Posts Tagged ‘Pui Tak Center’

Pipal and the Peterson Prize

August 26, 2009

Charlie Pipal has taught our Physical Documentation class since the onset of the millenium, and during that time his students have won six Charles E. Peterson prizes in the NATIONAL competition for the best HABS measured drawings. Charlie never takes the credit and always gives it to the students. He is right, but HIS students have done this six times in eight tries, so I would suspect he has something to do with it.

Last year I wrote a blog calling Charlie the Michael Phelps of preservation because his students’ drawings took home not only the fourth Honorable Mention for a set of HABS drawings, but a Third Place!
But now they have really done it: Kudos to Carol Adams, Ginny Way, Mitch Brown, Frank Butterfield, Ceylan Celebiler, Tianyi Jiang, Pam Pietrowsky, Susannah Ribstein, Kathleen Shanley, Noel Weidner, Christine Whims and Teaching Asistant Emily Spreng of Charlie Pipal’s Physical Documentation class because they won FIRST PRIZE this year!
on leong drawingS
These are the drawings of the 1924 On Leong Merchants Association Building (now Pui Tak Center) in Chinatown, Chicago. Stunning work by all. I am so proud.

The prestigious Peterson Prize is awarded annually by the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) of the National
Park Service, The Athenaeum of Philadelphia and The American Institute of Architects (AIA), and recognizes the best
sets of measured drawings prepared to HABS standards and donated to HABS by students. The drawings will be added to the permanent HABS collection at The Library of Congress.

This is the third Peterson Prize in two years awarded to projects from the SAIC Historic Preservation Program. The previous two were awarded in 2008: a Third Place for drawings of the Pullman Greenstone Church, Chicago; and an Honorable Mention for drawings of the Chicago Athletic Association Building. Drawings from the class also received Honorable Mentions in 2000 (Quinn Chapel), 2005 (Thalia Hall) and 2007 (First Congregational Church, Western Springs). Charlie Pipal taught all of the courses. Don’t tell me he doesn’t have it goin’ on.

Congrats to all!

Vikings Win

October 12, 2007



on leong merch

Originally uploaded by vincusses.

Well, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and American Express web contest to restore Chicago area landmarks is over and the Vikings ran away with it. Actually, the runaway rabbit winner was the Pui Tak Center in Chinatown, built in 1924 as the On Leong Merchants Association, which led the voting by a wide margin from Day One of the contest. Naturally, as a prominent Sinophile, I am well pleased with the outcome. So why did I say the Vikings won? Because the Viking Ship managed to finish second, fending off a strong challenge from Von Steuben High School? No, because Vikings finished first and second if you count the architects of On Leong: Michaelsen and Rognstad.

Von Steuben held on to third and Unity Temple – one of the most architecturally significant buildings IN THE WORLD – managed fourth. Tailed by Robie House throughout the voting, the Peabody Estate Mayslake in Oak Brook made a stretch run to finish fith, pushing Robie into sixth and Louis Sullivan’s Holy Trinity Orthodox Cathedral into seventh. A big surprise was the late surge by the Spring Grove Fish Hatchery (?) which apparently benefitted from the advocacy of Rep. Melissa Bean. By the end of this thing it was taking 2000 votes to get a single percentage point, so even the herculean efforts of SAICers to get out the vote for the Roger Brown Studio could only serve to keep it in the top 15.

Well, l I am off to Racine to the Barry Byrne church there for part of the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy Conference. So much to do….


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