/ Awards / Pickard Chilton Awarded 2020 AIA Connecticut Sustainable Architecture Award for 609 Main

Pickard Chilton Awarded 2020 AIA Connecticut Sustainable Architecture Award for 609 Main

Parul Dubey on August 18, 2020 - in Awards, News

New Haven Architect Recognized for Sustainable Design of Office Tower in Houston, Texas with Excellence Award in New Construction Category


(New Haven, Conn. ) – Pickard Chilton, an award-winning architecture studio best known for its innovative and cutting-edge design of corporate headquarters and campuses, has received a 2020 AIA Connecticut Sustainable Architecture Award of Excellence in New Construction for 609 Main at Texas, a 48-story, 1,850,000-square-foot Class-A, next-generation office tower in Houston’s Central Business District. Winners will be honored at the AIA Connecticut Awards Gala, a virtual event to be held in November. 

The Sustainable Architecture Awards is a newly established program by AIA Connecticut to recognize the efforts of architects who have developed and demonstrated ways to decrease greenhouse gases, reduce energy use and demand, and conserve water. Equally important is the creation of durable, comfortable and healthy spaces. The award aims to raise public awareness of the current climate crisis and highlight leadership in the construction, maintenance, and operation of the built environment. The Sustainable Architecture Award also honors the climate change initiatives of AIA Connecticut and Connecticut Passive House to secure a more sustainable future.

The 2020 award submissions were reviewed by a jury of professionals that included Melissa Kops AIA, LEED AP BD+C, LFA of Pirie Associates; Bruce Becker FAIA, AICP, LEED AP of Becker + Becker Associates; and, Larry Jones LEED Fellow of Atelier Ten USA. Judges praised the building as “an example of creating sustainable spaces in an urban environment. With initial drivers such as ample daylight, fresh air and biophilic design, the fact that this large high-rise achieved an annual EUI of 31 kBtu/sf is commendable, illustrating that these goals can be achieved at any size.”


609 Main at Texas is considered to be one of the most ambitious LEED-CS Platinum-certified skyscrapers to be developed in downtown Houston. Its design offers tenants greater comfort, efficiency and productivity. The high-performance enclosure maximizes daylight while reducing solar heat gain. A two-story penthouse features an electrochromic glass skylight. The double-height “hotel-style” lobby offers a café, a conference facility, retail space, and a fitness center. Natural stone and wood, stainless steel accents, and interior landscaping attest to the lobby’s quality.

“609 Main incorporates superior technology defining it as a next-generation office tower. Drivers fundamental to its design were greater access to natural light, fresh air, and nature; and, the efficient stewardship of water, energy and materials,” said principal Jon Pickard FAIA. “Innovative design in its enclosure, mechanical systems, energy efficiency and water management, as well as conscientious material selection, allowed 609 Main to achieve its sustainability goals.”

The double-tiered green roof terrace reduces heat island effect, absorbs and filters storm water and captures and stores rain for future use while providing a natural environment for tenants. In the lobby, a 28-foot tall green wall and water feature greet visitors while serving as passive cooling elements. In addition to energy-efficient lighting and harmonic-mitigating transformers, heat sensors adjust room temperature for the number of occupants. Efficient building systems include “smart” elevators and a sophisticated “Dual Path” underfloor HVAC system that allows for individual control and constant air purification.

The building’s tenant roster includes Goldman Sachs, Kirkland & Ellis and United Airlines. 609 Main at Texas was previously recognized with an Out-of-State Award of Merit from the Connecticut Green Building Council and a Green Good Design Award from The Chicago Athenaeum and the European Centre for Architecture.



Pickard Chilton is an international architectural practice noted for its expertise in the design of large, complex and often high-profile buildings including corporate headquarters, high-rise commercial office towers, hotels, and academic and health care facilities. The firm’s layered perspective informs all of its work, presenting clients with a sophisticated, knowledge-based approach that emphasizes design vision, integrity, a focus on client objectives, and exceptional service. Headquartered in New Haven, Conn., the firm’s recent completed projects include: River Point in Chicago; Akamai Technologies’ new global headquarters in Cambridge, Ma.; Northwestern Mutual’s headquarters in Milwaukee; and, Eaton House in Dublin, Ireland. Current projects include 325 Main, Google’s new headquarters in Cambridge, Ma.; the Y2 Project and Global Gateway Shinagawa development, both in Tokyo, Japan; 2+U in Seattle, Wash.; and, Canal Place for Dominion Energy in Richmond, Va. as well as commercial and residential developments in Austin, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Miami, San Francisco, Stuttgart, Germany and Tokyo, Japan. Please visit www.pickardchilton.com for more information.


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