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AIA Greater Columbia @ First Thursday, “2019 People’s Choice Awards,” to Take Place at 1530 Main Street at May 2nd First Thursday
Clemson University: School of Architecture: A Library for Cottontown

(Columbia, S.C.) April 25, 2019 –

The American Institute of Architects Greater Columbia section (AIAGC) is excited to announce that it will be opening the doors of the Center for Architecture at 1530 Main Street for First Thursday (May 2nd) from 6pm to 9pm!

All are welcome to stop in, have a free glass of wine and explore an exhibition of 12 unique design visions for a Cottontown Library Branch in the historic Cottontown neighborhood. During the spring semester of 2019, 80 second year undergraduate students in the Clemson University’s School of Architecture (CUSoA) explored what a new library branch would look like for Cottontown. 12 finalists as selected by a jury of AIAGC board members and Clemson professors will be on exhibition for First Thursday to participate in AIAGC’s 2019 People’s Choice Award.

As part of AIAGC’s efforts to engage with the public about the important role of great design, First Thursday visitors will be welcomed to vote on their favorite project. The project with the winning design will be awarded a $250 prize at 8:30pm! Additionally, a Grand Prize project selected by AIAGC board members will receive a $500 scholarship prize.

While the project is speculative in nature, students gain invaluable experience by having their work placed in a real setting – allowing them to gain insight into what it is like to design for Columbia’s community by studying its history, the unique conditions of the Cottontown neighborhood, and the goals of North Main Street development. Through the CUSoA-AIAGC Partnership, these students have further benefited from meeting with local architects about their own work and experience in the Cottontown District and held two design reviews as their projects progressed with AIAGC architects in Clemson. CUSoA and AIAGC hope that the designs exhibited here support an ongoing discussion about how thoughtful collaborative design can promote cultural equity and serve as a catalyst for the revitalization of one of the city’s most vibrant and important historic districts.

“Mentorship is so crucial to the development of an architect and their career,” states AIAGC board president, Adriane McGillis, AIA, a senior associate at Stevens & Wilkinson, “Inviting these students to come to our community and then getting to visit them throughout the semester is a key to building bridges with the newest generation of architects who will be influencing the very face of our communities in only a few short years.”

CUSoA – AIAGC Partnership organizer Wendy Bertani Bergmann, AIA, said, “It is incredibly refreshing to be a part of this relationship with Clemson. While the students benefit from having practicing architects join their professors in their design reviews, we as professionals are also inspired by how talented and creative these students are so early on in their careers. Student projects bring fresh perspectives to our communities and it’s important to maintain this partnership moving forward, bringing new ideas and great design to Columbia.”

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Register now for the AIAGC April Monthly Membership Meeting & Tour:

Down Under Columbia
Historic Columbia

Tuesday, April 23
5:30pm – 7:00pm

Equitable Arcade Building, 1332 Main St. Columbia, 29201

Join AIAGC & Historic Columbia for the April Monthly Membership Meeting & Tour: Down Under Columbia at the Equitable Arcade Building!

The Arcade, specifically the basement level, has long intrigued Columbia citizens and has served as a consistently popular location for Historic Columbia’s Behind-the-Scenes Tours.  Come find out the story behind this mysterious city landmark! 

Pizza from Stoner’s Pizza and beer/wine will be provided!

AIA members: $20
Non-AIA members: $25

Register online at:

Come join us for Scribbles and Spirits on Tuesday, March 26 from 5:30-7:30pm, at Boyd Plaza in front of the Columbia Museum of Art.  Columbia, SC Architect Curt Davis will lead the group in AIAGC’s first sketching event!  Paper and sharpies will be provided.  Please bring with you whatever additional sketching implements you’d like to use.  Join us afterwards at Rooftop Sheraton for food and drinks.  First 15 people to arrive get a free beer!

Andrew, AIA LEED AP is an Architect with Garvin Design Group

What is your role on the Board? Past President, 2017

How long have you served on the Board? 6 years

How long have you been a member of AIASC? 11 years

How long have you been working in industry? 11 years

Where are you from? Surfside Beach, SC

Where did you go to school?

Socastee High School and Dutch Fork High School

BA in Architecture from Clemson University

M.Arch from The University of Oregon

How do you feel you play a role in advocating for South Carolina architects?

As an AIA Columbia board member, I feel my role is to serve our members in any way I can. That entails listening to grievances, volunteering my time to organize events, and using my experience and knowledge base to improve the quality of benefits AIA members in our area receive.

What is your favorite part of serving on the Board of Directors?

It’s always fun to be “in the know” on all things AIA. Being on the board allows me to keep track of cool events on the local, state, and national level.

What future endeavors do you see for AIASC?

AIASC has a lot going for it. We have 3 fairly large sections that each anchor the upstate, midlands, and low country while providing top-notch member benefits. We are just beginning to see the potential of what collaboration can do to strengthen each of our programming efforts to capitalize on things already happening in our state.

Congratulations to Quackenbush Architects + Planners for receiving a 2018 Divine Detail Award for the University of South Carolina Center for Health and Well-Being. “The 68,000 square foot facility, centrally located in a thriving university campus, embodies a new paradigm for student health centers: a venue dedicated to the holistic pursuit of wellness and well-being.”

#AIADesignAwards #AIAGC2018 #AIAColumbia #AIAGC #DivineDetail

Photography: Charles Davis Smith and Rion Rizzo