GWWO’s newly constructed interpretive center has been honored by AIA Baltimore with a 2017 Excellence in Design Award.
This year's jury, comprised of members from AIA Seattle, focused on architecture's impact on real people. The design of the new Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center expresses the importance of traveling northward to escape the circumstances of slavery through an integrated site, building, and exhibit design. Conceived as a series of abstracted forms that can be interpreted in many ways—from the farmstead vernacular of the region to stations along the Underground Railroad—the center immerses visitors in the story of Tubman’s life. Functioning as the principal point of welcome to a national heritage corridor of interrelated sites, the center engages and educates visitors, while also orienting them to other sites in the area and encouraging further exploration. The center is one of more than 30 sites along the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway in Church Creek, Maryland.