Eligibility and Submission Requirements




Submission Requirements



All entries shall be projects executed and designed by AIA Charleston members or project teams consisting of at least one AIA Charleston member in good standing. Projects may have been executed anywhere in the tri-county area and must have been substantially completed after January 1, 2014. The number of entries submitted by a firm or individual is not limited. Projects that have previously won an AIA Charleston award are not eligible. All projects, regardless of size, budget, style, building type, or location are eligible. Entries are welcomed and encouraged from both established and new practitioners at any size firm.

Unpaid Labor Declaration Policy If you cannot answer 'Yes' to the Unpaid Labor Declaration Policy below, you are not eligible to submit for the design awards.

The firm does not utilize, employ, or otherwise engage labor that is unpaid, including working students, and neither does any firm of which the candidate is an owner or manager, in part or in whole. The firm acknowledges this wording shall cover all persons working under their employ, regardless of position or title. Exceptions recognized by Federal law (such as legally defined internships or educational cooperative programs) are exempt from this Policy. The firm further acknowledges that they have not utilized any unpaid labor as defined above for any work submitted for this awards program. The submitter personally acknowledges adherence to the terms of this Policy.


Registration opens: July 1st, 2019
Registration Closes: August 7th, 2019 @ 5:00pm
Submission upload Deadline: August 15th, 2019 @ 5:00pm
Design Awards Celebration: 7:00pm November 8, 2019 at Woolfe Street Auditorium

Submission Requirements

For Built and Unbuilt Project Awards compile each entry with the following:

  • Short Description / Architect's Statement. The short description is no more than 100 words to briefly explain the design intent and scope of your project. The Architect’s Statement is no more than 500 words to provide a more detailed explanation of the design problem and your solution. Include any special features of your project or issues that were addressed during the design process. Applicants must use the fillable form, downloadable below. This file will be labeled with the project category prefix, your unique registration number, and the letter D (for example, "C_567436_D.pdf")

  • A maximum of twelve (12) images submitted in a single PDF file not to exceed 15 MB, and labeled with the project category prefix and your unique registration number (for example, "C_567436.pdf"). It is your responsibility to make sure the architect's name and/or firm name is not revealed on any of the file names, images, plans, or narratives - failure to follow this requirement will automatically disqualify the entry.

  • One (1) JPG image for your “Public Display Image” that is 10 MB max that will be used when publicizing Design Awards winners and entrants. This image will be labeled with the project category prefix, your unique registration number, and the letters PD(for example, "C_567436_PD.jpg") . This is the ONLY image that may show your firm name and/or logo.

  • Photo Release Form. Required for all categories except Unbuilt Awards. Each photographer per submission should have their own release. (You can download this form during the submission process.) This file will be labeled with the project category prefix, your unique registration number, and the letter R (for example, "C_567436_R.pdf")

  • Client Release Form. Required for the Unbuilt project category only. Each project should have its own release. (You can download this form during the submission process.) This file will be labeled with the project category prefix, your unique registration number, and the letter R (for example, "C_567436_R.pdf")

  • Concealed Information Form. Required for all categories. Complete each relevant field including all consultants. This file will be labeled with the project category prefix, your unique registration number, and the letter Z (for example, "C_567436_Z.pdf")

For the Service Awards compile each entry with the following:

  • Nominator name. Include you full name, firm name, AIA number, contact email, and phone.

  • Nominee name. Include the name of the individual or organization or both, an appropriate contact email and phone for the nominee.

  • Nomination Letter. 250 words maximum nomination letter outlining reason for nomination

  • Supporting Information (optional). Compile in one single PDF Images, web links, or other information to support the nomination.

Note: Project Category Prefixes are C-Commercial, R-Residential, P-Preservation & Adaptive Reuse, I-Interior Architecture, U-Unbuilt Project, and S-Service Award


Awards & Publicity

Each entry will be judged for the success of the solution to the problems presented by the project and its worthiness, as determined by the jury, for an award of excellence in architecture. Awards will be classified into five categories for publicity and organization purposes. Jury retains the right to reclassify projects. Additional citations or project recognition may be awarded at the discretion of the jury. The written project description should provide basic information about the project and verbally convey the design concept to the jury. Information requested in the awards subcategory descriptions should be addressed clearly. Projects descriptions should not provide information, which discloses or identifies project team members.

Awards will be announced at the AIA Charleston Design Awards on November 8, 2019. It is important that all applicants plan to attend the ceremony or have a representative present. Certificates for all award winning projects will be presented at the awards ceremony. Winners of Design Awards will receive three certificates: one for the architect, one for the owner, and one for the contractor. Additional certificates will be available at the expense of the award recipient.

AIA Charleston intends to publish all design award entries. Therefore, it is essential that drawings and photographs not be restricted against publication. It is the entrant’s responsibility to clear all drawings and photographs for release. A form will be provided to you to secure the necessary permission. With your online submission, please include a separate JPG file containing one Public Display Image titled with your entry number. This can be a photograph or a collection of images that best represents the project and will be used publicly - online, electronically and/or in print media.

Additional Information

Projects submissions should include a combination of photographic images, renderings, and drawings sufficient to present the project to the jury. Photos may be in color or black & white. At least one interior image is requested with all submissions, unless interiors were not in the scope of the project. Technical drawings such as plans, sections, and elevations may be presented at any scale, but should include a graphic scale and north arrow for reference. While not required, every submission is strongly encouraged to depict the relationship of the project to its site context and any significant synergy generated by the design solution.

All information will be used as entered on the website and for publication. Please be thorough and consistent in completing your field entries and double-check for spelling errors.

No logos or any other information that identifies the architect/firm is to appear anywhere on the project submission form (Short Description, Architect's Statement, project images, etc.). This info should be entered in the Public Display Image and Concealed Information Form Only!

Please be sure to confirm the exact wording of firm, owner and/or consultant names and titles.

Use "N/A" or other appropriate text in required fields on the submission form if there is no info or it's not pertinent to your project.

Please note: images submitted should accurately reflect built conditions. Images that have been digitally or otherwise altered to obscure or misrepresent built project conditions will be disqualified.

Questions & Answers

Q: I am a member of Charleston AIA and would like to submit an entry to the Design Awards. I am not yet licensed as an architect, am I still eligible to submit a project?
A: Unfortunately, the intent of the Design Awards is to recognize AIA member's work. This means that the Architect of the project must be a full Member of the Institute.