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Auburn University

January 16, 2013

Marlon Blackwell Architect has received a 2013 AIA Institute Honor Award for Architecture for Saint Nicholas Eastern Orthodox Church in Springdale, Arkansas. In an “aggressive adaptive reuse,” an existing metal shop building was transformed into a sanctuary and fellowship hall. Marlon Blackwell, FAIA, a 1980 graduate of the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture, is founder and principal of Marlon Blackwell Architect and is a Distinguished Professor and Department Head in the School of Architecture at the University of Arkansas.

Third Year architecture students completed the annual “Concrete Comp” at the end of Fall Semester 2012. This competition is sponsored by the Alabama Concrete Industries Association, which provides funding for cash awards to the winning students. Winners included:  First Place, Michael Brudi “HandMade in Alabama”; Second Place, Alex Hays, “C2S”; Third Place, Alexandra Buehning, “Structural Glass CMU.”

4th year architecture celebrated the end of Fall 2012 with the 51st Annual Alagasco Student Design competition. This year's challenge:  design a new 225,000 SF hospital in Boston on Parcel 11B, located on the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway, a vibrant public corridor created by the monumental public works project of the "Big Dig." This prominent location suggests a Children's Hospital is a civic institution and a complex technical and cultural challenge.

Juried by a distinguished and varied panel of professionals including healthcare experts, faculty and architectural professionals, the projects were recognized for their complexity and range, as well as the thoroughness of the design solutions. First place was awarded to Whitney Johnson, second place to Cody Bryant and third place to Samuel Maddox. Honorable mentions were also awarded to Jeffrey Bak, Sean Flaharty, Samantha O’Leary, Austin Powers and Ruben Quesada Alvarado. These students attended the AIA Montgomery Design Awards Gala on December 4 where their final presentations were on display. Awards were made possible by generous support from Alagasco.

The Spring 2013 Lecture Series of the Auburn University School of Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Planning is entitled “Love & Hate: Points of View, Perspectives & Personalities” and is a continuation of the series of the same title from the Fall of 2012. The lectures this year focus on depth as opposed to breadth in the design practice. Lecturers will discuss specific project(s) of the designer's choice rather than a survey of their respective portfolios with an emphasis on the design process beyond the finished product—often a means to an end. Lecturers will elaborate on the trials and tribulations of specific building endeavors in their recent past—the surprises, the small and large successes and the details of a project cycle.

APLA is particularly pleased to add a variety of speakers this spring including, architects, planners and historians. Scheduled speakers/presentations include:  Chris Leong , a founding partner of Leong Leong; a screening of the film Conversations with Architects, a film produced by Merrill Elam of Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects, Atlanta, Helen Han, architect and filmmaker, and Margaret Fletcher, Assistant Professor of Architecture at Auburn University; Julie Snow, FAIA of Julie Snow Architects; Marla Nelson, Ph.D., Associate Professor in the Department of Planning and Urban Studies at the University of New Orleans; Nasser Rabbat, the Aga Khan Professor and the Director of the Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture at MIT.

Jack Williams, Professor Emeritus Auburn University, was invited to lecture at Beijing Forestry University in October as part of the University’s celebration of its 60th anniversary. Professor Williams and Beijing Forestry University’s faculty celebrated twenty years of friendship between the two universities Beijing Forestry University’s School of Landscape Architecture is China’s oldest and largest landscape architecture program and offers both undergraduate and graduate degrees in planning, urban design and landscape architecture.

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