The Plimpton-Poorvu Design Prize was established with a gift by long-term friends, business partners, and GSD advocates Samuel Plimpton (MBA '77, MArch '80) and William J. Poorvu (MBA '58). The first prize award of approximately $20,000 and a second prize award of $10,000 recognizes the two top teams or individuals for a viable real estate project completed as part of the GSD curricula that best demonstrates feasibility in design, construction, economics, and in fulfillment of market and user needs.

The Plimpton-Poorvu Design Prize is open to all masters-level students enrolled at the GSD regardless of their seniority or degree program and aims to encourage collaborative, cross-disciplinary work. A review committee composed of faculty members from each department selects a shortlist of candidates each spring to participate in a review and submit a revised application. The faculty review committee, Chairs, and Dean review the revised submissions and select the winner(s) in May.


The 2019 Prize winners and faculty advisors with William J. Poorvu (MBA '58) (second from the left), Samuel Plimpton (MBA '77, MArch '80) (left), and Dean Mostafavi (fourth from the right), during a reception in Stubbins.
The 2019 Prize winners and faculty advisors with William J. Poorvu (MBA '58) (second from the left), Samuel Plimpton (MBA '77, MArch '80) (left), and Dean Mostafavi (fourth from the right), during a reception in Stubbins.

The 2019 first prize has been awarded to Sam Adkisson (MAUD ’19) and Hiroki Kawashima (MAUD ’19). Their proposal, Metro Strand: Renewed Vitality for Overtown in an Urbanizing Miami, builds on the work they began in the “Multiple Miamis” studio taught by Chris Reed and Sean Canty in fall 2018. The project proposes a smarter way for Miami’s continued urbanization, with the added complexity of climate change, to establish a better method for future inner-city growth for the impoverished community of Overtown.

Second prize has been awarded to Augustinas Indrasius (MDes ’19), Peteris Lazovskis (MArch ’20), and Thomas Schaperkotter (March ’20). Their proposal, Carbon Park, LA, builds upon the work they begin in the 2018 Fourth Semester Architecture Core Studio “Relate.” The project reimagines how real estate investment may fuel social benefit and ecological sustainability by connecting private investment with public space to seek balance for investors, the downtown Los Angeles community, and California's growing carbon economy.

Past Recipients


First prize Georgios Avramides (MDes ’18), Duly Lee (MDes ’18), John Lee (MDes ’18), Emily Marsh (MUP ’18), and Alex Rawding (MUP ’18). Their master plan proposal, Port District Interbay: Seattle, aims to address Seattle’s social challenges through improved transportation systems and is designed to be an economic hub that links residential, office, retail, hotel, public space and trails, and connections to the surrounding community.

Second prize Dalia Alderzi (MDes ’19), Alaa Raafat (MDes ’18), and Carlotta Weller (MDes ’19). Their proposal, Glories Olivetti | Barcelona, Spain, revives the legacy of Olivetti, integrates with the existing 22@ innovation district, and becomes the gateway for two communities: El Clot and 22@ innovation district in Barcelona, Spain.


First prize Patricia Alvarez (MDes ’18), Lisa Hollywood (MAUD ’17), Chris Merritt (MLA II ‘ 17), and Lindsay Woodson (MDes & MUP ’17). Their submission, NoBe Nexo, re-envisions an 18-acre site in North Beach, Miami Beach as a mixed-use development that addresses sea-level rise, storm surge, and food insecurity issues.

Second prize Maxime Faure (MAUD ’18), Van-Tuong Nguyen (MDes ’18), and Carla Wijaya (MAUD ’18). Their proposal, The W, is for a mixed-use housing development on Boston’s North End waterfront that includes housing for students, young professionals, and single householders, and provides a publicly accessible landscape connection along the waterfront.


Anna Hermann (MArch ’17) and Felipe Oropeza, Jr. (MArch ’17). Their submission, Hotel Alexandra: Conservation and Redevelopment project, completed for the class “Fieldwork in Conservation Design” demonstrates a successful integration of design, feasibility, and implementation strategy.