Fay Jones School Faculty, Alumni Honored in 2022 AIA Arkansas Awards Program

CO-OP Ramen in Bentonville received a 2022 Honor Award from AIA Arkansas, the Arkansas Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
Timothy Hursley

CO-OP Ramen in Bentonville received a 2022 Honor Award from AIA Arkansas, the Arkansas Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

Faculty and alumni of the Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design at the U of A were recently recognized with awards handed out by the Arkansas Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

Design awards and other honors were announced on Oct. 28 during the 2022 AIA Arkansas State Convention in Rogers. Projects by Fay Jones School faculty and alumni won five Honor Awards, four Merit Awards and one Citation Award in the Design Awards program. This year, 36 design entries were submitted by member firms, and the jury selected the winners from 10 finalists.

In addition, Katherine Lashley (B.Arch. '16), AIA, licensed architect at Marlon Blackwell Architects in Fayetteville, was named the 2022 Emerging Professional.

The design Honor Awards were given for the Bank OZK Headquarters in Little Rock, designed by Polk Stanley Wilcox Architects; the Coler Mountain Bike Preserve and Ozark Park Pavilion, both in Bentonville, both designed by Modus Studio; CO-OP Ramen in Bentonville and Shaw Residence in Fayetteville, both designed by Marlon Blackwell Architects.

Bank OZK Headquarters

The Bank OZK Headquarters hosts a walkable multi-phased campus master plan centered on environmentally sound principals with a collaborative focus. Blurring lines between inside and out, the entire site is a place of work, respite and interaction with nature. Bunkered under the building and tucked against the grade, the 388-space parking deck is undetectable. Site retention becomes water features in the park-like green that the building bridges. Two primary office wings are linked by a five-story atrium acting as a vertical collaborative center, with conference rooms cantilevered into the space. The curving roof and clerestories bring light from above. The building stretches east-west with deep horizontal blades on the south. Vertical fritted glass fins on east and west mitigate glare while reducing heat gain. The headquarters and 40 branch banks are powered by a bank-owned solar array that provides 100% of electrical power.

The Bank OZK Headquarters project team included Patty Opitz, AIA (B.Arch. '04); David Porter, AIA (B.Arch. '82); Reese Rowland, FAIA (B.Arch. '90); JB Mullins, AIA (B.Arch. '02); Nikki Crane, Assoc. AIA; David Rogers, AIA (B.Arch. '91); Laura Hendrix, ASID; and Alexandra Ward, ASID.

Coler Mountain Bike Preserve

Completed in 2020, Coler Mountain Bike Preserve is crafted in a vernacular palette of raw steel, natural wood and formed concrete. The 17 miles of trails are populated with pavilions, bridges, campsites, amenities and ride elements that take full advantage of the cross section of the Ozarks. Coler is a unique respite devoted to connecting family, friends, enthusiasts and professionals to nature. The bike trail system serves all levels of the sport, with every element tied to a common design language. The design team programed, placed and fully designed the entire palette of the visitor experience, blending nature and man in harmonious play. Unique parts of the trail include the Homestead, Ghost Barn and The Berm. The ground level and loft of the Homestead Barn interact as a three-dimensional maze, a play structure and shade pavilion. The Ghost Barn is a small structure that serves as the backdrop and operative stage for the homestead lawn and offers a smaller scale intimate space for reflection. The Berm, a ruin emerging from the hillside, is crafted of highly textured concrete. The Berm is home to Airship Coffee and acts as the proverbial front porch to the valley trail. A rooftop terrace and a beer garden in the holler complete the ensemble.

The Coler Mountain Bike Preserve project team included Chris Baribeau, AIA (B.Arch. '03); Michael Pope, AIA (B.Arch. '09); Shane Maloney, Assoc. AIA (B.Arch. '16); Jason Wright, Assoc. AIA (B.Arch. '04); Cory Meyer, Assoc. AIA; Jake Mullins, Assoc. AIA; Alex Cogbill; Paul Siebenthal; Kevin Brown (B.Arch. '13); Dan Daniel; Reice Brummett; and Seth McIntosh.

Osage Park Pavilion

The Osage Park Pavilion is a gateway and centerpiece for Osage Park at the north end of a small municipal airport in Bentonville. The pavilion, inspired by aircraft wing design, lifts seamlessly out of the ground with a light, airy structure and Arkansas-sourced cypress facade. As the pavilion rises from the earth with a clear polycarbonate roof, the occupiable green roof becomes a viewing platform for watching planes take off and land. The existing wetlands at Osage Park serve in water purification, water storage and processing of carbon and other nutrients. Boardwalks are used for circulation throughout the park to preserve existing wetland and riparian areas. 

The Ozark Park Pavilion project team included Chris Baribeau, AIA (B.Arch. '03); Michael Pope, AIA (B.Arch. '09); and Jody Verser, AIA (B.Arch. '10).

CO-OP Ramen

CO-OP Ramen is meant to be an oasis, set apart from the busy market outside and the hectic pace of Bentonville. A layer of steel beaded curtains inside the glass screens views into the restaurant from the exterior and reduces and softens the intense western light. A wooden ceiling extends across the restaurant, providing a soft, warm light. Made from construction-quality plywood, the ceiling and booths are dignified through fine craftsmanship and detailing of the exposed edges. Light from concealed fixtures travels through the deeply covered ceiling. The warmth of the wood contrasts with the concrete block walls. A 12-foot-tall living green wall is a counterpoint to the concrete block walls around the open kitchen where guests can watch the chefs at work. The design is an example of something common being elevated and honored through thoughtful care and invention. At only 2,000 square feet, CO-OP Ramen creates a variety of spaces that remain unified by the design.

The CO-Op Ramen project team included Marlon Blackwell, FAIA; Meryati Johari Blackwell, AIA; Stephen Reyenga, Assoc. AIA (B.Arch. '13); William Burks, Assoc. AIA (B.Arch. '10); and Callie Kesel, AIA. Blackwell, FAIA, is Distinguished Professor and the E. Fay Jones Chair in Architecture in the Fay Jones School.

Shaw Residence

The low-slung body of the Shaw Residence is a simple rectilinear form that begins as a figural, expressive front to a planar, framed rear. The brink on the main façade is textured to emphasize the public face while the southern, rear façade is painted steel plate cladding giving the appearance of being cut open and exposed. The garage extends to the east, connected to the main house by an art studio. Warm, tactile materials fill the interior, including a rift cut white oak ceiling throughout the house and outside on the covered terrace. Brick reappears inside for the fireplace fronts in the living room and main bedroom. Polished concrete floors are warmed by radiant heat, with a herringbone stone tile border. The courtyard and covered terrace expand the living area of the house. A compluvium roof collects rainwater for irrigation. The terrace serves as a brise soleil and a bridge between the house's wings. With a geothermal system to provide heating and cooling, high efficiency lighting and plumbing fixtures, and insulation exceeding the energy code, the house is extremely efficient, quiet and comfortable.

The Shaw Residence project team included Marlon Blackwell, FAIA; Meryati Johari Blackwell, AIA; Kertis Weatherby, AIA, Leed Ap; Spencer Curtis, AIA (B.Arch. '14); David Jaehning, AIA; Stephen Kesel, AIA; Callie Kesel, Assoc. AIA; William Burks, Assoc. AIA (B.Arch. '10); and Stephen Reyenga, Assoc. AIA (B.Arch. '13).

Merit Awards

The design Merit Awards were given to 1424 SoMa in Little Rock, designed by AMR Architects, Inc.; House on the Point in Rogers, designed by John Starnes, architect; and Muse Bowling Green in Bowling Green, Kentucky, and Valley Springs High School in Valley Springs, Arkansas, both designed by Modus Studio.

1424 SoMa is a striking addition to the burgeoning SoMa district, while respecting the scale and historic nature of the neighborhood. The living units are a mix of studios and lofts that share a courtyard for gathering on the second floor. The courtyard provides amenities for tenants and breaks down the building's scale to a more pedestrian level. Two living units occupy the ground floor and allow a live/work option with small retail bays. SoMa is a large mostly residential neighborhood with multiple overlapping historic districts. It has an eclectic mix of buildings from early 1900s Victorian architecture to more mid-century small-scale retail buildings. 1424 SoMa is one of very few new-construction projects in the district and is unique in its more modern design. Height, scale and proportion had to be considered by the Design Overlay Commission for their appropriateness.

The 1424 SoMa project team included Jonathan Opitz, AIA (B.Arch. '02); James Sullivan, AIA (B.Arch. '07); Adam Day, AIA (B.Arch. '08); Kate East; Kyle Heflin, Assoc. AIA (B.Arch. '15); and Caroline Smith.

House on the Point is located on Beaver Lake. Positioned on a cliff at the waterfront, the project offers stunning views. The house is cantilevered 37 feet out over the water. By using a combination of ICF and steel construction for the overall structure, the designer was able to achieve an energy efficient design. The design itself sought to use inexpensive materials and simple overall forms to help achieve a cost-efficient yet dynamic result.

House on the Point was designed by John Starnes, AIA (B.Arch. '06).

Muse Bowling Green is a 218-unit student housing complex adjacent to Western Kentucky University. One- and two-bedroom units are in four "flats" buildings. Thirty-three detached, four-bedroom urban houses are assembled in clusters of three homes around residential-style courtyards. The site features a central barn pavilion, resort-style swimming pool, fitness center, hammock park, vegetable gardens and lawn with fire pit. The design concept for the barn pavilion, with its black-stained cypress exterior, is inspired by the once-ubiquitous tobacco barns dotting the terrain. The natural surroundings of Bowling Green take center stage against this simple pallet of black and white buildings.

The Muse Bowling Green project team included Chris Baribeau, AIA (B.Arch. '03); Kiara Luers, AIA (B.Arch. '16); and Aaron Speaks, AIA.

Valley Springs High School sits on a prominent corner of campus, representing the community's historic commitment to education. This new two-story, 9-12th grade facility breathes life into the rural campus that hasn't seen major construction in 30 years. The translucent glow on the exterior of the library serves as a reminder of the former greenhouse that was once a visual marker on this site. The library and the contrasting computer lap mass above combine to craft a new identity for the district and serve as a new landmark. The grand entry pays homage to the historic stone architecture on campus with the gabion baskets containing hand-placed limestone from a local quarry. The remainder of the building is clad in a maintenance-free metal panel. The two exterior spaces provide views back to the campus and spark energy for learning with the expectation of experiments and agricultural exploration. Every room, including the janitor's closet, is washed in natural light. Natural wood tones provide warmth and grab attention when needed.

The Valley Springs High School project team included Josh Siebert, Assoc. AIA (B.Arch. '02); Matt Poe, AIA (B.Arch. '12); and Laura Ramirez, Assoc. AIA.

A design Citation Award was given to the FAA Air Traffic Control Tower, designed by Cromwell Architects Engineers, Inc.

Responding to an open design competition for the rapid deployment and replacement of current facilities nationwide, this design is a 12-foot prefabricated shell module that stacks to meet the varying height constraints. Each module shell is composed of an assembly of concrete fins, thin shell precast concrete wall panels and a mixture of clear and photovoltaic glass. Vertical circulation elements, utility chases, and air traffic control tower program requirements, such as meeting and mechanical rooms, would all be housed within this shell. Using prefabricated precast modules increases the speed, efficiency and quality of the construction. Each module would be shop-built in controlled factory conditions and shipped to the site for rapid on-site deployment. The use of precast concrete and prefabricated construction also decreases the amount of material wasted during construction, adding to the overall sustainable footprint of the towers.

The FAA Air Traffic Control Tower project team included Ben Hartter, AIA; Amber Banks, AIA; and Chris East, AIA, LEED AP (B.Arch. '03).

Katherine Lashley was honored as the Emerging Professional for AIA Arkansas. This award is intended to recognize a new professional, practicing for 10 years or less, who has expanded the role of the architect through civic participation and professional mentorship.

Lashley is a licensed architect in Marlon Blackwell Architects in Fayetteville. She graduated with honors from the Fay Jones School in May 2016. Immediately after graduation, Lashley joined Fennell Purifoy Architects in Little Rock, where she was encouraged to get involved with AIA Arkansas, gaining experience and earning her license. During her time in Little Rock, she also served on the City of Little Rock Board of Adjustments. She returned to Fayetteville in November 2021. She has been an active member of AIA Arkansas for five years, serving on the Emerging Professionals and Young Architects Committee, Executive Committee and Public Relations Committee. As a member of the EPYA Committee, she has been a part of several initiatives to support emerging professionals, including serving as associate director in 2020 during the height of COVID-19 and helping launch the MERGE Mentorship Program in 2021.


Tara Ferkel, communications specialist
Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design
479-575-4704, tferkel@uark.edu

Michelle Parks, director of communications
Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design
479-575-4704, mparks17@uark.edu


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