Mayor's Urban Design Awards Entries Sought by August 1

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

The City of Spokane is seeking entries for the 2017 Mayor’s Urban Design Awards, which will be presented this fall.


This year marks the 10th anniversary of the awards, which celebrate people who are building the City of Choice. These biennial awards highlight the importance of creative thought, technical proficiency, and the relationship of good urban design to our city’s economic health and overall well-being. They also highlight the best of Spokane’s urban design projects that significantly improve Spokane’s public realm and help implement the City’s Comprehensive Plan. 


“Good design is building and defining our city in a way that really accentuates our urban advantages,” Mayor David Condon said. “Beautiful architecture, historical buildings, plazas, parks, and landscapes have helped our city develop its sense of identity and place, and the Urban Design Awards are a way for us to celebrate those who create those special spaces.”


These awards are intended to build citywide awareness of and discussion about how good design, as part of thoughtful city planning, makes Spokane a more functional, beautiful and inspiring city to live in.


What is “urban design” and what is the “public realm?” 

There are various definitions, but for the purpose of these awards, the following definitions shed some light on the terms.


The public realm is the space to which the public has right of access and the setting for street life.


Urban design is the thoughtful development of spaces that are the setting for street life and activities.  It draws together the many components required for functionality, place making, and sustainability to form places with distinct beauty and identity.



The City’s Design Review Board evaluates submissions and provides recommendations to the Mayor’s Office.


“The Design Review Board strives to elevate the design of projects we review to achieve the vision of the Comprehensive Plan and the various design guidelines, and the Design Awards are an opportunity for the Board to evaluate and celebrate the best projects, regardless of whether they come before the board or not,” Design Review Board Chair Austin Dickey said. 


Citizens can vote for their favorite urban design project. Information about “Qualities of Good Urban Design” is available online. All entries will be displayed on the awards web page and at River Park Square for three weeks, where citizens will be able to vote for their favorite submitted design.


Application Deadline

The call for entries is open through August 1 at 12 pm with awards presented in late September or early October.


For More Info

Visit the awards web page to download submittal documents, view all of the past awards recipients and to learn more about the qualities that contribute to good urban design.