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Gold Nugget Awards Name Yannanoli Court As Project of the Year

Berkus Design Touted for Green, Sustainable Concepts

Santa Barbara, Calif., June 25, 2009 --The 2009 Gold Nugget Awards have named Yanonali Court in Santa Barbara as its Project of the Year. Yanonali Court also earned a Gold Nugget Grand Award as Sustainable Residential Neighborhood. A pilot project for Santa Barbara’s “Built Green” program, Yanonali Court has earned the United States Green Building Council LEED® for Homes Platinum certification.

Project of the Year honors are discretionary, outside regular categories and reserved for a project judges find truly exceptional. Such an award is not accorded every year, according to Gold Nugget Judging Chairman Peter Mayer.

Architects are Barry Berkus, founder and head of B3 Architects, a Berkus Design Studio in Santa Barbara; and his son Jeffrey Berkus, who heads Jeffrey Berkus Architects, Inc. of Aspen, Colorado. Steven Berkus, who heads Berkus Construction in Santa Barbara, is the builder; Del Mar Development and Berkus Construction are co-developers.

The nine-member judging panel praised Yanonali Court on several scores, extolling its success in achieving LEED Platinum certification in an aesthetically desirable framework. Occupying just one-quarter of an acre in downtown Santa Barbara, the 5-unit pocket neighborhood features a central courtyard with a shared fireplace and fountain that provide pleasing outdoor space and enhance Spanish architectural traditions.

On-site rainwater collection, pervious paving materials, and xeriscaping with sustainable irrigation practices are central to the project’s drought tolerant mission. “Herein lies a model for good architecture and craftsmanship, as well as sustainability,” noted the judges.

“The entire project team is sincerely gratified by this recognition,” said Barry Berkus. “This project demonstrates that green, sustainable housing can also be inviting and nurturing— that’s key to helping sustainability become the norm for built developments of all types.”
B3 earned a second Grand Award for “Urban Crashpad,” an 894-square foot residence on Equestrian Street in Santa Barbara. In the same custom home category, a B3 design in Montecito, built by Young Construction, took an Award of Merit.

UCSB’s Mosher Alumni House earned an Award of Merit for B3 as a special use facility. The builder/contractor is Soltek Pacific and the developer is UCSB Design and Construction Services.  The Oxbow residence in Solvang took an Award of Merit, as outstanding renovated project. The builder is Randy Barnes.

B3 was also recognized for research and development concepts submitted under “Imagining the Future,” a PCBC-Gold Nugget venture geared to forward thinking in land use and development. The program also featured design students partnering with established firms to explore homes and neighborhoods for the next generation.

B3 Architects, a Berkus Design Studio was founded by Barry A. Berkus, AIA, who leads a talented team of professionals in custom and multi-family housing, mixed use, golf resort/clubhouse, public places, educational buildings, planning and design. The firm has received more than 450 design and planning awards; Berkus has received multiple individual honors for achievements in design, planning and futurist concepts. 

Now in its 46th year, the Gold Nugget Awards competition honors architectural design and planning excellence in 14 Western States and internationally.  The San Francisco awards ceremonies highlighted PCBC®, the nation’s largest regional conference and trade show for real estate development. See winners and judges’ comments at Also see


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