Watson Tate Savory (WTS) is delighted to report that our projects received four design awards from the Columbia chapter of the American Institute of Architects on Thursday, November 1, at the biennial awards ceremony held at 1208 Washington Place.

WTS received the inaugural “Divine Detail” Award for Coastal Carolina University’s Kenneth E. Swain Hall. WTS was also recognized with two Merit Awards: a Merit Award for New Construction for the University of South Carolina’s Spurrier Indoor Football Practice Facility, and a Merit Award for Historic Preservation/Adaptive Reuse/Renovation for Western Carolina University’s Brown Dining Hall Renovation and Expansion. Toward the end of the evening, WTS was presented with an Honor Award for Historic Preservation/Adaptive Reuse/Renovation for the City of Columbia’s Water and Wastewater Distribution Facility completed last year. The Honorable Mayor Benjamin was in attendance to receive the AIA Honor Award on behalf of the City of Columbia.

Gene Bell, Mayor Steve Benjamin, and Tom Savory receiving the AIA Columbia Honor Award for Historic Preservation/Adaptive Reuse for City of Columbia’s Water and Wastewater Distribution Facility project

The Honor Award for Historic Preservation/Adaptive Reuse/Renovation was presented to WTS and Mayor Benjamin for the City of Columbia’s Water and Wastewater Distribution Facility. Margaret Butler, AIA LEED AP, Vice President at McCarty Holsaple McCarty Architects & Interior Designers, and this year’s AIA Columbia Jury Chair shared:

“This is a great high-level design for this type of municipal client. It sets an admirable standard for future public works projects. We were impressed by the city’s investment in the site. Taking over the brownfield and giving it back to the City sets a high standard for other public buildings in the city and the state. Client and the owner should both be commended in this project.

It is beautifully executed beginning from the community-focused and environmentally sustainable site masterplan down to the well-detailed envelope system and handsome interiors. Thoughtful and deliberate moves on each building signal a hierarchy of entry. The jury commended the care, thought and attention to detail in all, especially the sun shading. This project crushed it!”

Honor Award for Historic Preservation/Adaptive Reuse/Renovation: City of Columbia’s Water and Wastewater Distribution Facility

Butler shared the following comments about the University of South Carolina’s Spurrier Indoor Football Practice Facility project:

“With a modest budget the architect admirably elevates a pre-engineered metal building as it dramatically terminates this major campus space. We found this to be a very sound solution at all levels and commend the refined detailing which leaves nothing to chance. The jury felt the scale of the facade is in balance with the scale of the space and particularly liked the translucent panels which bring daylight in and allow the building to glow at night. We applaud the campus for prominently positioning this typically utilitarian structure in a way that enriches the campus plan and provides a wonderful backdrop to football tailgating.”

Merit Award for New Construction: University of South Carolina’s Spurrier Indoor Football Practice Facility

Butler continued with the following comments about Western Carolina University’s Brown Building Renovation and Addition project:

“The jury felt this was a successful design to complex challenges. The functions were artfully reorganized on the site to create a dynamic and inviting campus amenity which allows views to soar beyond to the mountains. The building is well grounded and invites students to enjoy beautifully detailed interior and exterior spaces. It works well with the steep topography. This building has changed the narrative of good architecture on campus and sets a high benchmark for future university buildings.”

Merit Award for Historic Preservation/Adaptive Reuse/Renovation: Western Carolina University’s Brown Dining Hall Renovation and Expansion

Butler said of the Coastal Carolina University project winning a “Divine Detail” Award:

“We loved the trellis – very well designed – as well as the deeply punched windows which recognize the appropriateness of this type of detail in a traditionally inspired design. The study of the historic precedents was key to the success of this project!”

Divine Detail Award: Coastal Carolina University’s Swain Hall

Watson Tate Savory is pleased to have had the opportunity to work with these fantastic clients on exceptional projects.