COTE Committee Meeting

Please join us for COTEdc’s July committee meeting, hosted by Torti Gallas + Partners! Scott Welch from Torti Gallas will speak with us as our July “Friend of the Committee”, giving a brief talk on his experience with Passive House projects around the region.   We will also discuss planning of upcoming COTEdc events for August and the Fall.

reIMAGINE: A tour of the Martin Luther King Jr. Library

Please join us for a tour of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in conjunction with our exhibition, reIMAGINE: Creating New Uses for Old Buildings.

In 2020, the MLK library reopened its doors after undergoing a $211 million rehabilitation. The completely modernized library now includes elements such as a spectacular new, vibrant and transparent entryway, sculptured monumental staircase, a roof top terrace, and much more. Join us as a tour guide details the landmark renovation, including all of the library's new features, and all the work that went into transforming this space.

Before the tour begins, please feel free to meet up with DAC staff and other tour members for lunch in the library's beautiful new cafe.

LA.IDEA Committee Meeting

COTEdc Summer Project Tour: Adelaide Alley House with BLDUS

Please join the AIA|DC COTE group for a tour of architecture firm BLDUS' founding partner Andrew Linn’s home in Adelaide Alley on Capitol Hill. Incorporating highly sustainable materials such as sheep’s wool insulation, bamboo framing, cork and bark cladding, milk paint, and various reclaimed materials, the alley house was designed and built around health, privacy and sustainability. Andrew will describe BLDUS's process for developing alley houses and share some insights about making this a home for his family. Be sure to RSVP as limited spots are available to maintain a small group size. Light food and refreshments will be served on what we hope will be a wonderful summer evening for the COTEdc group!

Learning objectives:

  • Design and privacy strategies for alley homes.
  • The benefits of sheep’s wool insulation and considerations for use within your future projects
  • With the BAMCORE rep joining the tour, understand the benefits of utilizing the BAMCORE framing system.
  • Sourcing, design, and construction considerations while with working with reclaimed materials.

Organized by:

Committee on the Environment and BLDUS

CANstruction 2024 Team Registration

  • Date

    Friday, June 14 2024-Sunday, July 14 2024

  • Time

    Multi-day event.

CANstruction 2024 will take place at the National Building Museum Sunday, November 24. 

CANstruction 2024 Timeline:
*some dates are subject to change*

  • Registration- June 14-July 14
  • Kickoff Meeting- June 14
  • Submit your Concept- August 12th 
  • Food Order Due- September 4th
  • Turn in your Poster Information- October 4th
  • Team Visit Food Orders at CAFB- October 23rd–November 16th
  • Food Order Payment Due- October 31st
  • BUILD! Sunday, November 24th from 12:00pm to 6:00pm.
  • Jury Deliberations- November 25th
  • Collect your Award and DeCanstruction- December 2nd at noon

ABOUT Canstruction

CANstruction is a nationwide program that aims to raise awareness about hunger. In DC, CANstruction is organized by the Washington Architectural Foundation as a creative design-build competition that benefits the Capital Area Food Bank through donations of canned goods. Teams from architecture and design firms from Washington, DC use their skills to build sculptures out of cans of food which are displayed for a week in the Great Hall of the National Building Museum. The nutritious shelf-stable food is donated to the CAFB for distribution to those in need after the event.

This program is generously sponsored by BluEdge, Capital Area Food Bank, DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities, Giant, National Building Museum, TW Perry, and Washington Architectural Foundation.

CRAN: Designing a House with Resale in Mind (Hosted by AIA Potomac Valley)

  • Date

    Saturday, June 22 2024

  • Time

    3:00pm - 5:00pm

  • Location

    Private Residence

Join AIA/PV and Capital Area CRAN on a tour of the Great Falls custom home of Francisca and Antonio Alonso, partners in the design-build firm, AV Architects + Builders, as well as in marriage. They have been designing and building modern homes in the DMV for more than 20 years and have extensive experience in all aspects of the process to share with architects. One of their most recent projects was a home for their own family, which includes four young adult children. They designed it with the intention of living in this home until it's time for a new property and an exciting new architectural project.

Together with Theo Adamstein, formerly of Adamstein & Demetriou Architects, now Sales Associate and Vice President at TTR Sotheby's International Realty, they will present an engaging and informative program on how to design a custom house with resale in mind.

The tour will take place from 3:30 to 4:30 PM. Enjoy happy hour drinks and bites while you visit and tour the stunning home.


Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how decision-making for a custom home is affected, throughout the design and construction process, when viewed through the lens of future resale.
  • Understand how to prioritize decisions, when viewed through this lens, based on creating value without compromising quality and design.
  • Focus on how to guide clients in making good design, color and materials, finishes and fixture decisions, whether they intend to live in the home or are building to sell.
  • Tour the home and site to view examples of a multitude of considerations encountered by this design-builder couple in creating their current home and future “house-for-sale.”


Presented by:

Photo of Antonio & Francisca Alonso
Antonio Alonso
Francisca Alonso
Partners, AV Architects + Builders
Meet Francisca Alonso, CEO
Meet Antonio Alonso, VP


Photo of Theo Adamstein

Theo Adamstein
Sales Associate and Vice President 
TTR Sotheby's International Realty
Theo Adamstein Bio
Theo Adamstein Real Estate Brochure

Permit Streamlining Townhall

  • Date

    Friday, July 19 2024

  • Time

    12:00pm - 1:30pm

  • Location


Join us to discuss the state of DC's permit Streamlining plans. DOB Director Brian Hanlon, AIA wants to hear from you to understand the problems our membership is currently experiencing. In 2018-2019 we did a lot of work with DCRA on streamlining. Time to saddle up again and to help make the system more efficient and user friendly.

Learning Objectives:

  • Identify current problems in the permitting process
  • Illustrate the importance of codes
  • Identify new ideas that can help streamline the system
  • Understand why professional involvement is so valuable to this process

Mexican Cultural Institute Tour

Join LA.IDEA|DC for a guided tour of the Mexican Cultural Institute on Thursday, June 27th, from 5:00-6:00pm.

The Mexican Cultural Institute was designated as a Historic Site in DC in 2012 and listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 2013. Such commendation speaks to the century-long heritage of the 16th street mansion, whose murals and decorations are on display to the public. Listing in the D.C. Inventory of Historic Sites provides recognition of properties significant to the historic and aesthetic heritage of the nation’s capital. The mansion was chosen not only as a premier example of the Beaux Arts architectural tradition with historic interior artwork, but also for its association with the rise of Meridian Hill as the home to foreign embassies, and its exemplary illustration of the City Beautiful Movement, which sought to promote beautiful architecture beyond Washington’s monumental core.

The Mexican Cultural Institute is committed to enriching the relationship between Mexico and the United States by sharing Mexico’s vibrant cultural past and present with the local community. Since its establishment in 1990, the Institute has succeeded in presenting diverse, ongoing cultural programs and has become a thriving artistic center in the heart of Washington. Over the past three decades, the Institute has developed cultural programming in partnership with many institutions in the nation’s capital including the Smithsonian Institution, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the National Gallery of Art, the Library of Congress, among others.

Presented by:
Victor Salinas, Public Relations at the Mexican Cultural Institute of the Embassy of Mexico in the USA.
Organized by:
AIA|DC LA.IDEA Committee

Arts & Architecture 2025: Open Call for Artwork

  • Date

    Sunday, September 15 2024

  • Time


Have your work featured in an exhibition at DAC!

The District Architecture Center is seeking architecture-themed and design-themed artwork by artists, architects, and designers (including students) for inclusion in our ARTS + ARCHITECTURE 2025 exhibit. Each work of art accepted into the exhibition will earn artists the chance to be exhibited at DAC, and to have a public forum through which to sell their art (if chosen to do so).

The ARTS + ARCHITECTURE 2025 exhibition will be on display at the District Architecture Center from January 2025 to April 2025. If the artist so chooses, artwork can be marked for sale by DAC and proceeds will go 100% to the artist themselves.

DAC will promote artists included in the exhibition through media outreach, our website, and targeted email and social media campaigns to all of our followers. We are open to a wide interpretation of what architecture-themed and design-themed artwork is, so if you think your work fits those descriptions in any way, we encourage you to submit 1-6 works for consideration (there is no entry fee)! 

We are open to submissions in all mediums, but works must fit one of the following categories:

2D Artwork: ​​Prints, Paintings, Drawings, Collages, etc.
3D Artwork: ​​Sculptures, Light Fixtures, Ceramics, Architecture Models, etc.
Digital Artwork: ​​Videos, Sound Installations, Music Albums, etc.


Entry Form Due (w/pdf, mpg, or mp3 image of each work): September 15, 2024
Notification of Acceptance/Rejection of Entries: October 4, 2024
Delivery of Artwork to District Architecture Center: By January 9, 2025
Hanging of show: Week of January 13, 2025
Exhibition: January 29 - April 17, 2025
Opening Reception: January 29, 2025
Pickup art at District Architecture Center: By April 24, 2025


You will be asked to agree to the following statement when submitting images for consideration:
● Participants may submit up to 6 images of works of art for consideration, one image per piece. Artwork must be no more than 5 years old. At least 1 piece per selected artist will be included in the exhibition.
● Each piece of art must be signed + dated somewhere on its surface (front, back, top, bottom, inside, outside)
● Prints will only be accepted in digital format
● 2D artwork must be framed
● If submitting multiple works of art as a series, please also submit a sketch of how the artwork should be displayed (relative location, order, etc.)
● Display space is limited; artwork will be selected from submitted images by the District Architecture Center
● Images of artwork that are not received by September 15, 2024 via the submission link will not be considered for inclusion in the exhibition
● Images you submit may be used by the District Architecture Center in promotion of this exhibition or future exhibitions
● Artwork not delivered to DAC by January 9, 2024 will not be included in the exhibition.

The Opening Reception will take place on January 29, 2025, from 6-8 pm at the District Architecture Center. You are encouraged to attend but are not required.

2024 Unbuilt Washington Awards Call for Entries

  • Date

    Thursday, May 23 2024-Monday, October 21 2024

  • Time

    Multi-day event.

The 2024 Unbuilt Washington Awards Program recognizes excellence in unbuilt projects both non-commissioned and commissioned projects. This competition is conducted by AIA|DC independently of other awards programs sponsored by the national American Institute of Architects and other AIA components.

Winners of this year’s competition will be exhibited on AIA|DC website.



The Washington UNBUILT design Awards program has a unique role to play in supporting a vibrant intellectual discourse within the design community in the DC metro region. This program bridges the academic and professional communities by providing a forum for recognizing the contributions of both younger and established practitioners alike. Accordingly, the objective of the Awards program is to engage and recognize the broadest possible range of research, conceptual exploration and innovation in design thinking represented in the DC Metro region.


The program is open to all registered architects, landscape architects, planners, interior designers, associate architects and students in the Washington metropolitan area. The individual(s) submitting a given project must be (a) member(s) of the design team responsible for the work, though not necessarily the head of the team. Projects that have won this award in previous years are not eligible for resubmission.


The awards program is divided into two categories:

Unbuilt Non-Commissioned Projects:
Work without a client commission; e.g. design competitions, student work, hypothetical projects and research-oriented projects.

Unbuilt Commissioned Projects:
Work commissioned by a client: Planning, public space, urban design, buildings, interiors, transportation infrastructure, monuments, public art, or any other project type. There are no typological or geographical restrictions. Projects must not have begun construction by the submission deadline.


There shall be at least three jurors, which may include practicing and academic architects, interior designers, landscape architects, and members of (local or federal) commissions, boards, governing agencies, and members of the Washington building community. The jurors shall be selected and/or approved by the Executive Committee of AIA|DC. The composition of each jury is at the Chapter’s discretion and shall not be subject to review. The jury shall have the sole authority to determine whether and how many awards shall be awarded.


The Executive Committee of AIA|DC may appoint a committee to screen all entries and verify their compliance with the requirements specified herein. The Executive Committee may also appoint impartial individuals to assist the jury throughout the examination of submissions. No screening committee member or jury assistant shall participate or cast a vote during the jury proceedings. The Chapter staff shall assist in the screening of entries and may assist the jurors as needed during its deliberations.


The jury shall have the sole authority to determine which and how many awards are justified in each category, bearing in mind the objectives of the Mission Statement, which encourages a representative recognition of the breadth and depth of architectural design thinking in the DC Region.

Projects shall be considered on their own merits, regardless of size or scope. The jury’s decisions shall be final and not subject to review.


Projects must be registered and submitted online no later than 4:00PM on October 21, 2024. If you experience difficulties or miss the deadline and require assistance the next day, a $95 late fee will be assessed at that time. WE ENCOURAGE YOU TO UPLOAD YOUR SUBMISSION(S) EARLY.


All persons or firms substantially contributing to the design of the project must be given due credit, regardless of their professional disciplines. It is incumbent upon the submitting individual to provide a complete list of all participants substantially contributing to the design of the project, regardless of professional discipline. By submitting a project for consideration, the submitter represents and warrants to AIA|DC that he or she has provided a complete list. Failure to provide a complete list may result in disqualification and/or a referral of the matter to the appropriate ethics body of the national office of AIA. AIA|DC accepts no responsibility for incomplete lists. Interested persons are referred to AIA|DC’s “Awards Credits Policies,” copies of which may be obtained by contacting AIA|DC.



  • All projects are to be submitted online. Submissions can be no larger than 6MB each and must be submitted in PDF format. Winners may be asked to provide higher resolution files for printing.  
  • Drawings such as plans, sections and diagrams are not required but are strongly recommended.
  • Each submission shall be contained within one (1) pdf file, and is limited to a maximum of six (6) slides (PDF pages). 
  • The size and composition of each page is up to the submitter, however submitters are encouraged to consider that the jury will view the content as a projected image when preparing their submission.  The submissions will not be printed for the jury.
  • A text description of the project will be required as part of the online submission form (within the pdf). The description should clearly describe the problem and its solution.
  • Names, logos or other identifying marks within the PDF may be cause for disqualification.
  • Each submission must be for a single project. Entrants may submit as many projects as they wish with the appropriate entry fee.


Professional – $195 per submission
Student or 10 years or less from graduation - $40 per submission

All submissions must be registered, paid for, and submitted individually.