AIA NC’s Center for Architecture and Design Grand Opening
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AIA NC’s Center for Architecture and Design Grand Opening

March, 13, 2012, by Rusty

Advertise on NR

Dubbing it the "Green and Grand Opening" of the newly completed Center for Architecture and Design (CfAD), the North Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects will be opening the new facility to the public this Saturday, March 17th, from 1 to 8 p.m. This free tour will showcase the sustainable aspects of the building.

Some of the features to be discussed on Saturday include: the building's porous parking lot, which collects storm water runoff (rather than pouring it into the Raleigh's stormwater system) locally sourced materials including stone quarried in North Carolina and cypress wood siding, and passive solar strategies implemented to reduce summer time heat gain.

Designed by Frank Harmon Architect, the mission of the new AIA NC CfAD is to inform, educate, and promote the value of architecture, design, and quality environments to the public. Harmon was selected as the architect for the project through a competition held in 2007, and the building is one of the first major buildings in Raleigh to have emerged successfully from the Great Recession. After a lengthy capital fundraising campaign, construction began in late 2010, and the building is expected to receive a LEED Platinum Rating from the US Green Building Council.

What this building means for the future of architecture in Raleigh and North Carolina at large remains to be seen, but with many new conference spaces and the direct connection with our state government, it's certainly worth taking some time out on Saturday to see what it's all about.

The NC Center for Architecture and Design is located at 14 E. Peace Street, in downtown Raleigh.

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Downtown RaleighNorth CarolinaDesignFrank Harmon ArchitectAIANC


  • Tyler Durden
    03/14 11:27 AM - This seems to be both unfounded and out of line.

  • frank
    03/14 11:39 AM

    I thought this was an amazing design until I realized it wasn’t the press box for a high school football stadium.

  • john b
    03/14 11:55 AM

    Your right! It does look like a football press box. Undoubtedly the biggest mistake ever built! The previous office was the original water tower in downtown- a historic and interesting space. This design is neither.

  • Artie
    03/14 11:58 AM

    The south facing side is lovely.  The opposite side, decidedly less so.

  • john b
    03/14 12:02 PM

    This is a good opportunity to pile on. Raleigh has a lot of the worst architecture ever. The Marriott is horrendous, the convention center is an airport terminal, the Environ and Nat Res building is an enormous shoebox,and the fountains on Fay street have the councilmen’s names on it-how tacky!    Good designs- the shimmer wall- the Forum, Blount st homes, and old Capitol Building.

  • Raleigh Native
    03/14 03:52 PM

    How many rooms is in that double-wide?  I always wanted to live downtown for a cheap price!

  • G
    03/16 09:47 AM

    This building is architectural self-fulfillment plain and simple. It serves no purpose other than to say “Architects built this and we don’t care what it looks like or its relation to its space.” Unfortunately, it has made Peace Street the used, wadded tissue next to the bed.

    Love the dented shingles on the facade facing the more utilized artery best!!

  • Squirrelbaby
    03/19 04:12 PM

    I think the architect accidently put the shipping container portion on the wrong side. What a mess of a building.

    On Twitter @Squirrelchat

  • Stringtheory
    03/19 09:16 PM

    With an obvious salute to the functions of the environment, the spaces of the surroundings, and the medium of the materials: I applaud the concept and the design.
    I bet the interior views are amazing.

  • TSnow27604
    03/21 08:19 AM

    Wow, negative posts by faceless people on New Raleigh.  Who would have thought?!  Since you are tossing bombs anonymously from your computers, I’ll just have to imagine what you all look like.  I picture women in floor length dresses with whalebone corsets and men with top hats and handlebar mustaches.  Your taste in architecture stopped in the 19th century so I’m guessing everything else did too.  Enjoying that Strauss waltz on the ol’ phonograph while you type on this new fangled magic box?

  • Sippan Hatterade
    03/21 02:21 PM

    sheet metal ? thanks but, you shouldnt have

    at least its wearing a target for the next tornado

    I’m guessing the interior is all unfinished plywood too ?


  • Richard Springs
    03/22 08:05 AM

    We toured and loved the building.  We applaud the forward thinking green design.  Love the contemporary look.  Sadly most folks do not which why is garbage look alike tract homes are still be overbuilt.

  • Marky Mark
    03/24 06:09 PM

    It looks like a bunch of architects got together to make the most “architectury” building they could. An incomprehensible mess meant only to impress other architects.

  • Charlie Hustle
    03/24 10:14 PM

    The main problem for me is the crimped, brown metal on the Peace St. side. Surely the architect knew this material would look bad vertical like that. It does look bad on that side. Poor choice.
    The rest of it and the landscaping looks nice enough though.

  • Cardello
    03/26 09:36 AM

    The Peace St. side of this building looks bent. I know this was an intentional design element, and I’m sure there’s some sort of logic behind it; but wow, it throws the compositional balance of the whole thing off. I assume it was meant to mirror the change in sidewalk grade. Does anyone have any info on why they did this? Otherwise, It’s a really cool looking place.

  • GordonTrenchard
    04/02 05:23 PM

    Yes, and do not forget largely financed with stimulus dollars!  A great interior feature is when you are inside the building you can hear toilets flushing because of the exposed structure, this is a great detail!  Also, the north facade is an urban design epic fail and ignores most of the rules of sound urban design.  Otherwise this is a magnificent structure.

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