AIA Central States Announces 2023 Excellence in Design Awards

October 04, 2023

RDG Planning & Design has been recognized with multiple awards for culturally significant designs that honor and celebrate local communities.

The American Institute of Architects, Central States has recognized RDG with two 2023 Excellence in Design Awards at an awards ceremony on September 15, 2023, at the First National Center in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Conferred annually, the AIA Central States Excellence in Design Awards honor and celebrate work contributions by members of AIA in Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma.

RDG’s recognition includes citation awards for the Forest County Potawatomi Community Center (Large Commercial Architecture) in Crandon, Wisconsin, and the Lake Como Park Pavilion (Small Project) in Fort Worth, Texas.  

"This recognition underscores our commitment to delivering projects that are not only architecturally innovative but also deeply resonant with the communities they serve," said RDG Architect and Managing Principal, John Sova, AIA. "I'm very proud of the way our teams collaborated with clients to create hubs of revitalization and wellness that reflect the vibrant and diverse places in which they reside."

The Forest County Potawatomi Community Center serves as a hub for cultural education, recreation, athletic training, wellness and community events. RDG’s team worked closely with tribal leaders to develop a design that is both culturally significant and programmatically appropriate, weaving natural imagery into the building’s interior and exterior elements. The catalyst for building a new community center was the tribe’s need for a space where children of families impacted by drug and alcohol addiction could focus on wellness, education, rest and connection.

The Lake Como Community Park Pavilion creates a place for the diverse community surrounding the park to gather. Centered within the pavilion is the public installation “Do Something GOOD for Your Neighbor,” an original artwork commissioned by and included in the public art collection of the City of Fort Worth, Texas. The installation, comprised of weathering steel plates and carved wood benches, offers visitors a place to sit, rest and contemplate, while the shape invites visitors to gather and frames a gaze both outwards and inwards.

The AIA Central States Jury, comprised of architects from the Oklahoma Chapter, reviewed submissions from the five-state region. The jury included chair, Thomas Savory, FAIA, Jennifer Charzewski, AIA and Tiara Williams, AIA. Projects are judged based on a variety of features, including unique design, originality, extended use attributes, sustainability, budget and use of environmental surroundings. 

Written by Erin Van Zee, Communications Director