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2016 Excellence in Design Awards 

Merit Award

Area 51


Category: Single Family Residential

Firm: Thomas Gifford Architect

Architect: Thomas Gifford AIA

Builder: Prull Custom Builders

Photographer: Kirk Gittings

Jury Comments:

In this residential project the jury appreciated the architect’s approach to the landscape and the home’s outdoor spaces and site strategy – they noted the strong exterior spaces and details.  The jury also appreciated the well-executed site plan. 


These elements were reinforced on the project’s interior, which also had a series of well-designed spaces and incorporated daylighting effectively in the architecture. The project has a series of self-sustaining and energy-efficient elements that the jury responded to, both in the architecture and the gardens.  

Merit Award



Category: Remodel/Adaptive Reuse

Firm: Architectural Alliance

Architect: Eric Enfield, AIA

Owner: Clare Maraist

Builder: Prull Custom Builders

Photographer: Kate Russell

Jury Comments:

This remodel / adaptive reuse project was a successful transition from a former school building into private residences.  The original school building was designed in the 1920’s by architect John Gaw Meem.   The current architect was able to restore some of the historic clarity to this building which had been eroded over time after numerous additions.          


The jury recognized that while the exterior didn’t change significantly, the architects were successful with the renovation and the interiors, with laying out the residential spaces and developing appropriate proportions and editing carefully.


Bunkowski Residence


Category: Single Family Residential

Firm: Hoopes + Associates

Architects: Craig Hoopes AIA and Andrea Caraballo

Contractor: Prull Custom Builders

Photographer: Daniel Nadelbach

Jury Comments:

Within a neutral palette the architects successfully developed a high desert architecture with sweeping roof planes, and a number of indoor – outdoor connections in this project. 


There was a series of effective choices in the development of the plan and the use of courtyards, with the jury noting the interior courtyard as a particularly strong space. 


This courtyard, with its pocketed sliding doors, provided a seamless connection from the living space to the landscape.  The jury also noted the well executed interiors which complemented the architecture.


Meow Wolf

Category: Remodel/Adaptive Reuse

Firm: Autotroph

Architect: Alexander Dzurec AIA

Owner: Meow Wolf

Contractor: Constructive Assets + Ragano & Careccio Inc.

Photographer: Alexander Dzurec

Jury Comments:

In this project the jury saw a radical transformation of a vacant bowling alley building that could potentially lead to the transformation of a district in the city.  Some of Meow Wolf’s 20,000 SF spaces were particularly well-designed and the project was successful in the way that art, architecture and interactive experience merged as one.


The jury felt there was evidence in the submission of a successful collaboration between artists,  architect , the client and even the neighborhood and the jury noted the installations were powerful in terms of design elements, scale, materials, lighting and spatial quality.

2016 Design Awards Jury

John Sparano, FAIA

Anne Mooney, AIA

Eric Strain, AIA

Lee Swanson, AIA LEED AP



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