Volume 13, No. 4 - May 13, 2019
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BLAST - News and Notes from AIA Northern Virginia

Marymount University at Ballston Center, by Gensler (more info)
In This Issue

Design Awards Celebration June 13

Architecture Week in Review

Fellowship Nomination

Awards + Opportunities

Featured Project: Marymount
    University at Ballston Center


Visit the AIA Northern Virginia Website

 This issue of BLAST is sponsored by Pella Mid-Atlantic and Potomac Valley Brick

Design Awards Celebration on June 13

We are pleased to announce that our 2019 Design Awards Celebration will be held at Marymount University at Ballston Center, designed by Gensler, and a 2018 Design Award winning project. Please join us in applauding great architecture and enjoying the Chapter's biggest event of the year. Tickets are available at www.aianova.org/DA19.

The awards planning committee also invites area firms to consider supporting this important celebration through a sponsorship of $500 or $1,000. Sponsorship is a great way to demonstrate your firm's commitment to the Chapter's programming and supports the recognition of design excellence by our members. For details on sponsorships, visit

Architecture Week in Review

 Thank you to everyone who organized an event, helped with a building tour, volunteered at a family event, set up, cleaned up, and did so much to offer 22 public events in ten days! Look for details and pictures in the upcoming issue of AIA Northern Virginia News.

 Sketch Competition

Thank you to all the artists who submitted sketches to our competition, 61 sketches in all! Congratulations to Matt Miller, recognized with the Award of Honor, and to Bill Brown, AIA, Yoshikado Koyama, AIA, and Charles Todd, AIA, selected as Jurors' Favorites.

Our four winners will be sent Frank Harmon's book, Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See. Coincidentally, Frank Harmon is speaking at the Athenaeum in Alexandria on May 17 and then holding an Urban Sketching Workshop on May 18. If you are interested, details are available here.

Thank you to Matt Harwood and Jinchen Han, artists at Torpedo Factory Art Center, who served as our jurors. The winning sketches are displayed on our website at www.aianova.org.

Fellowship Nomination Process

The chapter is offering two fellowship sessions in May. The first, Road to Fellowship, offers an introduction to fellowship requirements and the submission process, including a discussion on strategies for documenting your experience over the course of your career. This session is recommended for members who are considering submitting for the Class of 2021 or at some time in the future. Learn more.

The second session, Focus on Fellowship, will concentrate on preparation of the nomination package over the next 5 months. This session is for candidates who have previously submitted for fellowship, have attended an AIA information session on fellowship within the past 2 years, and/or have been actively working on a nomination package with a sponsor. This session will also be of interest to Fellows and others AIA members who are or are considering serving as sponsors. Learn more.

Women's Leadership Summit - Reframe. Rethink. Refresh.

 Registration is now open for the AIA's 2019 Women's Leadership Summit, which takes place in Minneapolis, September 12-14.

The WLS offers high-value educational sessions, candid conversations, and wellness activities designed to help you refine your leadership skills and accelerate your career growth. Tickets are limited and registration is open to AIA members first. In order to receive the member discount, you must use the discount code on the final check out screen. If you are an AIA member and did not receive the discount code, contact (800) 242-3837. Details are available here.

Quick Notes...  

Region of the Virginias Breakfast...   at A'19 is June 7 [info]...   Equity in Architecture Survey 2018...   results and key findings available on the Equity by Design website [info]...   Safety-Assessment Program (SAP) Training...   is being hosted by AIA Maryland on June 1 [info]...   Our ARE Prep Series...   wraps up for 2019 with Construction and Evaluation on June 22 [info]...

Awards and Opportunities

Due May 15ArchEx 2019 Call for Proposals
Due May 31ARCHITEXX Call for Student Films about Women
Due June 16AIA Virginia's Awards for Excellence in Architecture
Due June 24AIA Architecture Award Submissions
Due June 30Religious Art & Architecture Design Awards
Opportunities to Serve on AIA Panels(Architecture Billings Index, Global Architecture Billings Index, Home Design Trends)

Design News
Job Board

As a benefit to our members, we maintain a Job Board of local postings. Pay us a visit for postings from: Bowie Gridley Architects; West Workshop; HLR Architects; Stroik Lighting Design; MTFA Architecture; Adaptive Property Solutions; and Karl Riedel Architecture, PC.

Featured Project

Marymount University Ballston Center
Arlington, Virginia

 Marymount's new home for their business school and graduate programs is an “Academic Office Building” that also offers leasable space to the private sector. The integrated building design enables the University and business entities to have an ongoing dialogue, thereby enhancing the quality and value of Marymount's programs: learning in a business environment.

By moving the parking underground and increasing the development density with a strategic mix of uses, the Marymount Ballston Center creates a unique Live/Work/Play/Learn community. Since building orientation became a key challenge, the team studied options with 3-D printed massing models and chose to locate a public plaza at the corner of the site. The Academic Office Building and Residential Building effectively cradle the plaza, offering each structure the opportunity to place its front door facing the site’s highly coveted corner. Where the two buildings come closest to touching, the public space narrows before giving way to a communal courtyard – another common feature on college campuses – between the buildings.

 This urban campus includes classrooms, seminar rooms, faculty offices, and meeting rooms for faculty and students. Specialized spaces include a reconfigurable conference facility, teleconference suites, cyber-security labs, and a mock trading floor. These spaces meet all the programmatic needs of the university, but also offer a rich variety of spaces for passive and active learning such as the exterior courtyard and the public art gallery on the second floor. The University occupies six floors with a ground floor of retail and three top floors for office tenants.

The exterior design of the Academic Office Building features a layered facade of glass, metal, and terracotta tile in modular panels that shift subtly between floors - inviting a second look as it reveals its program and promotes curiosity. To add interest and activity to the facade, a communicating stair was located on the east facade, overlooking and visible from the public plaza. Each floor landing has a small student lounge area outfitted with charging stations and white boards. The structural slabs, pipes, and ductwork above the lounges and corridors are painted with a different accent color on each floor to aid with wayfinding and create a vibrant spectrum of color during the evening.

The 200-seat auditorium adds a grand instructional space that the University has never had before. It's also an important new venue in Ballston that acts as an anchor for the larger community. The Chapel, Library, and Art Gallery will all offer unique experiences that help define this learning community and give the building its progressive Catholic identity. For Marymount, the idea was not simply to embed itself in the community, but to invite the community to experience the building, enjoy its public spaces, and serve the University's motto of "common ground."

This building is a 2018 Design Award winning project and the site of our 2019 Design Awards Celebration on June 13.

Photography © Connie Zhou



 13 | AIA Northern Virginia Board Meeting
     4:30p, Alexandria. [info]

16 | Road to Fellowship
     6:30p, Alexandria. [info]

16 | AIA Virginia Open House
     5:00p, Richmond. [info]

17 | Design Awards Committee Meeting
     12:00p, Alexandria. [info]

22 | Focus on Fellowship
     12:30p, Alexandria. [info]

27 | Women in Architecture Book Chat
     6:30p, Alexandria. [info]

31 | Design Awards Committee Meeting
     12:00p, Alexandria. [info]

Upcoming Dates to Note:
  June 6-8 - A'19: AIA Conference on Architecture
  June 13 - Design Awards Celebration
  June 21 - Permeable Pavements & Geotechnical Engineering Report Interpretation

AIA Northern Virginia Calendar  |  AIA|DC Calendar  |  AIA Potomac Valley Calendar  |  AIA Virginia Calendar  |  Branch Museum Calendar

For additional information on any of these events, please contact the Chapter House at (703) 549-9747 or aianova@aianova.org. The Chapter House is located at 1101 Duke Street, Alexandria 22314.