Johnston City Hall recognized for elevating community through architecture

Johnston City Hall was honored with an AIA Impact Award at the 2024 AIA Iowa Spring Conference. The award recognizes projects that represent design excellence and directly benefit social, humanitarian, community, or environmental issues.

Multimedia Creative Strategist

Johnston City Hall

Merit Award

This new city hall is situated as the civic core of a new town center development in a growing mid-western suburb. The new facility combines municipal office functions with community spaces inside and out. The building was designed as an example for the community – to drive innovation, conserve energy, and utilize sustainable materials. Both the building and the site support community growth and expansion with flexibility to accommodate evolving needs. Spaces such as the large “front porch” of the city hall can host various types and sizes of events and is surrounded by site amenities such as a splash pad, a skating rink, a bicycle pump track and large open green spaces. The building becomes a backdrop for a site that acts as a front yard for the community, serving as a forum, plaza, amphitheater, market and events space to welcome and support its community.

Jury Comments:  The challenges of creating a culture in places like this are really significant and difficult because there’s not much around. The context is really very spare. All too often we look at these areas as sort of a suburban playground for developers. This could have been a throwaway neutral building, and they really put thought and detail into this.  We were just impressed at elevating what could have been a very prosaic building and investing in it with a good sense of design. There really is an elegance to this, and we really should all be so lucky to have a building in our community like this.

Johnston City Hall was featured during Biennale de Architettura in Venice in 2023 and has also been recognized by 1000 Friends of Iowa as the winner of a  Best Development Award in the New Civic category in 2022.

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