AIAS and Kawneer “Enlightening Libraries” Design Competition Winners Selected

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25 February, 2013

Students of Architecture Use Knowledge of Building Materials and Design to Create a Space That Emphasizes Natural Light, Sustainability, Community and Education

WASHINGTON, D.C. and NORCROSS, GA – The American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS) and Kawneer Company, Inc. recently announced the winners of their national student design competition, “Enlightening Libraries.” Laura Boykin, a graduate student from Clemson University, under the advisement of Ufuk Ersoy, was awarded first place and $3,000 for her design, “Mediascape: An Enlightened Library for Pendleton, SC.”


The competition, which is sponsored by Kawneer and administered by the AIAS, challenged students to investigate and design a public library while learning about building materials and sustainable design techniques. During the competition, participants were required to rework a dated public library and create a facility that is an effectively urbanized collaborative community space appealing to all generations and integrating the most recent technologies. Utilizing Kawneer’s high-performing products – from curtain wall and entrances to windows and storefront framing systems – students designed efficient and new-age libraries that embraced atmospheres of enlightenment and learning.


The competition jury was comprised of four architectural professionals: Mark Baker, AIA, NCARB, Principal, Lantz-Boggio Architects, P.C.; E.J. Meade, AIA, Design Principal, Arch11; Andrew G. Nielsen, AIA, PE, LEED AP, Principal, AndersonMasonDale Architects; and Melanie Hennigan, AIA, LEED AP, Principal, Grimm+Parker. Jurors evaluated several hundred submissions for their ingenuity and originality as well as design clarity, appropriate use of materials and the ability to create an aesthetic that compliments the community and environment. Winning submissions included:


Laura Boykin, Clemson University, “Mediascape: An Enlightened Library for Pendleton, South Carolina” – First Place ($3000)
Boykin’s library design proposed a transparent, cutting-edge media center developed to embrace its role as a “repository of knowledge linking past, present and future.” Set in Pendleton, South Carolina, the new library reconfigures the existing program to a “transformative media ribbon” and a “day to night social hub” for the community. For increased efficiency and daylighting, the design incorporates Kawneer’s 1600 UT™ (Ultra Thermal) Curtain Wall System and Versoleil™ SunShades as well as AA®425 Thermal Entrances. One juror commented, “Excellent, thorough thinking of space and tectonics. Wonderful presentation and use of Kawneer materials.”


Nick Schwaller, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, “Enlightening Los Osos” – Second Place ($1500)
Of “Enlightening Los Osos,” one juror said, “Good form and energy of this design. It could very well be adapted to the future.” This student selected Los Osos, California for the site of his design. The library, designed to embrace the environment and maximize views of its natural surroundings, features Kawneer’s 1600 UT™ (Ultra Thermal) Curtain Wall System as well as the AA®3350 IsoPort™ Windows, AA®250 Thermal Entrances and AA®3200 ISOWEB® Sliding Doors, amongst others.


Sam Pruitt, Clemson University, “Hyperlocal” – Third Place ($750)
Situated in Pendleton, South Carolina, at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, “Hyperlocal” is designed to serve the town as a library and a community center. The project capitalizes on the site’s natural assets and physical environment. Using windows, curtain wall and sunshades from Kawneer, Hyperlocal addresses the specific needs of the town by creating a light atmosphere that unites learning and community. “The design was elegantly massed and sited with a wonderful use of daylighting,” said one juror.
Honorable mentions ($500) were awarded to: Maria Mercedes Serrano Monroig, Universidad de Puerto Rico, ”Carnegie Library;” Kyle Perry, Alfred State University, ”The Aperture Public Library;” and Amanda Gann, University of Tennessee Knoxville, “ACTiVATED ARCHiVE.”


Winning entries can be viewed at and will be published in the Spring 2013 issue of Crit: Journal of the AIAS. In addition, they will be displayed at the 2013 AIA National Convention and Design Exposition in Denver, CO, June 20-22, 2013 and at AIAS FORUM convention in Chicago, IL, December 29, 2013-January 1, 2014. For more information on AIAS, please visit  To learn more about Kawneer, please visit

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