This year, to celebrate it’s 100th Anniversary, AIA Florida initiated a statewide, online competition to choose among Florida’s favorite buildings. The competition was called “Florida Architecture: 100 Years 100 Places.” AIA Florida’s local chapters initially nominated many buildings – and a panel of architects narrowed the list down to a top 100. Voting was open to the public from March 13 through April 6. AIA Florida also recognized the top building in 13 different categories, including performing arts, museum, and residential projects. The basic intent of the competition was to bring an awareness of architecture (and architects) to the general public.
The response was wildly successful; over 2.4 million votes were cast. On April 18, AIA Florida announced the top five winners at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach Hotel ( designed by Morris Lapidus, and originally opened in 1954) which took first place in the competition. The next five winners are:
Second place: Mandi’s Chapel in Live Oak, Fla., designed by John Zona, AIA
Third place: The Baughman Center at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Fla., designed by John Zona, AIA
Fourth place: The University of North Florida Student Union in Jacksonville, Fla., designed by Rink Design Partnership
Fifth place: Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Fla., designed by Marion Sims Wyeth
AIA Gainesville is thrilled that two of the top 100 buildings (Mandi’s Chapel and the Baughman Center) are within our area. Don Yoshino, FAIA, the chairman of AIA Florida’s 100th Anniversary Committee, stated the success of this event best: “We are elated that so many Floridians took the time to learn about the beautiful structures in their communities.”