Polk County Courthouse Wins 2023 AEI Award

Interior image of a courtroom in the historic Polk County Courthouse in Des Moines, Iowa

OMAHA, NE — Alvine Engineering is proud to announce that our work on the Historic Polk County Courthouse has received the Architectural Engineering Institute’s (AEI) Professional Project Award of Merit in the Renovation category. Alvine Engineering submitted the interior portion of the project to AEI under the Integration and Renovation discipline in the “Under 100-Million-Dollar” project category.

The AEI Professional Project Award focuses on the design and construction of high-performance buildings across multiple architectural engineering disciplines such as structural, mechanical, and electrical systems as well as construction management and technology integration. The renovation category is unique as it is a multi-disciplinary award that measures the success of new system integration within a historic structure that improves overall tenant experience, energy efficiency, and longevity of use. The project submission, the Polk County Courthouse, is a civil court located in downtown Des Moines, Iowa. The building was constructed in 1906 and had undergone its latest renovation featuring Alvine Engineering in 2016 and completed construction on August 30, 2022.

Alvine Engineering’s award-winning design approach to the Polk County Courthouse involved the creative use of long-forgotten chassis spaces for the vertical integration of new mechanical, plumbing, and electrical systems. Extensive collaboration with the onsite contractor allowed the design team to formulate paths throughout these spaces as well as install new fiber optic network cabling with new flooring installation. One main challenge that presented itself throughout multiple aspects of the project was adhering to the Owner’s strict design standards and maintaining as much of the original, historical fabric as possible.

“Managing this project was a unique challenge that required a lot of hard work and creative solutions from our team,” Jason Jones stated. Jason is a Project Manager with Alvine Engineering and led the mechanical portion of the Polk County project. “Going off of limited specs and info and being able to produce the result was nothing short of a great success for our team, client, and the contractors we worked with.”

Alvine Engineering has now won an award from AEI’s Professional Project competition for its sixth consecutive year. Our unique approach to sound-dampening and quiet mechanical systems for the Michael and Anne Greenwood School of Music won the Award of Merit in the “Mechanical Systems Design” category in 2022.

Previous Project Winners:

2021 – Most Innovative Project Award (Over 100-Million-Dollars) – Thomas F. Farrell II Building
2020 – Award of Excellence in Lighting Systems Design – 1201 Cass Street
2019 – Best Overall Project (Over 100-Million Dollars) – Northwestern Mutual Tower and Commons
2018 – Best Overall Project (Over 100-Million Dollars) – River Point

Alvine and Associates, Inc. is a family-owned company with two generations of expertise in fire protection engineering, architectural lighting design, building commissioning services, technology systems design, and life support systems engineering. What started out as a small, family business in 1961 now spans six office locations with over 200 employees across the United States working under two, unique subsidiaries armed with six decades of experience: Alvine Engineering and IP Design Group. Our work is based on the philosophy that engineering innovation is achieved through equal parts art, science, and business.

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