New York-based Architectural Record magazine has selected the Denver Art Museum Shop as one of only nine winning projects in its annual Good Design is Good Business Awards of Excellence. The museum shop, which opened in November 2009, was designed by Denver’s Roth + Sheppard Architects.

DAM Shop Earns National Kudos
Photos: Courtesy of Roth + Sheppard Architects
DAM Shop Earns National Kudos

Formerly known as the Business Week/Architectural Record Awards, 2011 is the 13th year the Good Design is Good Business awards have been presented. The editors at Architectural Record said, “As one of only nine winning projects chosen from among dozens of impressive entries from around the world, winning this award should be especially gratifying this year.” The awards recognize projects with “innovative architectural strategies that help businesses achieve specific goals.”

“This is an extremely important award to us, as it demonstrates why design matters—especially when it comes to retail and restaurant design,” said Jeff Sheppard, Roth + Sheppard's design principal. “Many overt and subtle elements contributed to the Museum Shop’s dramatic 25 to 38% increase in revenue year over year, including the immediate draw of a more theatrical, evocative design aesthetic that not only reflects the Denver Art Museum's stunning exterior, but also attracts visitors.”

The design incorporates strategies such as an invisible threshold to allow the shop to seamlessly integrate with the dynamic architecture of the lobby; sensorial stimulation as an effective means of increasing visitation time and overall sales; strategically designed circulation path systems and displays intended to increase engagement with merchandise and draw visitors further into the space; elevated visitor perception of the quality of museum shop merchandise to one of 'art' reflecting museum exhibitions themselves further enhancing sales and profitability; and positioning of the most profitable department—jewelry—at the front of the store, highlighted with dramatic new display to stimulate sales,” Sheppard said.

The awards jury—comprised of members of the magazine’s editorial staff—gauges the success of each project’s “business case” via a series of quantitative and qualitative measurements of building performance. Factors considered include employee productivity, construction costs, reduced overhead, profitability and branding, among other criteria. The nine winning projects will be published in the May 2011 print issue of Architectural Record.