PPR Apartments Finalist for Architecture Award

PPR apartments

"The new field, complete with a new back wall and viewing terrace, has become a huge focal point on campus," says Susan Smythe, project manager and ADA coordinator.

Swarthmore’s PPR Apartments is a finalist for the 5th annual Willard G. “Bill” Rouse III Awards for Excellence, which recognize superior development projects in and around Philadelphia.

Modeled after the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Global Awards for Excellence, Rouse awards are given to projects that embody ULI’s mission of pushing the standard of excellence in real estate and land use and creating sustainable and thriving communities.

As Swarthmore’s first building to employ the College’s Environmental Sustainability Framework, ULI notes, PPR Apartments “achieves lofty sustainability benchmarks while providing necessary housing to the growing campus community.”

Susan Smythe, project manager and ADA program coordinator, points to “the incredible synergy that developed between Athletics and the architects in the design of the building” as one of the best elements of the project.

“We were originally nervous about the proposed [location] next to the baseball field, that it would be seen as a big detriment. Instead, it really did turn into an opportunity,” Smythe told ULI Philadelphia. “The new field, complete with a new back wall and viewing terrace, has become a huge focal point on campus, and the team has gone on this season to win their first conference championship ever.”

The 12 finalists for the Rouse awards represent an array of project types: commercial, mixed use open space, institutional, and residential. A national jury of experts comprised of interdisciplinary leaders from around the country chose from a record-breaking number of applications this year and will announce the winners on June 13.