Roth Sheppard and Humphries Poli Receive Top Design Award

Montezuma County Courthouse Recognized by the American Institute of Architects, Colorado Chapter


Denver, Colo. (Sept. 7, 2019) – The American Institute of Architects (AIA), Colorado presented Roth Sheppard Architects and Humphries Poli Architecture with a 2018 “Notable in Denver” Award for The Montezuma County Courthouse during the 2018 AIA Colorado Awards Gala on Friday, Sept. 7, 2017 in Denver, Colo. A total of 21 project received Design Awards this year to deserving members of the Colorado architecture community each recognizing build, materials, aesthetics, space and design.

 At this year’s annual AIA Colorado - Denver Awards Gala, Dennis Humphries, Jeff Sheppard and Herb Roth accepted the award. The project centralizes court functions for the County and includes a design that was derived from Pueblo structures recessed in the nearby Mesa Verde cliffs.

 Completed in July of 2017, the project is a newly constructed, 33,000 sq. ft. building with a linear public corridor and an opposing linear staff corridor frame the interior providing for a clear articulation between secure and non-secure spaces.  A Kiva element near the main public entry defines the entry plaza and functions as a public community room when not in use as a jury assembly room.

 “Slot windows within the Kiva element are placed to frame views of the significant mountain peaks from the center point of the Kiva,” said Sheppard, a partner at Roth Sheppard.  “The ceiling inside the kiva includes an array of LED can lights that recall the Orion constellation, which was significant to the Pueblo people.”

 The material palette, fenestration, building orientation, shaded walkways and on-site water collection and natural filtration systems respond to the harsh climatic conditions in this arid region where exterior temperatures can exceed 100 Degrees in the summer and dip well below freezing in the winter.

 “The overall wedge-like form of the main building is symbolic of the overhanging crevice in the Mesa Verde mountainside while also referencing the simple shed-like structures found within this agricultural community,” said Jeff Sheppard, who led the design of the project.

 “Montezuma County Combined Courthouse was well-deserving of a 2018 design award. The design awards jury was especially impressed with the kiva element as the building’s entrance,” said Cathy Rosset, executive vice president & CEO of AIA Colorado.

 The 2018 AIA Colorado Design Awards Jury was comprised of five individuals: Roderick Ashley, FAIA, Founding Principal of Roderick Ashley Architects; Heidi Beebe, AIA LEED AP, Founding Partner of Beebe Skidmore Architects; Amy Donahue, AIA, Principal at Bora Architects; David Keltner, AIA, LEED AP, Principal at Hacker Architects; Miles Woofter, AIA, LEED AP, Principal at Woofter Architecture.



About Roth Sheppard Architects

Founded in 1983, Denver-based Roth Sheppard Architects is nationally recognized for its elegant, yet functional public safety architecture and highly innovative restaurant, retail and entertainment spaces. With more than 105 awards from the AIA, ASID, IIDA and other design associations, over the past 35 years Roth Sheppard has contributed to the planning and design of more than 60 law enforcement facilities, as well as 80 restaurants and high-end retail stores. In 2010 Roth Sheppard won the prestigious AIA Architecture Firm of the Year awards for both Denver and the State of Colorado, acknowledging the firms leadership role in design, mentoring, teaching and professional practice.

About Humphries Poli Architects

Humphries Poli Architects (HPA) is a professional corporation founded in 1994 with a commitment to leadership in architectural design excellence. Expertise in architecture, urban design, interiors, and preservation complements a balanced project approach and results in fresh and thoughtful solutions. The firm is directed by principals Joseph J. Poli, AIA and Dennis Humphries, AIA. Perhaps most notable among these achievements is the AIA Western Mountain Region Firm of the Year Award. This distinction follows our past selection as AIA Colorado Firm of the Year and the AIA Denver Firm of the Year. These acknowledgments are among nearly 60 awards we have received for our leadership and work now in our 23rd year of practice.

About AIA Colorado

AIA Colorado is the voice of the architecture profession in Colorado. Through advocacy, leadership development, education and resources for architects, the organization is supporting architecture professionals in designing a better world. Our statewide network of nearly 2,500 members includes architects, those working towards licensure and allied industry professionals.