Just ahead of Earth Day, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Committee on the Environment (COTE) has revealed the latest crop of projects to receive its most prestigious honor: the COTE Top Ten Award.
Now in its 27th year, the award program recognizes projects—including new buildings, restorations/renovations, interior architecture, and urban/regional plans—located across the world designed by U.S.-licensed architects that “set the standard for design excellence” by meeting the AIA’s stringent criteria for “social, economic, and ecological value” while demonstrating advance performance in ten key areas focused on energy, water, well-being, equity, ecosystems, adaptability to climate change, and on.
This year’s awardees were selected by a four-member jury panel composed of Katie Ackerly (chair), David Baker Architects, Oakland, California; Julian Owens, Jacobs, Arlington, Virginia; Seonhee Kim, Design Collective, Baltimore; and Avinash Rajagopal, editor in chief of Metropolis.
With winners including a transit-oriented affordable housing complex, a bioswale-flanked mid-rise office building, a net-zero carbon environmental and science learning center, and an urban park nestled along the San Antonio River, the 2023 COTE Top Ten is a decidedly California-heavy bunch—projects in San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, and Hillsborough were all recognized—while other awardees can be found in New England, Texas, and beyond.
The full list of 2023 COTE Top Ten awardees is below:
Casa Adelante 2060 Folsom by Mithun with Y.A. Studio | San Francisco
Confluence Park by Lake|Flato Architects + Matsys | San Antonio
DPR Sacramento Zero Net Energy Office by SmithGroup | Sacramento
Harvard University Science and Engineering Complex by Behnisch Architekten | Boston
John W. Olver Transit Center by Charles Rose Architects | Greenfield, Massachusetts
RIDC Mill 19: Buildings A&B by MSR Design | Pittsburgh
Science and Environmental Center by Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects | Hillsborough, California
UC San Diego North Torrey Pines Living & Learning Neighborhood by HKS Inc. & Safdie Rabines Architects | San Diego
Watershed by Weber Thompson | Seattle
Westwood Hills Nature Center by MN|HGA Architects and Engineers | St. Louis Park, Minnesota