Merit Awards Entry Details

Click Here to submit a project

As the Merit Awards are considered  the “Academy Awards” of the building industry, the recipient of each Merit Award is kept secret right up to the evening of the CBC’s Gala Merit Award Night dinner. The awards are revealed sequentially during the tense moments of reviewing each of the four finalist projects, then announcing the winner. Appropriately enough, since the Chicago Building Congress is considered “The Cornerstone of the Building Industry in Chicago,” thrilled winners receive a granite cornerstone Merit Award from CBC, thus placing their projects in the company of all of these distinguished winners.

Merit Awards are presented for construction in nine categories:
New Construction Chicago
Over $55 Million
New Construction Chicago
Under $55 Million
New Construction Suburbs
Rehab Construction
Construction Under $15 Million
Infrastructure Construction
Industrial Construction
Interior Buildout
CBC / COAA Owners’ Choice Award

The Merit Awards are open to all types and sizes of projects completed during the 2014, 2015 and 2016 calendar years anywhere in the Chicagoland area. You need not be a member of the CBC to submit a nomination.

Intent to Nominate Deadline
The “Intent to Nominate” online form must be submitted by January 31, 2017.

Winners will be Announced on May 23, 2017

Join the CBC in honoring the 2017 Merit Award winners on Tuesday, May 23rd at the Marriott Magnificent Mile. 

Cocktails & Networking begin at 5:30 pm with Dinner & Award Ceremony following.  

Formal  dinner registration will be available March 2017. 

Entry Details
Member Entry: $275 per submission
Non-member Entry: $525 per submission
Accepted forms of pay include: 
Check (payable to the Chicago Building Congress), Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover.
Fees are due at time of nomination submission

Click Here to submit a project

Material Requirements and Deadlines
For further entry details including all required material and material deadlines please refer to the information on our website at the following address: 
Judging Criteria
All project categories will be judged on the basis of the following:

  • Distinctive, functional, or innovative design
  • Quality of Construction
  • Impact of the project upon the community
  • Safety Record

The Awards Committee will employ all of the above criteria in judging each entry. Please refer to the CBC/COAA Owners’ Choice section for additional award criteria.

CBC / COAA Owners’ Choice Award Criteria
The “CBC / COAA Owners’ Choice Award” is provided in collaboration with the Construction Owners Association of America (COAA) Illinois Chapter. COAA is dedicated to supporting project owners’ success through education, information and relationship building (see

In addition to the judging criteria previously stated, entries will also be judged by a panel of CBC and COAA members on the basis of the extent to which the project benefited the owner the most in term of the project team’s success in meeting or exceeding the project goals.

These goals include:

  • End User Satisfaction: How did the project surpass stated objectives and enhance end users’ missions, improve their environment, or similar?
  • Project Team Collaboration: Steps the project team took to enhance project team collaboration and how that collaboration improved project delivery
  • Schedule and Cost Management: Project implementation strategies that avoided or overcame problems, averted schedule delays, preserved contingency funds, avoided change orders, etc.
  • Innovation: Evaluate unique ways the project team provided exceptional or unexpected benefit to the Owner.
  • Project Delivery Method: Did the team design a delivery method for the project’s unique requirements rather than manage the project according to their own familiar procedures?