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evolveEA Brings Home Many Accolades at AIA Pennsylvania Design Awards

December 16, 2020

We are proud to share our recent success at the 2020 AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence Design Awards. Of 140 submissions, only 18 projects were selected to receive an award by 2020’s Seattle-based jury. Our Etna Ecodistrict and Buffalo Rain Check 2.0 projects received Merit Awards in the category of Regional and Urban Design—the only projects in that category to be recognized this year. Our favorite quote from the jury that was said about both projects: “We want thousands of these.”

Etna Ecodistrict

The Etna EcoDistrict focuses on six quality of life areas that are manifest in place: water, mobility, air, energy, food, and equity and through a series of catalytic projects, Etna has demonstrated their commitment to carbon neutrality by the year 2050. The plan has already resulted in community cohesion that has proven durable during covid. The effort also yielded a new non-profit to steward the plan, initiation of a Community Library in a historic building, and the achievement of the world’s first EcoDistricts Certified Community.

Buffalo Rain Check 2.0

Like many combined systems, combined sewer overflows in Buffalo Sewer’s system cause wastewater to flow into the region’s streams and rivers, and Lake Erie. Green infrastructure is part of Buffalo’s solution to manage runoff, improve waterways, increase resiliency, and enhance quality of life in the city. Rain Check 2.0 identifies potential green infrastructure projects to reduce runoff from over 500 acres of impervious surface, fulfilling Buffalo Sewer’s obligations under the federal Long Term Control Plan (LTCP). The Opportunity Report summarizes the Rain Check 2.0 effort to identify opportunities for green infrastructure on sites within Buffalo Sewer’s priority combined sewer overflow basins, and includes recommendations for how green infrastructure can equitably and impactfully be deployed throughout the City.

Additional Recognition

In addition to the two Merit Awards, evolveEA was also recognized with an EPiC award for our commitment to supporting emerging professionals (thanks, Srinjoy, for the nomination!), and a Government Award was granted to our Principal and Cofounder Marc Mondor.

The statewide honors were celebrated on November 19th with the 4th annual AIA Pennsylvania Architectural Excellence Awards Broadcast debut. You can watch the recorded broadcast by clicking below, and keep an eye out for the following highlights:

Marc’s introduction and warm welcome as President of AIA PA (00:06 – 03:47)
EPiC Award (11:24 – 13:05) — evolveEA is one of 26 firms recognized for commitment to the development of emerging professionals.
Etna Ecodistrict (37:33 – 38:32) — Merit Award in the Regional and Urban Design category
Buffalo Rain Check 2.0 (40:36 – 42:02) — Merit Award in the Regional and Urban Design category


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