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Press Release

Perkins Eastman's Dunbar High School and Southwest Waterfront Receive Awards, Distinction From Congress for the New Urbanism

>PRWEB.COM Newswire
>PRWEB.COM NewswireWashington, DC (PRWEB) June 06, 2014

The Washington, DC office of top design and architecture firm Perkins Eastman is pleased to announce that two distinctive area projects--Dunbar Senior High School and The Wharf: Southwest Waterfront--are recipients of 2014 Charter Awards in two out of thirteen categories from the Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU). Dunbar High School, which opened to students in August 2013 and is slated to achieve LEED Platinum certification, won in the category of Best Building, Civic; Southwest Waterfront, which broke ground in March 2014, won in the category of Best Neighborhood Plan.

The Charter Awards recognize excellence in urban design, from regional and neighborhood plans to urban buildings. This year's winners were selected in January by a jury of distinguished designers, architects, planners and scholars, all led by Jury Chair Jeff Speck AICP, who presented the awards Thursday evening, June 5, at the CNU 22 Awards Ceremony in Buffalo, New York. Perkins Eastman Principal Matthew Bell FAIA and Associate Principal Hilary Bertsch AIA were in attendance.

"The new [Paul Laurence] Dunbar High School is remarkable in so many ways," says Speck. "It reintroduces a street that was megablocked out of existence by the building it replaced…and it opens up all of its non-classroom spaces for use by the community at large, creating a new heart for its neighborhood." The new 280,000 gsf school was designed to pay homage to historic elements of the original building (Dunbar was founded in 1870 as the nation's first African-American public school) while establishing a new benchmark for sustainable, high-performance school design, which includes a geothermal system, 482 kW photovoltaic array, two 20,000-gallon cisterns, low VOC materials, and underground parking. Principals Matthew Bell FAIA and Sean O'Donnell AIA, LEED AP led the Dunbar design team.

Washington, DC's mixed-use Southwest Waterfront development, aka The Wharf, is designed on the premise of reconnecting the city with its waterfront and creating a place that residents can be proud to call their own. Stretched across 27 land acres and 24 water acres, with 1.9 million gsf of building area comprising the first of three phases alone, this neighborhood revival has long been a glimmer in DC residents' eyes and now construction is underway, with a projected completion date of 2017 for Phase 1. The entire development is targeted for LEED-ND Gold, with all new buildings planned to achieve a minimum of LEED Silver. Perkins Eastman is serving as Master Planner, Design Architect and Architect of Record for the public realm, infrastructure and buildings in two of the initial parcels. Principal Stan Eckstut FAIA and Associate Principal Hilary Bertsch AIA are leading the design team.

About the CNU Charter Awards
Since 2001, the Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) has administered the CNU Charter Awards program. Regarded as the preeminent global award for excellence in urban design, the CNU Charter Awards honors a select number of winners and honorable mentions - including one grand professional prize, and one grand academic prize for students – across multiple categories from a competitive field of entries. CNU convenes a jury of distinguished designers, architects, planners and scholars who review the entries and select the winners. Winning projects are recognized for their excellence in fulfilling and advancing the principles of the Charter of the New Urbanism, which defines the essential qualities of walkable, sustainable places from the scale of the region down to the block and building. Recognizing outstanding architectural, landscape and urban designs built in harmony with their physical and social contexts, the Charter Awards have honored projects from Andorra to South Africa, Beijing to San Antonio. For more info visit

About Perkins Eastman
Perkins Eastman is among the top design and architecture firms in the world. With more than 750 employees in 13 locations around the globe, Perkins Eastman practices at every scale of the built environment. From niche buildings to complex projects that enrich whole communities, the firm's portfolio reflects a dedication to progressive and inventive design that enhances the quality of the human experience. The firm's portfolio includes high-end residential, commercial, hotels, retail, office buildings, and corporate interiors, to schools, hospitals, museums, senior living, and public sector facilities. Perkins Eastman provides award-winning design through its offices in North America (New York, NY; Boston, MA; Charlotte, NC; Chicago, IL; Pittsburgh, PA; San Francisco, CA; Stamford, CT; Toronto, Canada; and Washington, DC); South America (Guayaquil, Ecuador); North Africa and Middle East (Dubai, UAE); and Asia (Mumbai, India, and Shanghai, China).

Photos and renderings available.

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