Innovation: The Hallmark of Excellence

DAVID T. DOWNEY, CAE, ASSOC. AIA, PRESIDENT & CEO, IDA

We continue to draw inspiration from this year’s Annual Conference & Marketplace, sharing ideas, solutions, challenges and the meaningful work we do every day. And a great example of the tremendous work you’ve produced over the last year is evident in the Innovative Projects showcased in this year’s awards. We had a record-setting amount of award submissions in 2021, and today, IDA recognized 36 award-winning projects during the Downtown Achievement Awards ceremony in Tampa, Florida.

These award-winning projects highlight IDA members’ flexibility, creativity, and ability to address the gaps and challenges from the past year. Momentum is being gained while rewriting the playbook, leaning into technology, and rebuilding our cities. Winning projects showcased plans to build resilient downtowns and city centers; designs for plazas and parks to serve the next generation; events to revitalize districts; grants to spur economic growth; and more.

Congratulations to the 2021 Downtown Achievement Award winners! Visit IDA’s Innovative Projects webpage to gain ideas and inspiration for your district. The Knowledge Center is also loaded with 33 new best practices and 29 Excellence award-winning projects, including collateral to help you replicate these concepts in your city. Start thinking about your own work and prepare to submit next year to contribute to this growing body of knowledge.

Downtown Memphis Commission’s recent IDA Awards:

2021
BuildDowntown – Downtown Memphis Master Plan – Award of Excellence
South City Good Neighbor Grant – Award of Excellence
Downtown Memphis Parking Study – Best Practice

2020
Open on Main – Pinnacle Award Winner
Downtown Memphis Big Birthday Bash – Best Practice
Central Bark Dog Park – Best Practice