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Architect Scott Merrill | Driehaus Prize

The Driehaus Prize

A Driehaus Prize winner is a designer whose versatility and critical spirit helped reshape American architecture.

Classical architecture and traditional urbanism represent a culture’s highest aspirations. Today the timeless ideals that have endured for centuries have become even more essential as a means to preserve our contemporary way of life. “Beauty, harmony and context are hallmarks of classical architecture, thus fostering communities, enhancing the quality of our shared environment and developing sustainable solutions through traditional materials,” says Richard H. Driehaus, the Chicago philanthropist who has established the Richard H. Driehaus Prize for Classical Architecture to honor a major contributor to the field.

Established in 2003 through the University of Notre Dame School of Architecture, the Richard H. Driehaus Prize honors lifetime contributions to traditional, classical, and sustainable architecture and urbanism in the modern world.

Recipients are selected by a jury comprised of Adele Chatfield-Taylor (President of the American Academy in Rome), Robert Davis (developer and founder of Seaside, Florida), Paul Goldberger (Pulitzer-Prize winning architecture critic and writer for Vanity Fair), Léon Krier (inaugural Driehaus Prize Laureate), Demetri Porphyrios (architect, author and 2004 Driehaus Prize Laureate), and Witold Rybczynski (Meyerson Professor Emeritus of Urbanism at the University of Pennsylvania).

Past winners include Léon Krier, Demetri Porphyrios, Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk and Andrés Duany, and Abdel-Wahed El-Wakil. As Richard H. Driehaus says: “Within the bodies of work of the Driehaus Prize winners, these ideas form an even larger and more important truth about the human experience – that the growth of a culture or community does not need to happen at the expense of its history and established value.”

Visit WTTW’s websites for recent winners of the Driehaus Prize:
2011 Driehaus Prize winner was Architect Robert A.M. Stern
2012 Driehaus Prize winner was Architect Michael Graves
2013 Driehaus Prize winner was Architect Thomas H. Beeby
2014 Driehaus Prize winner was Architect Pier Carlo Bontempi
2015 Driehaus Prize winner was Architect David M. Schwarz