Halfway through 2020 … what a year so far. I know I’m not the first to say that; I’m sure you’ve heard that, or some version of it, from plenty of others. I think we can all agree, it’s been a tough six months on all sorts of levels. But I’m not here to be negative. I’ve pretty much had it up to my ears with negativity. I think it’s time to look for those silver linings (really, they are out there). So for today’s blog, which you’re likely reading right before a holiday, I’m going to just be positive and tell you about some exciting news.

If you’ve had a look at the June USGlass magazine you saw that the industry Design Awards launched last year are back. There was such a tremendous response to the inaugural awards in 2019 and we were overwhelmed by the quality of projects that were submitted, so I’m excited to see what 2020 will bring. And based on projects that were completed over the past year I expect this to be a tough competition.

The awards will again recognize excellence in the use of architectural glass and glazing. These awards will highlight exemplary uses of glass and glazing products in both interior and exterior applications. The competition is open to all members of the architectural glazing industry, including contract glaziers, glass and metal fabricators and suppliers, architects and building envelope/façade consultants, developers and owners. These awards will highlight design innovation, aesthetic achievements and technical difficulty of the project—all while incorporating glass and metal as dominant building materials. Categories include:

  • Low- to mid-rise construction (under 75 feet)
  • High-rise construction (more than 75 feet)
  • Commercial interiors (podium, lobby spaces, etc.)
  • Specialty construction.

To give you a refresh on 2019, the inaugural winners were:

High-Rise Construction: 181 Fremont, submitted by Vitro Architectural Glass

Low- to Mid-Rise Construction: Nike House of Innovation 000, submitted by Heintges Consulting Architects & Engineers

Specialty Construction: Amazon Spheres, submitted by Vitro Architectural Glass

Commercial Interiors: Texas Scottish Rite Hospital, submitted by Standard Bent Glass

We also have another impressive lineup of judges, all top-notch in their fields, who have generously volunteered their time:

  • Adrian Betanzos, Innovation Team, Tech Company, Cupertino, Calif.; Guest Lecturer, UC Berkeley Department of Architecture;
  • Richard Green, Principal/Owner, Green Facades LLC;
  • Mic Patterson, Ambassador of Innovation & Collaboration, Facade Tectonics Institute; and
  • Ben Tranel, Principal, Gensler.

I have had the privilege of working with all of these judges over the years on various projects and articles, and would like to extend a personal thank you to them for being a part of this year’s design awards. I’m also eager to see what comes in as far as submissions. I am sure all of the projects will all be impressive. If you have a project you’d like to enter, you can do so through our online entry form

Entries are due by September 23, 2020 and will be announced in the January 2021 issue of USGlass magazine.