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4 New A+Award Categories Celebrate Architecture for a Changing World

Architizer is pleased to announced four new A+Awards Plus Categories for 2021. The Early Entry Deadline for the 9th Annual A+Awards is fast approaching — submit before January 29th for early bird pricing!  

In the past year, societal change accelerated at a rate not seen for generations, while the pace of our daily lives paradoxically slowed like never before. Over the course of 2020, leaders looked to architectural and urban design as both cause and solution for the many challenges that arose: we saw designers respond to various crises with innovation, while cities pedestrianized at a previously unimaginable rate.

Meanwhile, with increasing time spend at home and its immediate surroundings, we gained greater appreciation for — and, sometimes, formed astute criticisms of — previously overlooked details that play important roles in our living spaces. With design on the forefront of discussions related to the climate and global health crises, the multi-scale impact of architecture has never been more apparent.

Architizer's A+Awards Plus Categories

Architizer's A+Awards Plus Categories

New River Train Observation Tower by Virginia Tech Center for Low-Carbon Structures and Systems, Radford, Virginia. Jury Winner, 2020 A+Awards, Details – Plus – Architecture +New Materials

Architecture’s crucial role in mediating between social and material worlds is often eclipsed by more its easily identifiable function in providing programmatic solutions. Yet, design does not exist in the vacuum of the studio, and Architizer’s A+Awards Plus Categories allows architectural firms to gain recognition specifically for their larger societal engagements.

The Plus Categories are subdivided into two distinct scales. On a micro-scale, the Detail categories focus on specific building features and material applications that, independent of program, are often preconditions for formal and spatial exploration. For example:

  • Architecture +Brick
  • Architecture +Ceilings
  • Architecture +Facades
  • Architecture +Glass
  • Architecture +Stairs

Meanwhile, the macro-scale of the Concept categories celebrate architectural responses to global issues, technological innovation and societal evolution. This includes, but is not limited to, concepts such as:

  • Architecture +Collaboration
  • Architecture +Light
  • Architecture +Prefab
  • Architecture +Renovation
  • Architecture +Sustainability

In response to the immense challenges facing the world in 2021, Architizer is pleased to announce four new Plus Concept categories aimed at celebrating architects and projects that are designing for a better and more resilient world. We’ve outlined them in more detail below.

CURA by Carlo Ratti Associati, Turin, Italy. Jury Winner, 2020 A+Awards, Concepts – Plus – Architecture +For Good

1. Architecture +Health

The global pandemic has strained healthcare systems and shed light on potential weaknesses in home, office and school designs. From temporary healthcare facilities to outdoor dining pavilions, architects’ quick thinking and rapid project execution have offered crucial lifelines, in many senses of the word. This category rewards projects designed in response to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. It is not limited to healthcare facilities and, as a Plus Category, transcends typology in order to celebrate a broad rang of projects aimed at bettering the health of their inhabitants.

A+Awards Plus Categories

How to Become an Industry Leader in Specialized Design Areas

Pylonesque by Pareid and INDA (International Program in Design and Architecture), Chulalongkorn University, Thailand. Popular Winner, 2020 A+Awards, Concepts – Plus – Architecture +Water

2. Architecture +Environment

As climate change continues to accelerate at an alarming pace, the distinction between natural and manmade disaster is increasingly blurred. Vulnerable populations now rely on a similar melding of natural and built environment. Resilient design can serve as a crucial line of defense against flooding, forest fires, hurricanes, and other disasters; it can also help to preserve and protect the disappearing natural world. This category celebrates projects that respond to these various environmental threats.

A+Awards Plus Categories

How to Become an Industry Leader in Specialized Design Areas

SYNTHESIS – CUSTOM CONCRETE WALL PANELS by EDG NYC, New York, NY. Jury and Popular Winner, 2020 A+Awards, Concepts – Plus – Architecture +Technology

3. Architecture +New Technology

Pioneering architecture is rarely limited to aesthetic expression — more often, innovative appearance is linked to emerging technology. From BIM, generative design and parametric software to 3D printers, additive manufacturing, drones, and robots, there has never been a wider range of high tech tools and processes available to architects. More a means than ends, the application of such technologies often results in projects that better respond to todays challenges such as sustainability or emergency response. This category awards projects that harness such emerging technologies in their design and/or construction.

A+Awards Plus Categories

How to Become an Industry Leader in Specialized Design Areas

Fass School and Teachers’ Residences by Toshiko Mori Architect, Senegal. Jury Winner, 2020 A+Awards, Institutional – Primary & High Schools

4. Architecture +Low Cost Design

One of Architizer’s driving goals is to encourage the appreciation and development of meaningful architecture and the products that make it possible, no matter the budget. This category is dedicated to economically efficient design, especially for projects built in places where affordable design and low cost construction benefits local development. Such budgetary constraints often nurture local economies, can empower inhabitants, and lead to passive climatic solutions, among many other social benefits that are worth celebrating.

Parking Garage Facade P22a at the Cologne Exhibition Centre by wulf architekten, Cologne, Germany. Jury Winner, 2020 A+Awards, Details – Plus – Architecture +Facades

By highlighting the broader social context that architecture operates within, as well as placing focus on consequential design details, Architizer’s A+Awards Plus Categories awards architectural firms for design specialities that transcend program or typology.

Whether you have a diverse portfolio united by a niche design approach, or a single project that stands out for more than just its function, this is your chance to be recognized by a global audience of 400+ million and to become an industry leader in your specialized area. Remember, most projects only apply to a single Typology Category, but still may be eligible for several of the Plus Categories. Since there is no limit to the number of categories a project can be submitted to and it is possible to win multiple awards, the more categories you enter, the better your chances!

Click the button below to set up your application and begin preparing your project materials for submission this year — and good luck from the whole team at Architizer.

Enter the 9th Annual A+Awards

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