Region Receives Grant for Sustainable Design Technical Assistance
The Colorado Springs community and Pikes Peak Region will be one of six communities nationwide to receive assistance from The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Sustainable Design Assistance Team (SDAT) program.
Later this year, a Sustainable Design Assessment Team, comprised of national experts from AIA, will lend their expertise in working with the community to identify a vision and framework for a more sustainable and livable environment within the Pikes Peak Region. 
Like this effort, the local AIA Colorado South members participated in and sponsored a number of recent planning events in attempts to bring together key stakeholders. This legacy includes the Livable Communities Charrette, which AIA Colorado South organized in June 2010, and the Great Streets/Great Skylines AIA 150 project in 2006. The SDAT effort will build on past efforts and attempt to harnesses the energy and resources from a wide range of groups actively pursuing sustainability in our region. This effort will include realistic, success-proven implementation strategies. The SDAT process helps communities:
  • Understand their structure at various scales and contexts;
  • Explore interactions between ecological, sociological, economic and physical systems;
  • Visualize potential futures;
  • Articulate the qualities of a place;
  • Advance the principles of sustainable communities; and
  • Define the role of stakeholders and players in both the public and private sectors.
AIA Colorado South's ultimate goal is to assist in developing the Regional Sustainability Plan (a Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments (PPACG) effort currently under way with the public and local organizations) to assist with public policy, economic development and investment in the Pikes Peak Region. As one participating organization in the regional sustainability effort, City of Colorado Springs staff expect this work to provide a solid foundation for an examination of the 2001 City Comprehensive Plan, which is scheduled for next year. 
Lee Quill, FAIA, of Cunningham | Quill Architects, PLLC, in Washington, D.C., has been selected as the leader of the Pikes Peak Region SDAT. Quill is recognized as a leader in design having received many awards and lectured for national organizations including the National Building Museum, the Urban Land Institute (ULI), and the American Planning Association. Most recently, he served as a juror for the EPA National Awards for Smart Growth Achievement. Experts such as Quill will work closely with the City staff, PPACG and others in the region on this multidisciplinary effort. 
The award comes from the AIA's Center for Communities by Design, a national forum dedicated to positively influencing the quality of life in our nation?s communities. The purpose is to help communities across the country achieve sustainable environments through multidisciplinary planning and move from conceptual to actual.

For more than 150 years, members of The American Institute of Architects (AIA) have worked with each other and their communities to create more valuable, healthy, secure and sustainable buildings and cityscapes. AIA Colorado South is one of four chapters within AIA Colorado. This chapter is comprised of members from 18 counties in south and southeastern Colorado and includes the cities of Colorado Springs, Alamosa, Pueblo and La Junta.
More information is available through the Pikes Peak Region SDAT website at ppsdat.org.
View March 2011