By Carolyn Weber, Christina B. Farnsworth, and Loretta Williams In the interest of creating new traditions for the new millennium, the Builder's Choice judging was moved from the quaint town of Woodstock, Vt., to the backdrop of America's Castles: Newport, R.I.

Although our judges' panel of eight distinguished architects and builders appreciated the grandeur of the town's historical structures--like Vanderbilt's lavish summer home, The Breakers--they agreed that the theme of this year's competition was simplicity.

As the judges studied the hundreds of entries, they were uninspired by gigantic houses with square footage for the sake of square footage and tricked-up exteriors with phony details. Rather, they opted to reward smaller projects with humble materials used in elegant and subtle forms with carefully crafted details.

The 46 winners are a diverse mix of single-family and multifamily projects in urban, rural, and suburban settings. What they have in common is an appropriate response to their context. Whether it's an isolated custom home or a renovated city loft, the judges applauded sensitive site planning that incorporates open outdoor areas, separates the pedestrian from the automobile, and provides the right balance of public and private spaces.

Project of the Year Award: Pins Sur Mer

Grand Award: Block X

Grand Award: Desilva Island

Grand Award: Freeman House

Grand Award: Davidson at Cielo--The Hilton Residence

Grand Award: Lakeside Residence

Grand Award: Willow Court

Grand Award: Ocean Walk, Plan 1

Grand Award: Cozzens Residence

Grand Award: Gateway Commons

Grand Award: SoliVita

Grand Award: Emeryville Lofts

Grand Award: Poulsbo Place

Grand Award: Delmar-Lema Village

Grand Award: Misquamicut State Beach Facility

Merit Award: Vicki's Creek House

Merit Award: Townhomes @ Center Commons

Merit Award: Watermark, Casa Pacifica

Merit Award: Columbia Communities at DC Ranch

Merit Award: Neskowin Beach House

Merit Award: The River Lofts at Tobacco Row

Merit Award: Chimney Corners, Wishing Well Model

Merit Award: Block 588

Merit Award: Riverwalk at Belmont Bay

Merit Award: Village One at Newport Bluffs

Merit Award: Cordevalle Vineyard Estates, The Farmhouse

Merit Award: New Pennley Place

Merit Award: Skolos/Wedell Home and Studio

Merit Award: Cabot Bay at Bridgeport

Merit Award: The Colony at Bridgeport Plan 3

Merit Award: Pinole Gardens

Merit Award: Private Residence

Merit Award: Echelon at Lakeside

Merit Award: The Golf Club of Purchase

Merit Award: Marston Point Place

Merit Award: Family Building Blocks Child Development Center

Affordable Award: Moon Ridge Village

Affordable Award: Pensione Esperanza Sro Hotel

Special Focus Award: Anderson-Pettitt Residence

Special Focus Award: Cathedral City Town Square and Fountain of Life

Special Focus Award: Residence on the Potomac at Little Falls

Special Focus Award: Estates at Cielo

Special Focus Award: The Christopher Collection, Davinci

Special Focus Award: Brenthaven

Meet the Builder's Choice Judges