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Awards

Top Design Award for Madeira City Hall

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Top architecture award goes to Wannemacher Jensen for transformative Madeira Beach City Hall

The Dean Rowe Award is AIA Tampa Bay’s highest annual design honor

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (November 21, 2016) — Tampa Bay’s chapter of the American Institute of Architects awarded St. Petersburg-based Wannemacher Jensen Architects (WJA) with the region’s highest design honor at its flagship annual event this month.

The H. Dean Rowe, FAIA Award for Design Excellence recognized WJA’s design of the acclaimed Madeira Beach City Hall. Notably, a city hall had never won any design award in the Tampa Bay region. Arguably the most compelling city hall around Tampa Bay, the 14-acre municipal complex also includes a fire station, recreation center, and large community park and event space.

The jury commented: “Civic presence with simple modern materials and forms. Project beautifully engages the site with strong parti. Creates a grand civic experience on a tight civic budget.”

Jason Jensen said: “It’s often difficult to do inspiring civic design – politics can easily get in the way – but Madeira leaders have a vision for a truly unique destination.”

Project Manager Harold Somarriba said: “The project provided opportunity to weave large multi-use public space with core civic activity. The highly functional municipal structure blends with parkland to form a community center. It fosters new relationships between public space and public service, allowing exterior circulation to be used by all as event spaces.”

The award was presented to the Madeira Board of Commissioners on December 13.

About the Dean Rowe Award for Design Excellence

Recognizing built projects by licensed individuals or firms from any category, the highest honor for design excellence awarded by AIA Tampa Bay is named for the late H. Dean Rowe, FAIA – an award-winning designer and mentor to many of Tampa’s talented architects. Each year, AIA Tampa Bay honors architects, philanthropists, public servants, and organizations committed to improving communities through design excellence, and for outstanding accomplishments and service to the architecture profession and the community.

About AIA Tampa Bay

AIA (American Institute of Architects) Tampa Bay is the professional association for architects and the architecture field. AIA Tampa Bay is the regional chapter representing approximately 650 members in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Polk, Hernando, Citrus, Sumter and Pasco Counties. The AIA provides programs and services including educational programs, design competitions, community service programs and serves as the united voice of the architecture profession. The regional chapter office is located in Ybor City.

More about the Madeira Beach City Hall complex

The City of Madeira Beach is making leaps in its continued evolution as the unofficial progressive flagship of Pinellas County beach cities. Designers sought to create an atmosphere that might inspire new perspectives or ideas, or even encourage new people to take part in municipal meetings and get engaged with the local government of a small forward-thinking city.

The 14-acre complex brings a litany of new opportunities and amenities for the public as well as public servants. The waterfront Recreation Center, City Hall and Fire Station were designed as a community park complex with civic presence.

Inspiration drew from aspects of nature, fitness, outdoor activity and waterfront views. The new city hall’s basic program requirements include office areas, building department services, commission chamber, multipurpose room, a small gym, and a covered boardwalk.

With use of extensive Low-E glass, flexible interior office space, covered exterior circulation, and an elevated structure; the building promotes opportunities to reduce energy consumption, actively engage with the outdoor environment, and promote wellness for city staff and the general public in a positive and familiar atmosphere. This city hall is truly for all residents to play, work, and govern.

The buildings were designed for maximum efficiency, while taking advantage of the full waterfront exposure for both the new city hall and recreation center. Floor to ceiling windows in the multi-purpose room and fitness center offer waterfront views, as do the city hall offices. A covered boardwalk fronts the city hall entrance, then wraps around to create a deck behind the multi-purpose building. The special event spaces are all adjacent to the water.

The commission chamber is available to residents for community events. The chamber is extracted from the typical interior location and is exposed as a transparent volume that serves both as a place of civic engagement and as a lantern that invitespeople to the expansive park and waterfront edge.

A permanent stage and concert area has attracted such acts as Sugar Ray, Boy George with Culture Club, Everclear, and The Wailers. Three baseball/softball fields, two tennis courts, and a basketball court each have water views. R.O.C. Park, initiated by nonprofit Remember Our Children, features paved walkways, fountains, engraved stones, a “Lock Palm Tree” and sitting areas spread throughout. A reflection area looks over the waters of Boca Ciega Bay, and the liveliness of the recreation center and patrons enjoying the grounds foster a positive and familial atmosphere.

The former city hall was about 50-years-old when demolished in 2014. The City of Madeira Beach opened its new City Hall in 2015. The complex is designed to last 75 years.

Info and images available at: WJArc.com/Projects/Madeira-Beach-municipal-complex.

Additional images and materials readily available.

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FL Business Observer names Jensen 40 under 40

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Jason Jensen, Principal, Wannemacher Jensen Architects (38)

Jason Jensen is proof that interns can become owners. According to the principal of Wannemacher Jensen Architects, all it required was “taking ownership before actually taking ownership.”

For Jensen, that meant finding a way to make an impact at the business and working to grow the firm from day one. For example, he encouraged the business to submit for design awards and join in public art displays to get its name out — both of which brought notoriety to the firm. “It was the firm’s name, not my name,” Jensen says.

It’s part of the reason why he was able to propel his way up the ladder so quickly, becoming a partner only seven years into his career.

Read more at the Business Observer here.

Dunedin Fire Station 61

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This new 7,500 sf Fire Station was built adjacent to the site of the existing outdated Fire Station. The site lies within a residential neighborhood and is situated within a City Park.

Program requirements include three apparatus bays plus one additional glass-enclosed half-bay to display the City’s vintage Fire Truck. The office area includes a training room, reception, control center, mechanical and electrical services. The living quarters consist of eight dormitories, individual unisex bathrooms, a fitness room, and a large day room with kitchen and dining. An outdoor patio and grill area provides an extension of the day room. Maintenance free exterior materials, low or no maintenance interior finishes, plenty of natural light and an attractive façade facing the residential street all contribute to this Station’s curb appeal.

Winner of the 2015 People’s Choice Award.

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Largo Community Center Racks Up Awards

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The Largo Community Center is a 30,000+ sq foot, LEED certified building that features three sprung-floor studio rooms, a center-stage ballroom with wooden floors, commercial kitchen, fitness room, art studio, card room, outdoor patio and gazebo, lounge and more.

Designed by Wannemacher Jensen the Community Center won statewide Horizon Award for new municipal utility construction in the $6 million-to-$15 million category.

The Largo Community Center is the first LEED platinum (highest LEED rating) public access building in Florida. In recognition of the certification, two plaques will be mounted in the building.

Within the category that includes commercial and governmental buildings, it is only the sixth award recipient in Florida and only the 410th project in the world to receive this designation.

The city obtained federal government energy conservation grants to acquire a system that generates 17 percent of the building’s electrical needs from the sun.

Read more at Tampa Bay Newspapers.

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