New Orioles stadium wins national design award

One month after it opened, Oriole Park at Camden Yards has won a national award -- an Urban Design Award of Excellence from the American Institute of Architects for the Camden Yards sports complex development plan.

Three architectural firms involved in the design, including RTKL Associates of Baltimore, will join representatives of the Maryland Stadium Authority and the Baltimore Orioles to receive the national award during the AIA's annual convention in Boston next month.


The recipients are Hellmuth Obata Kassabaum's Sports Facilities Group, lead architect for Oriole Park at Camden Yards and architect of record for the entire sports complex; RTKL Associates Inc. of Baltimore, the firm in charge of master planning and urban design for the 85-acre complex; and Wallace Roberts & Todd of Philadelphia, which was involved in urban design and landscape architecture for the site.

The master plan for Camden Yards among seven projects the AIA has selected for urban design awards, and one of two in which RTKL played a key role. RTKL will receive an award for being architect, master planner and urban designer of Reston Town Center, a project in Reston, Va. RTKL will share the award with Sasaki Associates Inc. of Watertown, Mass., which worked on the landscape architecture and design for the center, and Reston Town Centre Associates, the owner.


The Camden Yards master plan received a grand award last year from the Baltimore AIA chapter. It has been praised by critics nationwide for recommending ways to knit the 48,000-seat ballpark into the city.

Havre de Grace

The city of Havre de Grace broke ground recently for the Havre de Grace Municipal Office Complex, a one-level office building at 700 Pennington Ave. that will house administrative offices for city government, including the mayor's office and the planning, finance and public works departments, and new quarters for the City Council.

Getz Taylor Architects Inc., one of few architecture firms in Harford County, designed the building to have a rotunda that can hold 130 people, and offices for the planning and public works departments. Architect Gary Getz said he persuaded council members not to build an imitation colonial-style brick building by suggesting that the building be clad in stone from the local quarry, run by the Arundel Sand and Gravel Co.

The stone is similar to the Port Deposit granite used in many old structures in Maryland and is being supplied free as long as the city brings it to the construction site, Mr. Getz said.

"Even though the stone is being supplied for no cost, the labor of installing uncut stone is very high," Mr. Getz said. "Therefore, we utilized stained shingles on half of the front facade, and concrete block on the rear facade. The building is designed to be long and narrow so as to appear larger than it actually is, and to create a backdrop for the round, solid stone council chamber located in the front."

Grubb Contractors Inc. of Port Deposit is the contractor, and the cost is $800,000. Work will be completed by early 1993. The Building Owners and Managers Association will hold a briefing on the proposed Special Benefit District for downtown Baltimore in which property owners would pay more taxes for increased security and sanitation services.

The district would be bounded roughly by Centre and Greene streets, the Jones Falls Expressway and the south shore of the Inner Harbor. The meeting will be next Wednesday from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. at the Center Club, inside the USF&G; tower at 100 E. Pratt St. The cost is $10 a person. Reservations are necessary and may be made by calling the association at 752-3318.


Around the region

* Students Works from the University of Maryland's School of Architecture will go on display at the gallery of the Baltimore chapter of the American Institute of Architects, 11 1/2 W. Chase St., starting with a reception tomorrow from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

* McShea & Co., a real estate investment company based in Gaithersburg, announced that Mike Norcio has become a senior vice president and member of the leasing department's executive committee. He was a senior vice president for Barnes, Morris, Pardoe and Foster and manager of the Maryland office of Long & Foster Commercial.