July 6, 2013 UT New Norris House Named Among Nation’s Top 10 Green Projects of 2013

The New Norris House, a project of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is one of the nation’s top 10 examples of sustainable architecture and green design, according to the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and its Committee on the Environment (COTE).

The AIA COTE Top Ten Green Projects Awards is one of the profession’s best-known recognition programs for sustainable design excellence. The program honored a range of architectural types, including government projects, education buildings, office spaces, community projects and housing.

The New Norris House is the only university project selected for the award. Along with fellow award recipients, including renowned architecture firms such as Brooks + Scarpa and KieranTimberlake, the New Norris House will be feted at the AIA 2013 National Convention and Design Exposition in Denver this June.

The house was developed by UT students in conjunction with architecture faculty members Tricia Stuth, Robert French, Samuel Mortimer and Richard Kelso. The building is one of the first in Tennessee to earn the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Homes platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.

The project was led by the UT College of Architecture and Design in partnership with the UT Institute for a Secure and Sustainable Environment, the College of Engineering and the Department of Environmental Studies. It took more than three years to complete.

The award’s jury lauded the home for its affordability and prefabrication approach—made possible through a university partnership with Clayton Homes—and its historical reference to the town of Norris, a planned community under the U.S. New Deal program.

It is “one of the few projects that really looked at the manufacturing process holistically and how a residence could be delivered on site in a really economical way and in a way that conserved energy,” the jury wrote.

The New Norris House has received other recognitions, including a 2013 Design Build Award from the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture, a 2012 Residential Architect Merit Award for Single-Family Housing and the 2011 Prize for Creative Integration of Practice and Education from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board. It also won the 2009 Environmental Protection Agency’s People, Prosperity and the Planet Sustainable Design Competition.

To learn more about the New Norris House, visit

To learn more about the Top Ten AIA COTE Green Projects Awards and to see other winning projects, visit


Ken McCown

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ArchDaily: “AIA Selects the 2013 COTE Top Ten Green Projects.”

Archinect: “AIA Selects 2013 COTE Top Ten Green Projects”

ARCHITECT: “2013 COTE Top Ten: New Norris House”

ARCHITECT: “Projects You Should Know: The 2013 AIA COTE Top Ten Green Projects”

Architectural Record: “AIA/COTE Announces 2013 Top Ten Green Projects”

De Zeen Magazine: “AIA Names Top Ten Green Projects of 2013.”

EcoBuilding Pulse: “Projects You Should Know: The 2013 AIA COTE Top Ten Green Projects”

Fast Company: “The Top 10 Green Building Projects Of 2013”

Gizmodo: “The Systems that Power the Year’s Most Sustainable Buildings.”

Green Source: The Magazine of Sustainable Design: “AIA/COTE Announces 2013 Top Ten Green Projects”

Knoxville News Sentinel (featured cover story): “New Norris House: Energy, efficiency, with warmth and charm.”

Metropulse: “UT’s College of Architecture and Design Recognized for ‘Green’ House”

Scientific American: “Top 10 Green Buildings Improve Surrounding Environment and Users’ Health”

Treehugger: “Five of the Ten greenest buildings of 2013 chosen by the American Institute of Architects.”

US Building Digest: “AIA Selects 2013 COTE Top 10 Green Projects.”

Wired: “Vintage Breweries, Salvaged Wood: This Year’s ‘Greenest’ Buildings Are Surprisingly Hip”


Kiki Roeder (865-974-6713,

Originally published April 23, 2013.