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Mayor Carolyn G. Goodman and Former Mayor Oscar B. Goodman of Las Vegas to Receive National Honor for Leadership in Urban Design

LAS VEGAS, Feb. 27, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Architectural Foundation (AAF) and The United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) announced today that Mayor Carolyn G. Goodman (2011–Present) and Former Mayor Oscar B. Goodman (1999–2011) of Las Vegas will share the fourth annual Joseph P. Riley Jr. Award for Leadership in Urban Design. Mayor and Mr. Goodman will be honored nationally at the 25th annual Accent on Architecture Gala, presented by AAF, on Thursday, April 24, 2014, in Washington, D.C.

U.S. Conference of Mayors

The Riley Award is issued each year to a mayor whose commitment to excellence in urban design has helped elevate the quality of life for that mayor's constituency. The Goodmans are being honored because during their consecutive administrations, they have helped lead Las Vegas into an urban renaissance focused on downtown revitalization.

"The Goodmans have had the foresight and drive to turn the city of Las Vegas into a cultural destination," said USCM CEO & Executive Director Tom Cochran. "They both have had the vision and ability to recognize that arts and culture attract youth, and youth attracts jobs and economic growth."

Of the Goodmans work in Las Vegas, AAF President & CEO Ron Bogle said, "One of the great challenges of successful city design is having consistent, committed civic leadership to support and guide design innovations from concept through implementation. Not only have the Goodmans brought that type of leadership to Las Vegas themselves, but they have helped to establish a design culture among Las Vegas city leaders that bodes well for the future."

Examples of the outstanding urban design efforts championed by the Goodmans include: the Fremont East Entertainment District, the Smith Center for the Performing Arts (principal design team: David M. Schwarz Architects, Inc., Fisher Dachs Associates, Akustiks, and HKS Architects, Inc.), the National Museum of Organized Crime & Law Enforcement (aka the Mob Museum; principal design team: Westlake Reed Leskosky (WRL) and Gallagher & Associates), and the Frank Gehry-designed Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health.

"We already have so many examples of how architecture can be integrated into the overall eclectic design of our downtown buildings. The Smith Center for the Performing Arts and the Frank Gehry-designed Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health are two fine examples, and we're just getting started," Mayor Goodman said. "We will continue to work to ensure future buildings in the downtown will be elevated to a high level architecturally."

The Las Vegas downtown transformation has been made possible in large part by a series of creative public-private partnerships forged and cultivated by the Goodmans. Among them is the relocation of online retail giant Zappos' corporate headquarters from Henderson, Nev., into Las Vegas' old City Hall, a 12-acre campus in the heart of downtown.

The Goodmans have also helped guide the design and construction in downtown Las Vegas of a new City Hall (principal design team: Elkus Manfredi Architects with executive architect JMA Architecture Studio), which has in turn catalyzed a series of mixed-use developments projected to create 13,000 permanent jobs, $4.1 billion in private investment, and $16–20 billion in new tax revenue. At the same time, the building itself has proven to be a model of sustainability.

Its 33 solar trees produce approximately 290,000 kilowatt hours of energy annually, while these and its other sustainability features help to reduce greenhouse gas omissions by 2,400 tons and energy costs by $400,000 each year.

"When we started in 1999, we had a vision for a downtown rich in art, culture and architecture, and we've come so far since then," the former Mayor said. "We now have buildings in the downtown that are architecturally known around the world, and I am proud to have been a part of that progress."

The Riley Award is presented annually by AAF in association with The United States Conference of Mayors. It is named after Mayor Joseph P. Riley Jr. of Charleston, S.C., who was first elected in 1975 and is now serving his tenth consecutive term in office. Under his leadership, Charleston has been widely acclaimed for its commitment to affordable housing and the revitalization of its waterfront and historic downtown business district. Mayor Riley was a founding father of the Mayors' Institute on City Design, a leadership initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with the American Architectural Foundation and The United States Conference of Mayors. Established in 1986, the Mayors' Institute has provided leadership training in city design to more than 900 mayors across America. Past recipients of the Riley Award include Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett (2013), Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter (2012), and former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley (2011).

Established in 1943, the American Architectural Foundation (AAF) is a national nonprofit organization headquartered in Washington, D.C. In the past decade alone, AAF has worked directly with civic leaders representing every major city and most mid-sized cities in the United States to address the challenges and leverage the opportunities of design in their cities. Through its programs, AAF serves as a national platform, information center, and collaborative hub for those leaders working on the ground in cities across the country to use the design of place as a means to improve lives and transform their communities.

The United States Conference of Mayors is the official non-partisan organization of cities with populations of 30,000 or more. There are 1,399 such cities in the country today. Each city is represented in the Conference by its chief elected official, the mayor. The primary roles of the Conference are to promote the development of effective national urban/suburban policy; strengthen federal-city relationships; ensure that federal policy meets urban needs; provide mayors with leadership and management tools; and create a forum in which mayors can share ideas and information.

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SOURCE The U.S. Conference of Mayors

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