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St. Pete Names 3 Finalists For New Pier Design

As the City of St. Petersburg progresses on an international design competition to replace the Pier, a jury of five panelists has winnowed the finalists from 23 teams to the final three.

After advertising the international design competition, the City received applications from 23 international teams with interest in competing for the opportunity to design the new $50 million Pier project. On June 29, the team narrowed the list to nine, ultimately choosing the final three design teams: Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), Michael Maltzan Architecture and West 8 with Allied Works Architecture.

Among those chosen, Michael Maltzan Architecture, a Los Angeles-based architecture firm, decided to team up with St. Pete 's own Wannemacher Jensen Architects (WJ Architects), establishing a local presence for the high-profile competition.

“Michael Maltzan Architecture has received international acclaim and prominence that will ensure an iconic design with international appeal and innovation,” says Jason Jensen of WJ Architects. “We have strong roots in the area, contributing to local, wishes and constraints while ensuring that the residents of St. Pete have a voice in our team's design. Together, we will provide an international design tailored to fit the St. Peterburg area's environment and lifestyle.”

Having worked on more than 200 projects for the City of St. Pete, including award-winning designs such as the North Shore Pool, Roberts Recreation Center and Walter Fuller Park, WJ Architects projects include Tropicana Field improvements and the interior design of the Progress Energy headquarters.

“We believe that we have a very collaborative team who is sensitive to local needs by taking the time to listen and getting to know the community and local environment,” says Jensen. “The objective is to work with the community to arrive at a solution that is embraced. Only then do we begin designing a place rich with experiences, a place that will truly make memories.”

Jensen says the design submitted for the competition by Michael Maltzan, himself and partner Lisa Wannemacher is in its beginning stages and will be a basis for additional community outreach. The team will continue to refine the design before submitting to the jury on November 29. Presentations will be made by all three teams on December 15-16 before the jury submits its final recommendation to the City Council in January for approval on February 2, 2012.

For their efforts, each team will receive an honorarium of $50,000 while $5.6 million of the competition's budget will go toward the demolition of the existing Pier.

Writer: Alexis Quinn Chamberlain
Source: Jason Jensen, Wannemacher Jensen Architects
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