Design Awards

2024 Design Awards Presentation: Aug. 15, 2024

Architecture Center Houston
902 Commerce Street
Houston, TX 77002

Category Presenter

Event Sponsors


2024 Submission Guidlines


Entry is not complete until you fill out the Registration Form AND upload your entry via Submittable

  1. Complete the 2024 Registration Form.
    This is where you submit payment for your entry fee registration.
    Fill in all the fields and submit payment for your entry. The name listed on Submittable and the Registration page should be the same person.
  2. Download and complete the Common App Questionnaire HERE
    This will be filled out and the EXCEL file uploaded to Submittable with your entry (the excel file will allow all of the text boxes to be read fully.
    To watch our recorded tutorial/webinar follow this link: DEMYSTIFYING THE COMMON APP: INFO SESSION + TUTORIAL WEBINAR
  3. Visit the Submittable Portal to upload your entry.

SUBMISSION DEADLINE for the Design Awards is Friday, JULY 26, 2024

Entry Fee, Forms, and Submittals are due by 5:00pm.

The AIA Houston Design Awards program recognizes design excellence in architecture, residential architecture, interior architecture, restoration/renovation, and urban design.

Criteria to be used by the jury include quality of design, resolution of the program idea, sustainable responsibility, innovation, thoughtfulness, and technique.

Projects located in the Houston metropolitan area designed by an architect registered in the US, or projects, regardless of location, designed by an architect registered in Texas practicing in the Houston metropolitan area. Built projects must have been completed after July 1, 2018 except for special requirements in the Urban Design category. On projects where construction is phased, only completed phases are eligible. Where one firm is not the sole author, all participants in the design work must be credited on the Entry Form. AIA Houston reserves the right to disqualify any entry not submitted in accordance with the rules.

If there are architectural elements that were pre-existing on the project and designed by another architect, that architect should be identified on the entry form. For instance, an addition to an existing building should identify the architect of the existing building where practicable and should clearly delineate for the jurors the addition from what existed before the project.

Common App Questionnaire
To help us better understand how your project’s design addresses sustainability and resilience, and in support of AIA National’s Framework for Design Excellence, we ask that you fill out the Common App Questionnaire. This is an opportunity for you to showcase performance data and relevant information in this context. We do not expect projects to address all aspects of the Framework for Design Excellence. Fields that are not relevant can be marked “N/A.”

The Common App is a document (in Excel) created by AIA to capture project performance metrics and simplify the awards submissions process across AIA components.


Built projects may be submitted for recognition in the following categories. The jury may move a project to a different category. LEED, AIA COTE guidelines, or other demonstrable environmental response should be included with each entry and will be considered in judging.

  • Architecture Greater Than 50,000 SF
  • Architecture Less Than 50,000 SF
  • Residential Architecture
  • Residential projects include single-family houses and multi-family projects up to 20 units. Large scale apartment or condominium projects must be submitted under Architecture.
  • Interior Architecture
  • Renovation/Restoration
  • Restoration, renovation, or rehabilitation to existing buildings including adaptive reuse. A non integrated addition to an existing building should be submitted under Architecture.
  • Divine Detail
  • Recognizes architectural ingenuity in the use of a particular material, detail, or building technology.


  • Urban Design
  • Urban Design projects must have an active client. Submittals may include urban design projects, planning programs, civic improvements, environmental programs, and redevelopment projects. Portions of the project must be under implementation; however, the whole project need not to be completed. Project Description must include implementation schedule.
  • On The Boards
  • This category is for unrealized or uncompleted work for an active client
  • Conceptual
  • This category is for conceptual work not for an active client.
  • NOTE: Student submissions are welcome, but must have a faculty sponsor.


For every entry, please prepare the following:

ONE Project Presentation PDF and the Sustainability Page (which is the Common App Excel file)

  • The PROJECT PDF file should be no more than 20 pages
  • The file size should be no larger than 20 MB
  • 4:3 aspect ratio is recommended for PowerPoint
  • Recommended PDF page size is 8.5” x 11”
  • Submittals may not contain transitions, sound, animation, video clips, panorama movies, hyperlinks, or links to other files.
  • Images must be a minimum of 150 DPI
  • Do not identify architects or designers in the file name or on any image.
  • Preexisting architectural elements not designed as part of the project, but visible in the images, should be clearly marked as preexisting and the prior architect should be credited.
  • For all projects (except Interior Architecture) include a site plan or aerial photography.
  • All plans and elevations should be clearly marked with a north arrow or directional identification.
  • For Renovation/Restoration projects, indicate pre-existing conditions with plans and/or photographs.
  • For Interior Architecture projects, include floor plans and one exterior photograph of the building for reference

ONE Project Image

A 7" x 5", 250 DPI image. The image will be used for the Design Awards Publication, in which all submittals will be published.

One Project Description
No more than 300 words. The description should include program requirements, sustainability goals, and design solutions.

The SUSTAINABILITY PAGE is the Common App questionnaire itself.

One Common App Questionnaire Download HERE

  • This  EXCEL FILE (the excel file will allow all of the text boxes to be read fully) may be more than 1 page due to the length of the form
  • This will be filled out and uploaded to Submittable with your entry.