created a superb user experience and place to explore.

Nicholas Scribner; Clare Hacko

Students: Nicholas Scribner and Clare Hacko, California College of the Arts
Faculty Sponsor: Evan Jones, California College of the Arts

Juror comments: This interesting study brings attention to climate change and rising sea levels by imagining a floating community in the Maldives. The students understood how to work with a different ground planes and included an exploration of what it would be like if you could see a building from below. Above ocean the design is a simple modern style, while underwater “bladders” create ballast and an ocean microecosystem.

City Centre Glassworks: An Adaptive Reuse Workshop and Experimentation Facility
Student: Justin Yan, Carleton University
Faculty Sponsors: Sheryl Boyle and Claudio Sgarbi, Carleton University

Juror comments: This adaptive reuse project utilizes the heat from making glass to warm the building and save on energy; a superb adaptation for [Ottawa's] climate. The buildings programs and systems are well designed and tailored for each other. A wonderful example of this is the rising mist, created from residual heat, brings an element of delight to the project. The architectural exploration is plausible and grounded in reality.

Harrison Polk, Madison Polk

Interconnect: Connecting Paths, Connecting Programs, Connecting People
Students: Harrison Polk & Madison Polk, Clemson University
Faculty Sponsors: Ulrike Heine, Ufuk Ersoy, and David Franco, Clemson University

Juror comments: This is a sophisticated winning project that shows a promising urban design. The students used the 10 measures to create a well-rounded project. The endeavor to address larger social issues and legal services for refugees are commendable and respected.

Energy Commons: A Hypothetical Replacement for Gas Stations
Student: Buddy Burkhalter, University of Washington
Faculty Sponsors: David Strauss, AIA, and Louisa Iarocci, University of Washington

Juror comments: This winning project proposes an interesting mixed-use, energy conservation theory: How can people productively use their time while their car is being serviced? Reinventing gas stations and other auto-centric building types will be significant as we re-think the way we live with cars. The students integrated the urban relationship with the driver experience and additional consideration to the non-driver will show a further elevation of the project.