AIA Announces 2016 COTE Top Ten Green Awards

Nearly half of the Bioscience Research Building in Galway, Ireland, operates without mechanical ventilation. Image courtesy of AIA.

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and its Committee on the Environment (COTE) have announced the winners of the 20th annual COTE Top Ten Awards. The awards honor architectural projects that best reflect sustainability and ecological design.

The 2016 COTE Top Ten Awards winners are:

Boston-based firm Payette teamed up with Irish firm Reddy Architecture to complete the Bioscience Research Building (BRB) in Galway, Ireland. 45 percent of the BRB is able to function without mechanical ventilation thanks to a natural ventilation system.

Pittsburgh-based firm The Design Alliance Architects is being recognized for the Center for Sustainable Landscapes (CSL). Designed to become the greenest building in the world, CSL is the first and only building to meet the four highest green certifications.


The Center for Sustainable Landscapes in Pittsburgh. Image by Denmarsh Photography.

San Francisco’s LEED Platinum Certified Exploratorium at Pier 15 takes advantage of the pier’s natural light exposure and the 800-foot-long roof, which is installed with a 1.3-megawatt photovoltaic array. Designed by local firm EHDD, the interactive science museum also uses bay water for cooling and heating.


The Exploratorium at Pier 15 in San Francisco. Image by Bruce Damonte Photography.

The approximately 84,000-square-foot retail and grocery store H-E-B at Mueller in Austin, Texas, has received LEED Gold certification and is designated as a 4-Star Austin Energy Green Building. The design by Lake|Flato Architects, H-E-B Design + Construction, and Selser Schaefer Architects includes optimized daylighting, LED lights, a solar array, and reclaimed water usage for landscape irrigation. Lake|Flato is also being honored for the Dixon Water Foundation Josey Pavilion in Decatur, Texas, which promotes healthy watersheds through sustainable land management.


The H-E-B at Mueller in Austin, Texas. Image by Casey Dunn.


The Dixon Water Foundation Josey Pavilion in Decatur, Texas. Image by Casey Dunn.


Designed by San Francisco firm Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects, the Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation in Berkeley, California, stands out as a model of low-carbon living, cutting its energy usage down to 90 percent below the national average. Leddy Maytum Stacy is recognized again for its collaborative design with Saida + Sullivan Design Partners on the highly efficient Rene Cazenave Apartments in San Francisco.


The Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation in Berkeley, California. Image by Patrik Argast.


The Rene Cazenave Apartments in San Francisco. Image by Tim Griffith.

New York–based ZGF Architects’ design of San Diego’s J. Craig Venter Institute earned LEED Platinum certification and became the first net-zero energy laboratory in the U.S. Harley Ellis Devereaux’s 9,500-square-foot West Branch of the Berkeley Public Library is 95-percent daylit and is also California’s first certified Living Building Challenge zero net energy public library. 


The J. Craig Venter Institute in San Diego. Image by Nick Merrick.


The Berkeley Public Library, West Branch, in Berkeley, California. Image by David Wakeley Photography.

The Visual Arts Facility at the University of Wyoming is equipped with one of the largest evacuated tube installations in the U.S. The design by Portland, Oregon-based firm Hacker Architects and Wyoming’s Malone Belton Abel PC was based off studies of the sun’s interaction with interior spaces.


The Visual Arts Facility at the University of Wyoming in Laramie. Image by Lara Swimmer.

Honorees will be awarded at this year’s AIA Convention in Philadelphia, May 19–21.