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Submissions are open until Monday, December 9 for the 2020 OAA Awards, which showcase the best in architectural design and innovation by Ontario architects.
With the SHIFT Challenge taking place in odd-numbered years, the following award categories will be celebrated in 2020:
Architects have a role to play in the climate crisis and the lowering of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and reliance on clean power. The OAA’s Design Excellence Awards program—intended to showcase the best of the best—is looking for achievement in all aspects, including low carbon design. Operational carbon is an important metric for driving change, and the best Ontario architects are familiar with these metrics and are using then to make design decisions.
A key change for this year's Design Excellence Award submission requirements is the mandatory inclusion of Energy Usage Intensity (EUI) reporting, with exceptions for unconditioned buildings and alternate requirements for interior renovations. This change was approved by OAA Council last year after a recommendation put forth by the Sustainable Built Environments Committee (SBEC) and the Award Steering Committee. As the OAA is committed to the 2030 Challenge, it saw the need to strengthen sustainability within its award program. This integration began with the 2018 Design Excellence Awards, in which energy information was voluntary.
Other sustainable features will also be considered, so project teams are encouraged to describe them. Examples include embodied carbon metrics, water use metrics and achievement in sustainable awards programs. All information on sustainable features will be reviewed by a technical jury. There are no particular levels of achievement required; the submissions will be judged against each other. The technical jury’s report will then be made available to the design jury, which will consider sustainable information, and all other design achievement, to make the final decisions.