Public Works Project of the Year

Small Cities/Rural Communities


The APWA Public Works Project of the Year Award was established to promote excellence in the management, administration, and implementation of public works projects by recognizing the alliance between the managing agency, the consultant/architect/engineer, and the contractor who work together to complete public works projects.

Awards are given in five categories:

  • Structures—to include new public structures or the preservation or rehabilitation of existing public structures including, municipal buildings and parks. Other structures as defined in the Historic Restoration/Preservation and Transportation categories shall not be considered in the structures category
  • Transportation—to include roads, bridges, mass transit that serve any or all modes of travel, including bicycles and foot traffic. Other transportation projects as defined in the Historical Restoration/Preservation and Structures categories shall not be considered in the Transportation category
  • Environment—to include treatment and recycling facilities, landfill reclamation projects, and sewer projects
  • Historical Restoration/Preservation—to include historical restoration, preservation, and adaptive reuse of existing buildings, structures, and facilities, that are 75 years or older to qualify as historical
  • Disaster or Emergency Construction Repair—to include the techniques and timing for safety, community relations, environmental protection, adverse conditions, and additional considerations.



Public works projects must be developed, owned, and maintained by public agencies. To be eligible for nomination, a project must have been “substantially completed” and available for public and/or agency use within two calendar years prior to nomination. If a project has multiple phases or segments, then “substantially completed” will be construed as that point when the final phase or segment is 90 percent completed and available for public and/or agency use.

Additionally, the managing agency of the project must have a population of 50,000 people or less.

Selection Public Works Project of the Year award Recipients are chosen by a qualified panel of judges selected by the awards Committee.


Criteria to be used in the selection process include:

  1. Development of the project to meet a perceived need of the community
  2. Use of alternative materials, practices, or funding that demonstrates a commitment to sustainability and/or use of sustainable infrastructure rating system or the equivalent
  3. Unique or unusual accomplishments under adverse conditions that dictated the defined action
  4. Economic challenges that the community faced and the rationale of the option chosen
  5. Creative use of municipal resources, equipment, labor, or funds that produced measurable benefits to the community
  6. Construction processes that minimize the impact to the community and its residents during construction
  7. Demonstrate awareness of opportunities for environmental preservation during the project and how they were incorporated in the project design and construction
  8. Additional conditions deemed of importance to the public works agency, such as exceptional efforts to maintain quality control and, if value engineering is used, construction innovations as evidenced by time and/or money‐saving techniques developed and/or successfully utilized
Nomination Process

Nominations of projects can only be made by the managing agency. Submissions are limited to 20 pages. Please address each of the following areas in your nomination, adhering to the sequence above. No letters of recommendations, please.

Projects that receive a chapter Award will automatically be forwarded by the Awards Committee to the National APWA competition in time to meet the national deadline. Projects that do NOT receive a Chapter Award will still be considered for the National Competition and may also be forwarded on by the judges. Note that a project under consideration for a National Award may only be nominated once for recognition as “Project of the Year – Small cities and Rural Communities” under any category.

If your project is selected as a Chapter Award winner, you will be asked to provide a one-page Press Release, in electronic format, that clearly and concisely describes the project and its value to the community and highlights why the project is worthy of special recognition (innovative engineering, challenges faced, overall social impact, etc)

The submittal should be sent to Jennifer Barlas, Wisconsin Chapter Awards Chair at The nomination and supporting data forms are available on the Chapter website, Awards – APWA Wisconsin Chapter.


January 31, annually


A designated representative of the public agency, contractor, and consultant are presented a plaque at the Awards Recognition Ceremony during the annual APWA Wisconsin Chapter Spring Conference and winners are featured in APWA publications.

Winners are also invited to the annual APWA Wisconsin Chapter Fall Conference to present their project during the conference technical sessions.

  Nominate Project Here

Check List

January 31st-11:59 pm CT

Project of the Year Awards

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