Awards / News

Grand Opening of Chuck Austin Place

November 2021

SMR attended the grand opening celebration of Yakima Housing Authority’s Chuck Austin Place on November 10, 2021. Responding to the need for creating safe homes for veterans experiencing homelessness, Yakima Housing Authority developed Chuck Austin Place to provide 14 units of permanent supportive housing and 27 units for homeless singles and families on the site of the former Marine Corp Armory in Yakima. The recently completed campus includes the renovated armory, which was repurposed into 14 studio units and 12,000 SF of supportive services space, and five new apartment buildings which include 17 one-bedroom units and 10 two-bedroom units constructed adjacent to the armory. More information on the grand opening is available here.


Arlington Drive Youth Campus Recognized with ULI’s Jack Kemp Chairman’s Award

October 2021

Tacoma Housing Authority’s Arlington Drive Youth Campus was recognized with a Chairman’s Award in the Urban land Institute’s 2021 Jack Kemp Excellence in Affordable and Workforce Housing Awards. The Jack Kemp Awards honor exemplary developments that ensure housing affordable for people with a range of incomes and specifically recognize efforts by the development community to increase the supply of homes affordable to households earning less than 120 percent of the area median income (AMI). Arlington Drive Youth Campus received the Chairman’s Award, a recognition bestowed on an especially creative project designed to addres a unique affordable housing challeng. Serving as a regional asset for young people in crisis throughout the Puget Sound area, the Arlington Drive Youth Campus is a strong model of how housing can be combined with supportive services at a large scale. Watch the full awards presentation video here.


Dorothy Height Apartments Receieves AIA WA Civic Design Awards’ Honorable Mention

September 2021

YWCA Pierce County’s Dorothy Height Apartments was recognized with an honorable mention for program resultion during the AIA Washington Council’s Civic Design Awards on Seoptember 9th. The Civic Design Awards celebrate design excellence in publicly funded projects in Washington State. During the ceremony, the jury remarked, “This project adds value not only to the residents, but to the greater community as a whole.” In response to the current housing crisis and to create a full continuum of servces that meet its mission, the YWCA Pierce County developed the Dorothy Height Apartments, a new building with 54 units of affordable housing (and one resident manager unit) constructed on an existing parking lot. Wactch the full awards presentation here.


THA’s Arlington Drive Youth Campus Selected as a Finalist for Two Awards

August 2021

Tacoma Housing Authority’s Arlington Drive Youth Campus has been selected as a finalist for Affordable Housing Finance Magazine’s 2021 Readers’ Choice Award and the Urban Land Institute’s Jack Kemp Excellence in Affordable and Workforce Housing Awards. Designed by SMR Architects, the Arlington Drive Youth Campus for homeless youth and young adults gives young people a second chance at life and consists of a Crisis Residential Center for youth and a 58-unit apartment complex for young adults. The development is a strong model of how housing can be combined with supportive services at a large scale and serves as a regional asset for people in crisis throughout the Puget Sound area.

The Arlington Drive Youth Campus was named a finalist in Affordable Housing Finance Magazine (AHF)’s 2021 Readers’ Choice Awards in the special-needs category. This year’s competition began with over 120 nominations which were narrowed down to 36 inspiring developments based on their innovation, impact, and creative problem-solving. The winners will be announced at AHF Live: The 2021 Affordable Housing Developers Summit in Chicago in November.

The development also was selected as one of 16 finalists for the Urban Land Institute (ULI)’s Jack Kemp Excellence in Affordable and Workforce Housing Award. The awards program honors exemplary developments that ensure housing affordability for people with a range of incomes and recognizes efforts by the development community to increase the supply of housing affordable to households earning less than 120 percent of the area median income (AMI). The winners will be announced in October.


Two SMR Projects Receive Gold Nugget Awards

June 2021

Judges for the 2021 Gold Nugget Awards have named SMR Architects as a Grand Award winner and Award of Merit recipient in its annual competition, which honors architectural design and planning excellence and draws entries from throughout the United States and Internationally.

Tacoma Housing Authority’s Arlington Drive Youth Campus was selected as a Grand Award winner and Pioneer Human Services’ Aspen Terrace was recognized as an Award of Merit recipient, both in the Best Supportive / Transitional Housing category. Now in its 59th year, the Gold Nugget Awards is the largest and most prestigious competition of its kind in the nation. Winners this year were chosen from over 600 entries from around the world.


Tonkin Architecture is Joining SMR

AAPIMay 2021

We are delighted to announce that SMR Architects is acquiring Tonkin Architecture!

The combined Seattle-based firm of 39 employees will continue to be named SMR Architects. We’re already beginning the process of integrating Tonkin into SMR and plan to complete the process by the end of 2021. We fully expect this acquisition to result in expanded opportunities for our client and project partners as additional resources and expertise can be brought to each project. Our commitment to providing project quality and continuity is paramount as Tonkin joins SMR Architects.

Read more about the acquisition here.


Statement Against Anti-Asian Racism

AAPIMarch 2021

SMR Architects condemns anti-Asian discrimination. We stand in solidarity with the Asian American Pacific Islander community suffering from a disturbing rise in anti-Asian violence and hate crimes.

We invite you to join us in supporting anti-hate organizations locally and nationally. SMR has made donations to Asian Counseling and Referral Service (ACRS) and Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, just two of many outstanding groups working tirelessly to support AAPI communities in our region.

For a list of organizations to support or to find ways to help fight anti-Asian violence, please view the resources below.

      National Resources:

      Local/State Resources:


Plymouth on First Hill Honored with 2020 AIA/HUD Secretary’s Housing Accessibility – Alan J. Rothman Award

Plymouth on First HillSeptember 2020

SMR Architects is honored to announce that Plymouth Housing’s Plymouth on First Hill was selected as the recipient of the 2020 AIA/HUD Secretary’s Housing Accessibility – Alan J. Rothman Award. The award recognizes a project involving housing that demonstrates excellence in improving accessibility for people with ability constraints. Built in 2017, Plymouth on First Hill is Plymouth Housing’s 14th building and provides 77 studio units for formerly homeless people and three studio units for live-in staff (80 units total). Plymouth on First Hill transforms the lives of its residents by providing accessible housing, healthcare, and supportive services for some of Seattle’s most vulnerable residents. The development is a model building for combining housing for formerly homeless individuals and providing access to healthcare and supportive services.


Clement Place Receives Gold Nugget Award

Clement PlaceJuly 2020

Judges for the 2020 Gold Nugget Awards have named SMR Architects as an Award of Merit recipient in its annual competition, which honors architectural design and planning excellence and draws entries from throughout the United States and Internationally. DESC’s Clement Place was selected as a winner in the Best Supportive / Transitional Housing category. Chosen from the Merit Award winners, Grand Awards will be announced on July 24th. Now in its 57th year, the Gold Nugget Awards is the largest and most prestigious competition of its kind in the nation. Winners this year were chosen from over 600 entries from around the world. Click Here to Read More 


SMR’s Emily Darling Graduates from HDC’s Leadership Course

HDC LDC

June 2020

SMR’s Emily Darling graduated from the 2020 Class of the Leadership Development Survey Course, a six-month program hosted by Housing Development Consortium (HDC). The course is part of HDC’s Leadership Development Initiative which offers emerging leaders, in the affordable housing field, the tools they need to access both technical and professional management skills to understand the importance of leveraging partnerships across various sectors. Connecting participants with current and upcoming leaders in the field of affodable housing, the course provides participants with a broad overview of leadership principles and exposure to the many and varied roles of leaders in mission and value-driven organizations. Click Here to Read More 


Closed in Support of Black Lives Matter

BLM

June 12, 2020

SMR will be closed on Friday, June 12th, in solidarity with Black Lives Matter Seattle-King County. We stand together in seeking an end to racism, police brutality, and the many other inequities that plague our nation.

Tomorrow, we will join other affordable housing organizations and Washington businesses in a collective presence for this strike. We encourage our employees to participate in the statewide day of action in support of Black lives either by participating in the march or through personal reflection at home.


Employees Participate in Count Us In

Count Us In 2019January 2020
King County Point In Time Count

SMR Architects participated again this year in the Point In Time Count for King County. The count, which took place in the early hours of Friday, January 24th, is an annual effort to collect data on people currently living unsheltered in our community. Click Here to Read More 


El Centro de la Raza’s Plaza Roberto Maestas Receives ULI’s Jack Kemp Award

September 2019

Plaza Roberto Maestas was honored as one of only three recipients of the Urban Land Institute’s prestigious Jack Kemp Excellence in Affordable and Workforce Housing Awards. The awards competition began in 2008 and recognizes exemplary developments that meet affordable and workforce housing needs and help to create mixed-income communities of opportunity. Winners were announced during ULI’s Fall Meeting on September 19, 2019. Plaza Roberto Maestas is a landmark equitable transit-oriented development project in Seattle’s Beacon Hill neighborhood that transformed a surfacing parking lot into a multicultural hub for the neighborhood. Click Here to Read More | Photo is courtesy of William Wright Photography.


Imagine Housing’s 30Bellevue Receives VISION 2040 Award

September 2019

The Puget Sound Regional Council recognized 30Bellevue with a VISION 2040 Award on September 16, 2019. SMR was honored to partner with Imagine Housing and St. Luke’s Lutheran Church on this 63-unit affordable housing development for families, including students, seniors, and veterans. 30Bellevue serves as a shining new example for future, comprehensive partnerships between organizations to provide affordable housing and aid to low-income individuals and families in an equitable, sustainable, and healthy environment. The VISION 2040 Awards recognize innovative projects and programs that help ensure a sustainable future as the Puget Sound region grows. Click Here to Read More


SMR Promotes Five to Associate

July 2019

SMR Architects Architects is proud to announce the promotion of David Albers, Michael Davis, Megan Espinoza, Demian Minjarez, and John Putre to the position of Associate. The Associates’ new responsibilities include leading project teams and contributing to SMR’s strategic planning. These employees embody the values and culture of the firm and have helped to cultivate an environment in which other professionals can grow.

David joined SMR in 2012 and focuses his practice on affordable and market rate multi-family developments. He offers a passion for creating buildings that meet client needs while enhancing the lives of the residents. Michael joined SMR in 2015 and has worked with a number of affordable housing providers on various new construction and rehabilitation projects. He is committed to creating possibilities for people of all backgrounds. Megan’s belief in accessible housing to all and her desire to support a community-focused vision led her to SMR in 2012. Since that time, she has led many award-winning affordable and supportive housing developments. Demian credits his deep dedication to affordable housing and advocacy to his family, who show a commitment to social work. He joined the firm in 2011 and has experience with family, supportive, senior, and farmworker housing projects. With a passion for socially conscious design, John joined SMR in 2012 and focuses his practice on providing architectural services that promote the client’s core mission through efficient, thoughtfully executed spaces. Click Here to Read More


SMR Architects Promotes Three to Associate Principal

July 2019

SMR Architects is proud to announce the promotion of Andrew Phillips, Kate Smith, and Rumi Takahashi to the position of Associate Principal. All three individuals have contributed to SMR’s growth while displaying exemplary leadership and professional skills.

Andrew joined SMR in 1996 and specializes in renovation, historic preservation, and adaptive reuse projects. Since starting with the firm in 2006, Kate has designed diverse permanent supportive and affordable housing projects. Rumi joined SMR in 2014, designing housing and community-based buildings that provide places of dignity and inclusion for our community’s most vulnerable members.

Each Associate Principal brings a unique perspective and background to SMR’s commitment to creating a better world through its work, and they participate in various advocacy activities for the advancement of affordable housing, preservation, social equity, and efforts to end homelessness. Click Here to Read More


Grand Opening of Imagine Housing’s 30Bellevue

June 2019

SMR celebrated the grand opening of Imagine Housing’s 30Bellevue on June 4, 2019. 30Bellevue provides 63 affordable homes for families, seniors, and veterans on an existing surface parking lot behind St. Luke’s Lutheran Church in the North Towne neighborhood of Bellevue. The development has four residential floors with a parking garage and two community rooms. Click Here to Read More


The Cambridge Apartments Project Receives ABC of Western Washington’s Excellence in Construction Awards

May 2019

The rehabilitation of the Cambridge Apartments was recognized in this year’s ABC of Western Washington’s Excellence in Construction. The project won the category of Historic Renovation ($10 – $25 million) and also won the Eagle of Excellence Award which honors the overall best project submitted. SMR enjoyed working with Bellwether Housing and Rafn Company on this complex rehabilitation project. Click Here to Read More | Photo is courtesy of William Wright Photography.


SMR Project Receives Judges Special Award of Excellence from the Gold Nugget Awards 

Gold Nugget

May 2019

Judges for the 2019 Gold Nugget Awards have named SMR Architects as a Judges Special Award of Excellence recipient for the design of Cosecha Court II in Granger, WA. The annual competition honors architectural design and planning excellence and draws entries from throughout the United States and internationally. 

Cosecha Court II is a seasonal farmworker development owned and operated by the Yakima Housing Authority with the Office of Rural and Farmworker Housing assisting with the project development.

Chosen from the Merit Award winners, Grand Awards for each category will be announced on May 31st. Now in its 56th year, the Gold Nugget Awards is the largest and most prestigious competition of its kind in the nation. Winners this year were chosen from over 600 entries from around the world. Click Here to Read More


Grand Opening of DESC’s Clement Place

April 2019

SMR celebrated the grand opening of DESC’s Clement Place on April 9, 2019. Located in the Aurora-Licton Springs neighborhood, Clement Place creates safe, permanent homes and a support system for individuals experiencing homelessness and employs the Housing First model. The six-story building has 100 studio units above an inviting, open courtyard, with offices, meeting rooms, and a bike storage area on the first level. Click Here to Read More