3 buildings capture design awards

One has the feel of an old schoolhouse. Another retains the grandeur of historic Mount Vernon. A third reflects the creativity of Maryland's largest fine arts institute.

All three are residential projects in Baltimore, and all three have been judged to be among the area's best buildings. The Barrister Court apartments in Washington Village, the Peabody Inn in Mount Vernon, and The Commons, a student housing complex in Bolton Hill, were chosen to receive honor awards in the 1993 design awards competition.


Sponsored by the Baltimore chapter of the American Institute of Architects, the competition drew 67 entries.

A grand winner will be announced at an awards ceremony Oct. 22 from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. at Bryn Mawr School. Another seven projects won merit awards.


Selected by Philadelphia architects Peter Bohlin, Alan Greenberger and Susan Maxman, this year's top winners underscore the wide range of opportunities for architects in housing design, even in recessionary times.

They also reflect a national trend in which design juries are honoring small-scaled, socially conscious work.

In Baltimore, the 32-unit Barrister Court apartment building at 1300 Washington Blvd. represented an effort by Cho, Wilks & Benn Architects and developer Bettyjean Murphy to convert an 1896 school to affordable housing without losing its "schoolhouse feel." Design team members included George Holback, Jillian Storms and Jim Mills. James W. Miller Inc. was the contractor.

The Peabody Inn, by Murphy & Dittenhafer, is another example of sensitive historic preservation on a tight budget. Four vacant townhouses at 601-607 N. Charles St. were converted to an inn for the International Elderhostel program.

The architect's solution was to keep the Charles Street side of the buildings intact but to open up the back of the row to become a new front door for the 96-bed inn. Design team members included Michael Murphy, Frank Dittenhafer, Todd Grove, James Sutner and Arnie Russo. Struever Bros., Eccles & Rouse was the contractor.

The 350-bed Commons at 120 McMechen St. was the first new building constructed by Maryland Institute since 1907. Schamu, Machowski, Doo & Associates fit the new housing into the Bolton Hill historic district while expressing the individuality of an arts school. Design team members included Peter Doo, Frank Sica, Keith Scott, Vonda Alberson, Mark Demshak, Jeffrey Gay, and Christy Rice. Roy Kirby & Sons was the general contractor.


Planning and Urban Design


*Sports Center USA plan for Pier 4 Power Plant. Architect: Design Collective. Client: Sports Center USA.

Unbuilt projects

* Coastal Research and Environmental Geochemistry Center, Solomons. Architect: Ayers Saint Gross Inc. Client: University of Maryland.

* White Hall, a private residence in Betterton. Architect: Beard Warwick Cornell Associates. Client: Kenneth Warwick.

Built projects

* Carroll County Library and Senior Center, Mount Airy. Architect: Cho, Wilks & Benn. Client: Carroll County. Contractor: P.J. Scarpulla Inc.


* Goucher College Admissions Office, Towson. Architect: Cho, Wilks & Benn. Client: Goucher College. Contractor: P.J. Scarpulla Inc.

* Greater Baltimore Medical Center Obstetrics/Acute Care Expansion. Architect: RTKL Associates Inc. Client: GBMC. Contractor: J. Vinton Schafer & Sons.

* Orchard Street Church. Architects: Kelly, Clayton & Mojzisek Architects with Anthony N. Johns Jr. Client: Baltimore Urban League. Contractor: Struever Bros., Eccles & Rouse Inc.