Competition for AIA North Carolina Headquarters

October, 10, 2007, by Jedidiah

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Why do cities get new, funky, and famous (or infamous) buildings?  Why has Raleigh still not received any of these since its influx of modernism, except hopefully CAM?  One of the main reasons is the lack of architectural competitions in the area.  Architectural competitions are rare in Raleigh especially.  I am not sure I remember the last open competition that was held in Raleigh.  Yesterday this all changed.

There seems to be a certain glamour that come with competitions in the architecture industry.  Of course SOME competitions end in heartbreak, but most do not.  AIA North Carolina may change this situation in the Capital City.  They recently released their State Design Awards and shortly after, have released plans for a competition to design their new headquarters in downtown Raleigh.  This is a chance to push forward a progressive design/idea for this building in a very tricky yet prime downtown site. 

Let’s hope it works, and considering the competition is headed by William McMinn, who also advised on the Mill Center for the Arts Competition in Hendersonville, NC, it should prove to be full of beautiful designs.

For more Information on the competition, visit AIA-NC’s website or read below.

A New Headquarters for AIA North Carolina

AIA North Carolina is purchasing property in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, and will initiate a design competition to select the architect for the new facility that clearly demonstrates the AIA Committee on the Environment (COTE) measures of sustainability. Committees appointed by the board have developed the physical program for the facility and the criteria for the design, along with stated goals and intentions of the competition.  The following outline of data is offered to inform the chapter membership of the scope of work, the schedule of dates, and the requirements of eligibility, registration, and submission for the competition.

Start Date:  09 Oct 2007
End Date:  15 Nov 2007
AIA North Carolina
115 West Morgan Street
Raleigh, NC 27601


The facility is to house the offices of AIANC and provide exhibit space, limited library for professional materials, conference rooms, multipurpose area as well as workrooms and storage.  Additional space will be provided as lease areas for other professional organizations.   

AIANC   8,100 gsf

LEASE   3,900 gsf

TOTAL 12,000 gsf  


The location of the proposed facility is in Raleigh, NC at the intersection of Peace and Wilmington Streets and is triangular in shape.  The context of the Site is both institutional and residential and acts between the two.


The AIA North Carolina Board has determined the construction budget will be set at approximately $2,500,000.


The competition will follow a one-stage format submitted on two 24” x 36” boards oriented horizontally.  An impartial jury of non-AIA North Carolina members will review all projects and select a first, second, and third place.  The AIA NC Board expects to award the commission for the project to the winning architect as selected by the jury, and in accordance with the requirements of the North Carolina QBS selection process.  Jury members will be announced following the close of registration.


Public Announcement of Competition: October 9, 2007

Closing Date for Registration and Program Mailing: November 15, 2007

Response to Questions: December 15, 2007

Due Date for Receiving all Submittals: January 18, 2008

Jury Review and Announcement of Competition Awards: January 28, 2008


Registrants should be able to meet EITHER the Firm Requirements and the Insurance Requirements OR the Architect Requirements and the Insurance Requirements.

Firm Requirements

  *  The firm must be licensed to practice Architecture in North Carolina as of October 9, 2007 and must maintain that license for the duration of the project.
  *  Firms must have an office(s) in North Carolina staffed by at least one AIA North Carolina member as of October 9, 2007.
  *  The competition entry must be designed and developed solely in North Carolina.

Architect Requirements

  *  Entrant must be an AIA North Carolina member, licensed to practice Architecture in North Carolina, and working full time in North Carolina as of October 9, 2007. AIANC membership and license must be maintained for the duration of the project.
  *  The competition entry must be designed and developed solely in North Carolina.

Insurance Requirements

  *  To be awarded the project all entrants must have the ability to obtain a one million dollar professional liability policy for the project.


A non-refundable registration fee of $200.00 is required for each submittal. For registration forms contact:


AIA North Carolina c/o Kathie Rainey (
115 West Morgan Street
Raleigh, North Carolina 27601
(919) 833-6656


Three monetary awards will be given for this Design Competition:

  *  First Place: $5,000
  *  Second Place: $3,000
  *  Third Place: $2,000

The First Place prize winner will receive the $5,000 as a designated portion of the project fee if / when they are awarded the project. If the First Place prize winner, for some reason, is not able to contract for the project, they will still receive their $5,000 Design Competition prize.


William G. McMinn, FAIA is the impartial professional advisor managing the competition.

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  • erin
    10/10 03:37 PM

    whats going to happen to their current offices?  i hope they dont tear it down, its pretty cool/iconic itself.

  • Jedidiah
    10/11 02:50 PM

    I’m looking into this Erin.  Word was they may sell it but not sure yet.  Will keep you updated what I find out.  I have the site package for the competition in my hand now. 

    The budget for this project doesn’t seem to support the size.  Could be interesting.

  • Justin
    10/11 03:44 PM

    Are they currently at the old water tower downtown?  Somewhere I heard that Greg Hatem bought that and was going to turn it into his residence.

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