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11 Winning Projects Announced for 2018 NYC Excellence in Design Awards

11 Winning Projects Announced for 2018 NYC Excellence in Design Awards
11 Winning Projects Announced for 2018 NYC Excellence in Design Awards, Verizon Executive Education Center and Graduate Hotel / Snøhetta and James Corner Field Operations. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Verizon Executive Education Center and Graduate Hotel / Snøhetta and James Corner Field Operations. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

The New York City Public Design Commission and Mayor Bill de Blasio have announced the 11 projects selected as winners of their 2018 Awards for Excellence in Design. Established in 1983, the award has been bestowed annually to projects from the city’s five boroughs that “exemplify how innovative and thoughtful design can provide New Yorkers with the best possible public spaces and services and engender a sense of civic pride.”

The 2018 awards recognized projects which responded to the de Blasio Administration’s commitment to providing an “equitable, resilient, and diverse city for all New Yorkers.” All five New York boroughs feature in the awards, with schemes encompassing education, culture, art, and recreation.

Reflecting Pool / Quennell Rothschild & Partners. Image via New York City Public Design Commission New York State Pavilion Observation Towers and Tent of Tomorrow / Silman, Jan Hird . Image via New York City Public Design Commission Garrison Playground / Department of Parks & Recreation In-House Design. Image via New York City Public Design Commission The Studio Museum in Harlem / Adjaye Associates and Cooper Robertson. Image via New York City Public Design Commission + 12

These eleven winning schools, parks, libraries, museums, and artworks aren’t only beautiful – they enrich their communities by bringing revitalizing existing spaces and creating vibrant new ones.
-New York Mayor Bill de Blasio

Both built and unbuilt projects are considered for the award. Previous winners have included BIG + Starr Whitehouse’s 40th Police Precinct (2016), Studio Gang’s Fire Rescue 2 (2015), the Louis Kahn-designed Four Freedoms Park (2014), and Steven Holl’s Hunters Point Library (2011).

Below, we round up the winning schemes, complete with a short description from the New York City Public Design Commission.

Excellence in Design Winners

Aship, Aground, Anew by Saul Becker / Saul Becker and Studio Joseph

Aship, Aground, Anew by Saul Becker / Saul Becker and Studio Joseph. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Aship, Aground, Anew by Saul Becker / Saul Becker and Studio Joseph. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

Saul Becker’s painting for the new Snug Harbor Cultural Center Music Hall depicts an 18th-century sailing ship run aground and transformed by nature with mature trees growing out of its hull. The artwork is an apt representation of a Staten Island community founded in a maritime tradition that is finding new ground and fostering growth.

Brownsville Recreation Center / 1100 Architect and MNLA

Brownsville Recreation Center / 1100 Architect and MNLA. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Brownsville Recreation Center / 1100 Architect and MNLA. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

The rehabilitation of the Brownsville Recreation Center will transform an outdated 1950s structure into a vital neighborhood resource with renovated fitness areas, a pool, and multi-purpose classrooms. The revitalized center will provide the Brownsville community with enhanced programming and recreation for years to come.

Concert Grove Pavilion / Prospect Park Alliance In-House Design 

Concert Grove Pavilion / Prospect Park Alliance In-House Design. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Concert Grove Pavilion / Prospect Park Alliance In-House Design. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

Designed by Calvert Vaux in 1874, the Concert Grove Pavilion is an open-air shelter comprising eight cast iron columns supporting a decorative metal and wood roof with a stained-glass skylight. The restoration of the pavilion will repair water damage, reconstruct missing elements, and repaint the structure based on historic images, bringing new life to this charming historic gathering space.

Convergence by Shawn Smith / Shawn Smith and Snøhetta

Convergence by Shawn Smith / Shawn Smith and Snøhetta. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Convergence by Shawn Smith / Shawn Smith and Snøhetta. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

Inspired by the New York Public Library’s collection of 19th- and early 20th-century illustrations, artist Shawn Smith chose 20 local songbirds for his artwork in the new Westchester Square Branch Library. Each of the 100 sculptures will be constructed from individually painted pieces of basswood, resulting in a diverse mix of bright patterns, shapes, and colors.

Garrison Playground / Department of Parks & Recreation In-House Design

Garrison Playground / Department of Parks & Recreation In-House Design. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Garrison Playground / Department of Parks & Recreation In-House Design. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

As part of the Community Parks Initiative, the reconstruction of this park will benefit the previously underserved neighborhood of Mott Haven. With flexible spaces for a variety of uses, the park will become a nexus of community engagement and recreation for all age groups.

Hamilton Fish Park Branch Library / Rice+Lipka Architects and Starr Whitehouse Landscape Architects & Planners

Hamilton Fish Park Branch Library / Rice+Lipka Architects and Starr Whitehouse Landscape Architects & Planners. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Hamilton Fish Park Branch Library / Rice+Lipka Architects and Starr Whitehouse Landscape Architects & Planners. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

The renovation of this 1959 library will restore and renew a modernist structure with energy-efficient systems and resilient materials, transforming this civic structure into a light-filled, accessible and active facility that is visually connected to the community it serves.

New York State Pavilion Observation Towers and Tent of Tomorrow / Silman, Jan Hird Pokorny Associates, and L’Observatoire International

New York State Pavilion Observation Towers and Tent of Tomorrow / Silman, Jan Hird . Image via New York City Public Design Commission
New York State Pavilion Observation Towers and Tent of Tomorrow / Silman, Jan Hird . Image via New York City Public Design Commission

The rehabilitation of the 1964 World’s Fair New York State Pavilion will provide stabilization, restored lighting, and maintenance access that will lay the foundation for future preservation and potential adaptive reuse of these iconic structures.

Prototypical Kiosks for Citywide Plazas / Billings Jackson Design

Prototypical Kiosks for Citywide Plazas / Billings Jackson Design. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Prototypical Kiosks for Citywide Plazas / Billings Jackson Design. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

The prototypical plaza kiosks will provide a cost effective source of revenue for the continued maintenance of city plazas. The versatile design is aesthetically harmonious with the city’s street furnishings and will activate public spaces with amenities and lighting.

Reflecting Pool / Quennell Rothschild & Partners

Reflecting Pool / Quennell Rothschild & Partners. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Reflecting Pool / Quennell Rothschild & Partners. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

The reconstruction of the Reflecting Pool is the first phase of a larger project to adaptively repurpose a series of fountains from the 1964 World’s Fair. The design references the original use of the space as a water feature yet transforms the site into an enjoyable and sustainable focal point in the park.

The Studio Museum in Harlem / Adjaye Associates and Cooper Robertson

The Studio Museum in Harlem / Adjaye Associates and Cooper Robertson. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
The Studio Museum in Harlem / Adjaye Associates and Cooper Robertson. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

The Studio Museum’s new home will establish a distinguished architectural presence that celebrates the legacy of this critical cultural resource. Enlarged exhibition and program spaces will enhance the organization’s programming for Harlem residents and visitors from around the world.

Verizon Executive Education Center and Graduate Hotel / Snøhetta and James Corner Field Operations

Verizon Executive Education Center and Graduate Hotel / Snøhetta and James Corner Field Operations. Image via New York City Public Design Commission
Verizon Executive Education Center and Graduate Hotel / Snøhetta and James Corner Field Operations. Image via New York City Public Design Commission

As the northwest gateway to the Cornell Tech Campus, the education center and hotel will become an active and dynamic campus hub. The two buildings share a transparent podium that will house a mix of public and academic spaces, enlivening the exterior courtyard and campus and welcoming a diverse range of visitors from New York City and abroad.

To learn more about the award and see previous years' winners, visit the Public Design Commission's website, here.

News and project descriptions via NYC Public Design Commission

11 Projects Win NYC Public Design Commission's Excellence in Design Awards

The New York City Public Design Commission and Mayor Bill de Blasio have announced the 11 projects selected as winners of their 2017 Awards for Excellence in Design. Established in 1983, the award has been bestowed annually to projects from the city's five boroughs that "exemplify how innovative and thoughtful design can provide New Yorkers with the best possible public spaces and services and engender a sense of civic pride."

View the complete gallery

About this author
Cite: Niall Patrick Walsh. "11 Winning Projects Announced for 2018 NYC Excellence in Design Awards" 24 May 2018. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/895076/11-projects-winners-announced-for-2018-nyc-excellence-in-design-awards/> ISSN 0719-8884

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