Public Service 2017 Award

A program that recognizes those individuals or groups who have enhanced the built environment, educated the public, or supported the architectural profession. The Public Service Award acknowledges the impact that an individual or group can have on the design process.


Northside Institutions, Neighborhood Alliance, Inc. (NINA)
20-28 Sargent Street, Hartford, Connecticut

NINA is a development corporation established in 2003 in order to revitalize the Asylum Hill neighborhood of Hartford, Connecticut. Its core strategy of targeted reinvestment centers on highly focused areas that are burdened by blight and disinvestment, and it addresses those concerns directly by rehabilitating blighted, historic houses as owner-occupied opportunities for low- to moderate-income families. It works simultaneously with partners among the residents, the community-based organizations, the Hartford Police Department, and our member institutions to design and to implement complementary community development programs that address the problems that blight causes. Its goals are to take control of the environment, to remediate the blight entirely, to change the perception of the block and the neighborhood, and ultimately to restore and to preserve the historic homes of Asylum Hill as places of value for the city.

Jury Comments: The Northside Institutions, Neighborhood Alliance, Inc. (NINA) has been awarded the 2017 AIA Connecticut Public Service for its multi-dimensional skills in rehabilitation, marketing and in figuring out how to finance projects. This is the type of hands on, focused effort to revitalize and otherwise “lost” neighborhood, lost perhaps, because of far- away landlords, that merits recognition. NINA is focused on all aspects of revitalization, including job training, that affect the life of the community. It is successful because it uses local community members who take pride in achievement on behalf of their community.


Honorable Mention

Arnold Karp, Founder, Karp Associates
16 Cross Street, New Canaan, Connecticut

Although his day job involves the construction and development of many residential projects that have been recognized though HOBI awards and the 2012 Alice Washburn Award, it is Arnold Karp’s tireless volunteerism that is impressive. Arnold has profoundly enhanced the built environment through continuous charitable and philanthropic efforts to make an impact on the design process within the community. He has served as a board member to institutions that are short on design and construction expertise but long on community service. He has served as Board President of the Stamford Museum and Nature Center, a 16- year Board member of the New Canaan YMCA, and is a founding member of the Jewish Community Center of New Canaan, helping to push redevelopment of the organization’s projects forward. He has also held active roles as a member of the Town of New Canaan Master Planning Committee and the New Canaan High School Building Committee. He is a supporter of planning for conservation and development, encouraging smart growth in the community, supporting local economies and protecting the environment. As Vice Chair for the Board of Directors of the Mill River Park Collaborative, he has donated his time to involving many architects and landscape architects in reinvigorating the river front.

Jury comments: Arnold Karp has given time, money and personal investment in contributions to iconic projects in the community. Both Mr. Karp and NINA are community minded, the one on a grass roots level, and the other on a philanthropic level.