building of the year arch paper sunset

Building of the Year

As a would-have-been fourth generation carpenter, I gleaned my father’s and my grandfather’s appreciation for architecture early on in life.

If you don’t have a magazine like The Architect’s Newspaper in your arsenal, it’s a great way to cross-train regardless of your discipline. And if you’re not the artistic type, it’ll give you a deeper appreciation for the buildings you use every single day.

Arch paper started handing out their Best of Design awards. Well… “handing out” might be too loose of a term. The competition’s pretty fierce.

My favorite? Their Building of the Year category.

This year’s winner of the 2015 Building of the Year award was a school – Henderson Hopkins – apparently the first school build in Baltimore in over thirty years. The Rogers Partners who won the award had what the magazine calls a “modest” budget for its category. What they achieved was pretty incredible… and pretty symbolic of the city’s bit-by-bit revival ::

building of the year interior shot


You’ll notice in the next two images how they amplified the amount of common space the early childhood, lower school, and upper school all share. It’s a tiny step towards a more communal idea of our compartmentalized education system, but it’s a start. Reminds me of one-room school houses. They even named them “House 2,” “House 3,” etc.

This they achieved by taking out more than they put in. How does white space or the unsaid help bolster your work? ::

building of the year schematic

building of the year exterior shot of walkway building of the year second story


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