(Read original story here)
By David Basulto
The first two days of the World Architecture Festival 2013 have been intense. Keynotes by Charles Jencks and Dietmer Eberle and several other lectures filled the auditorium and festival hall stage, while hundreds of architects watched the live “crits,” during which firms presented their projects in front of the festival jury and an audience.
Following these two days the winners of each category were finally announced, and today the super jury will choose the World Building of the Year, followed by a lecture by Sou Fujimoto. Stay tuned for updates via Twitter!
Check the full list of winners, highly commended entries and the jury's comments (so far) here:
BUILDINGS CATEGORY WINNERS:
House -- The Left-Over-Space House (Australia), Cox Rayner Architects, Casey and Rebekah Vallance
This narrow private house demonstrates what can be achieved on the myriad of ‘left-over’ spaces in inner cities, such as disused easements or parking lots. In this case, a 3 meter wide tiny caretaker’s cottage, adjoining a Heritage Hall has been recycled and linearly extended into a family house for parents and two children. The judges praised the beautiful detailing and masterful craft and said, "There’s a realness and authenticity to the spirit of the house that reflects the owners."
The judges also highly commended two projects. The first was The Nest, Vietnam by a21studio where they admired the strong conceptual approach. The other commended project was HOUSE House in Australia by Andrew Maynard Architects which was, said the judges, "bold in its attitude to engage the carpark and neighbourhood."
Housing -- 28th Street Apartments (USA), Koning Eizenberg Architecture
This project restores principal spaces and features of a historic YMCA (1926) designed by noted African American architect Paul R. William and inserts new housing on a small site in south Los Angeles . Restoration focused on stretching a limited budget to reinstate the exterior composition of the building and clarify interior principal spaces while adapting for the adjusted use. An interstitial floor was added above the ground floor to hide new service runs thereby preserving the appearance of historic ceilings below and existing apartments on upper floors enlarged to meet current housing standards. Outside, key ornaments were replicated and the rusticated base expressed. Twenty-five new residential units were added in a thin five-story stucco-clad building that abuts the existing building at the rear of the lot. The judges said, "This project demonstrates architecture as an agent for social transformation. The architect was able to knit together historical continuity and something very new, something of high architectural value."
The judges highly commended Barajas Social Building Block in Spain by Miralles Tagliabue EMBT "because of the creativity and joy brought to the challenges of low cost housing."
Office -- Statoil Regional and International offices (Norway) A-Lab
The new Statoil regional and international offices at Fornebu is result of an open competition won by Norwegian architects a-lab in February 2009, with completion of the building the autumn of 2012. The iconic structure seeks to reflect Statoil’s role as an innovative and internationally pioneering petroleum company as well as giving a new identity and pulse to the local environment. The new office building stands on the site of the old airport’s multistory car park. The structure consists of five office lamellas of identical size, stacked on top of each other. The concept minimizes the environmental footprint of the building and gives a generous amount of space to the surrounding park. The judges said, "This was a comprehensive and integrated project that merges modular construction and cost effectiveness in a modern Scandinavian way, demonstrating a deep understanding of democratic and social values in the new working environment. The whole social life of the building revolves around a central circulation tower fostering high levels of casual interaction in a company that shares international knowledge. An almost column free open and light interior makes a delightfully stimulating workplace."
Higher Education and Research -- University of Exeter: Forum Project (UK), Wilkinson Eyre Architects
The orientation and arrangement of this building and its adjacent landscaped piazzas respond to the contours of the hillside setting, which are traced by a “green corridor”; the main pedestrian route through the scheme. The steep topography of the hillside has been rationalized into two circulation levels that connect the library and the great hall, unifying two vital centers once separated by a steep slope. A landscaped entrance piazza defines a new front door to the campus. Designed by the landscape architect Hargreaves, the piazza provides students with high-quality open space for relaxation at the natural centre of the campus. Specially commissioned public art, by the glass artist Alexander Beleshenko, joins art from the University’s own collection on prominent display. The judges said, "The project creates hugely uplifting spaces for the students with a delightfully detailed timber gridshell roof (engineered by Buro Happold)."
The judges highly commended two projects. They were Centro Roberto Garza Sada de Arte Arquitectura y Diseño in Mexico by Universidad de Monterrey and Tadao Ando, and Swanston Academic Building, RMIT University, Australia by Lyons.
Display -- The Blue Planet (Denmark), 3XN
Inspired by the shape of water in endless motion, Denmark’s new National Aquarium, The Blue Planet is shaped as a great whirlpool, and the building itself tells the story of what awaits inside. The Blue Planet is located on an elevated headland towards the sea, north of Kastrup Harbor. Its distinctive shape is clearly visible for travellers arriving by plane at the nearby Copenhagen Airport. The facade is covered with more than 33,000 small diamond-shaped aluminum shingles, which adapts to the building's organic form. The judges were delighted by the entrance experience and the sculptural form. They said, "It deals successfully with the site and finds opportunity where there is little context. It overcomes significant engineering and technical challenges."
Religion -- Sancaklar Mosque (Turkey), EAA – Emre Arolat Architects
Sancaklar Mosque, located in Buyukçekmece, a suburban neighborhood in the outskirts of Istanbul, aims to address the fundamental issues of designing a mosque by distancing itself from the current architectural discussions based on form and focusing solely on the essence of religious space. The high walls surrounding the park on the upper courtyard of the mosque depict a clear boundary between the chaotic outer world and the serene atmosphere of the public park. The long canopy stretching out from the park becomes the only architectural element visible from the outside. The building is located below this canopy and can be accessed from a path from the upper courtyard through the park. The building blends in completely with the topography and the outside world is left behind as one moves through the landscape, down the hill and in between the walls to enter the mosque. The interior of the mosque, a simple cave like space, becomes a dramatic and awe inspiring place to pray and be alone with God. The slits and fractures along the Qiblah wall enhance the directionality of the prayer space and allows daylight to filter into the prayer hall. The judges said, "The project captured the spiritual essence of a mosque without being referential."
The judges also highly commended St Barnabas Church in Australia by Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp.
Schools -- Fontys Sports College (Netherlands) Mecanoo International
Mecanoo’s Fontys Sports College, with state of the art sports facilities and a comprehensive sustainability concept, is a social sports facility designed to contribute to the social and athletic vibrancy of Genneper Parks Unusually, the sports facilities are on the first floor. This means the college is does not function as an autonomous sports box, but rather has a completely transparent ground floor connecting its indoor activities to those in the immediate environment – the surrounding sports fields, and other facilities. The judges were delighted by the way that light entered the building and said, "A conventional solution would have resulted in closed boxes."
Shopping -- Emporia (Sweden), Wingardh Arkitektkontor
Emporia is an urban planning project in which offices, housing, and retail come together in a mixed-use development along Boulevarden and Stationsgatan in Hyllie, on the south side of Malmö. The main idea of the winning competition entry was to hide inward-looking retail behind a wreath of residential and commercial buildings. The judges were delighted by the publicly accessible roof, with grass hills covering economical rooms. They said, "Malls are generally massive; this one, despite its size, does not impose on its surroundings."
The judges also highly commended Mackelvie Street, New Zealand, by RTA Studio.
Civic and Community -- Women's Opportunity Centre (Rwanda), Sharon Davis Design
Designed in collaboration with Women for Women International, this mini-village transforms urban agglomeration and subsistence farming with an architectural agenda to create economic opportunity, rebuild social infrastructure, and restore African heritage. The design revives a lost Rwandan design tradition with deep spatial and social layers. Its circular forms radiate outward, from intimate classrooms at the centre of the site to a community space, farmer’s market, and the civic realm beyond. The project includes a demonstration farm that helps women produce and market their own goods. The project impressed the judges as a holistic solution socially, economically and environmentally. ‘As a bonus,’ they said, "the women who were the end users actually made the bricks."
Villa -- Namly House (Singapore), CHANG Architects
This house for multi-generational living was designed for a couple who wanted to house three generations under one roof, to enjoy grandparenthood, without having to compromise on the freedom, differing needs and privacies of each generation. The brief to the architect was to design a tropical house in reinforced concrete, a deck where the client could rest and gaze upon the scenery of the neighborhood, internal walls in white putty finish, and minimal openings to the front and the side for privacy and noise control. The judges were delighted by the use and manipulation of light, material and greenery on a tight, limited typical plot in Singapore. They said, "This project reflects the social and cultural dynamics of the Southeast Asian urban context."
Health -- Rush University Medical Center New Hospital Tower (Chicago), Perkins+Will
This hospital in Chicago is part of a campus-wide transformation project which also includes an orthopedic building and a parking structure and new loading and delivery system. The 800,000 square foot hospital consists of 386 patient beds along with diagnostic and treatment facilities such as surgery, radiology and emergency departments. The organizational concept consists of a rectangular six-story base containing new diagnostic and treatment facilities topped by a five-story curvilinear bed tower. The base connects to existing diagnostic treatment facilities to create a new continuous interventional platform. The geometry of the bed tower maximizes views and natural light for patient rooms while also creating an environment for efficient and safe health care. The judges said this was, "a sensitive approach to context, an innovative solution to a highly complex program, combined in a compelling result that challenges stereotypes of institutionalized health care."
The judges highly commended the Kinghorn Cancer Centre by BVN Donovan Hill.
Production, Energy and Recycling -- A Simple Factory Building (Singapore), Pencil Office
A Simple Factory Building addresses two contradicting demands: the mitigation of tropical solar radiation, and the openness, views, and transparency sought by the clients in a basic industrial typology. It uses a sophisticated 1.2m-deep veil fabricated in lightweight Dryvit and a bronze full-height window-wall envelope to reconcile this architectural conflict. In addition to shading the building from direct sunlight, the veil’s pattern changes to exploit neighboring park views while obstructing unsightly views to the immediate vicinity of the industrial neighborhood. The degree of perforation varies to create openness and privacy in relation to internal programming. From street level, the resulting facade is seen as an anamorphic pattern that creates an optical disturbance to the normative clues that describe the scale of buildings and allow for floor counts. The judges said this was a "well thought out, elegant solution with climatic shaping, creating huge quality internal spaces."
Hotel and Leisure -- Citizen M London Bankside (UK), Concrete
citizenM is a new Dutch hotel group that opened citizenM Bankside, the fourth hotel that offers mobile citizens of the world affordable luxury in the heart of the city. The concept is to cut out all hidden costs and unnecessary items, to provide its guests a luxury feel for a budget price. The rooms are stacked on a ground floor with a dynamic lobby, living room space and F&B functions including a public accessible cafe. The building has landed in the upcoming neighborhood of Southwark. The location provided the possibility to position two blocks of rooms behind each other, which results in the first citizenM with a courtyard. This courtyard is designed as outdoor living room, creating a beautiful oasis in the heart of the hotel and brings daylight into the rooms, societyM and the public life of the hotel. There are terraces on several floors that can be used for drinks, some fresh air, or a smoke if you still have this habit. The public areas of this hotel are the first in a new generation for citizenM. The space is divided in several living and working rooms where you can find the environments you need to work, socialize, relax or have a drink. You can choose a living room with a cozy fireplace or go for a more cafe style environment. Choose to work at the communal tables or enjoy a croissant in the courtyard. The judges said, "The questions asked by the designers led to a process that has amazing immediacy."
The judges highly commended Kontum Indochina Café in Vietnam by Vo Trong Nghia Architects for its "amazing material research and development."
Sport -- Splashpoint Leisure Centre (UK), Wilkinson Eyre Architects
The new pool complex includes a six lane, 25-meter pool, a combined learner/diving pool, indoor leisure pools with rapids, flumes and outdoor pool, a health and fitness centre, café, crèche and flexible space for other activities. The dynamic, fragmented shape of the new leisure centre is arranged to respond to the surrounding mix of built forms and landscape. The fluid form reflects the fluid nature of the pools and the sea beyond, created by meandering extruded forms. The building’s dramatic sawtooth roof, with its ranks of sinuous ridges, recalls a series of dunes that curve and twist towards the coast. This shape reduces the visual mass of the buildings and mediates the change in scale from the terraced houses that line the coastal road to the expansiveness of the open sea. The judges praised the sensitive breakdown of external massing to match the scale of Worthing’s Regency terraces. They said "there is a lovely use of clerestories to allow light into the main pool spaces."
The judges highly commended Wanangkura Stadium, Australia by ARM Architecture as a "firm solution to a tough environmental context."
New and Old -- Conversion of the Palais Rasumofsky (Austria), Baar-Baarenfels Architekten
The palais was built for Andrei Kirillowitsch Duke Rasumofsky, the former Russian ambassador under Czar Alexander during the time of the Viennese Congress of 1806. The central building was damaged during World War II and poorly repaired and maintained during the post-war period, leading to significant problems. The building is listed as a historical building and, therefore, careful reconstruction and analysis of new strategies was conducted in order to enhance the overall building structure. All inauthentic elements, such as the roof, stairs, and interior wall modifications were demolished and a new vertical circulation scheme was developed with the addition of an underground parking structure and support spaces. The new aluminum roof envelope is supported by a steel truss system articulated by a series of Vierendeel trusses in alignment with the existing building. The penthouse apartment is surrounded by terraces and incorporates vertical full height glazing allowing a transparency with integrated sun protection fins to provide solar control. The roof sun protection, made from extruded aluminum fins, provides shading and framing , of exterior views. The ground floor is primarily a 6 meter high art gallery space with two larger spaces connected by the insertion of a new second level gallery space spanned between two free-standing angled concrete slabs. The newly created reinforced organic concrete staircase is sleek in appearance due to the tapered structural form, The judges said, "This, quite possibly, is a once in a lifetime opportunity to influence a 200-year-old building with great historical significance. The architect demonstrated through his actions the resolution of a paradox: the boldness of a design concept that in expression was delicate and articulate."
Transport -- Sydney Cruise Terminal (Australia), Johnson Pilton Walker Architects
Sydney Cruise Terminal is a new cruise facility located in Sydney Harbour, to serve Australia’s rapidly expanding leisure cruise industry. The design features a contemporary roof canopy draped from a historically significant gantry crane structure. The structure has been retained as a memory of the site’s previous use as a home port for the world’s first regular international containerized shipping service, commencing operations between Sydney and Europe in the late 1960s. The judges said, "This is a simple, elegant assembly of components and a good integration of new and old."
Culture -- Aukland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki (New Zealand), Frances-Jones Morehen Thorp and Archimedia
The new Auckland Art Gallery is an extensive public project that includes: the restoration and adaption of heritage buildings; a new building extension which more than doubles the public exhibition areas; extensive basement storage and support areas; and the redesign of adjacent areas of Albert Park. The architecture developed from a concept which relates as much to the organic natural forms of the landscape as it does to the architectural order and character of the heritage buildings. The new building is characterized by a series of fine ‘tree-like’ canopies that define and cover the entry forecourt, atrium and gallery areas. These light, profiled forms are inspired by the adjacent canopy of pohutukawa trees and ‘hover’ over the stone walls and terraces that reinterpret the natural topography of the site. The ceilings of the canopies are assembled from carefully selected Kauri, profiled into precise geometric patterns and supported on slender and tapering shafts. These emblematic forms give the gallery a unique identity that is inspired by the natural landscape of the site. The judges said, "This is a highly sensitive addition to Auckland Art Gallery which reanimates and reinvigorates the existing building. It responds brilliantly to context and site and gives the gallery a new architectural identity."
The judges highly commended the Museum for Architectural Drawing in Berlin, Germany by Architectural Bureau SPEECH Tchoban/Kuznetsov calling it "a wonderful cabinet of curiosities."
FUTURE PROJECTS WINNERS:
Health –- New Sulaibikhat Medical Center (Kuwait) AGi Architects
A pioneer in the healthcare sector in the MENA region, New Sulaibhikat Medical Centre, designed by Spanish practice AGI Architects, addresses challenging issues such as privacy and security by using a new model, where courtyards attached to the façade are the driving element behind this unique typology. The judges praised this reprogramming of existing health services that draws on the needs of local people. "It overcame the limitations of the normal existing typology," they said.
House –- Meditation House (Lebanon), MZ Architects
The Meditation House has been designed as a place of contemplation and retreat blending into the natural surrounding and landscape. The client chose a tranquil rocky hill previously acquired for the purpose of pine tree planting as the ideal location for his weekend house, in complete contrast to his hectic business-oriented and traveling lifestyle. Resembling a giant fallen rock nestled on the edge of the hill with a panoramic view of neighboring pine forests and facing the seaside, the meditation house and its adjacent prayer hall –- Musalla –- create a dialogue with both nature (horizontally) and God (vertically), reflecting the owner’s sensitivity towards the environment and his relationship with God. The judges described the spaces as primal and appropriate for the climate, praising the strong response to the site.
The judges also highly commended Towerhouse Salten Tomanegg in Italy by markus tauber architectura.
Commercial Mixed Use –- New Office in Central London (UK), Allford Hall Monaghan Morris
Together, the W4 and W5 blocks on London’s Regent Street renew two prestigious Grade II listed central London sites to create state-of-the art retail and office accommodation. The curved ‘tulip’ profiles of the two new structures sit behind four retained façades on Regent and New Burlington streets, tapering towards the sky. Setbacks at ground level create two crisply defined bases that address and improve the public realm. The glazed roof to the atrium maximizes the amount of light filtering through to the office floors and features glass structural beams. As well as providing a light source to the deeper parts of the floor plates, the atrium and its breakout spaces bring activity and movement into the development’s central zone. The judges said that the project was a very well-balanced response to commercial needs whilst respecting its historical context. They described the in-depth attention to detail as "watchmaking."
The judges highly commended LATITUD 19 in Mexico by Arqmov Workshop, which they described as a "a creative and light response to the normal 'sealed box' mentality of retail architecture."
Office –- Selcuk Ecza Headquarters (Turkey), Tabanlioglu Architects
The elderly couple that owns this pharmaceutical company wanted a homely feeling at the office, and so the scale, organisation and aesthetics refer to residential settings, namely traditional Istanbul waterside mansions. Seven house-like volumes with hipped roofs form the campus. The individual "houses" integrate with each other through gardens, roof gardens, upper or lower patios and paths and atria. The brown color of the exterior has a soft wood effect and unifies the structure. The judges said they were delighted by the way that "the notion of work environments can evolve into more pleasant, humanized spaces that can also foster socialization and creativity."
Leisure-Led Development – Singapore Sports Hub (Singapore), Singapore Sports Hub Design Team (DP Architects and Arup associates)
In 2014, Singapore will celebrate the opening of Asia’s first integrated sports, leisure, entertainment and lifestyle destination –- the Singapore Sports Hub. Located on a 35 hectare waterfront site close to the heart of Singapore, the Sports Hub will provide a wide range of sporting, community, retail, recreational and leisure spaces within easy reach of the city centre and international airport. The main buildings –- the National Stadium, the Aquatic Centre (AQC) and the Sports Halls -– have been designed as flexible multi-sport venues, supporting the widest variety of events throughout the year, day and night. The stadium itself will be the first in the world designed to host athletics, football, rugby and cricket all in one venue. The judges said, ‘Singapore Sports Hub won this category due to its exemplary master-planning vision, engineering, solutions and handling of diverse program scales to generate an important new addition to Singapore which is open to all."
Master-planning – Earls Court Masterplan (UK) Farrells
Farrells’ proposals for Earls Court, a major area of west London, are based on the belief that urban developments should blend in with existing urban settings and become thriving, vibrant neighborhoods in their own rights. The master plan design proposes the transformation of the Earls Court & West Kensington Opportunity Area (the Opportunity Area) into a new urban district. Inspired by the best characteristics of London, the master plan will create four urban villages and a 21st century High Street. The design will provide sustainable urban living comprising new homes, offices, hotels, work space, education and community facilities, and a new destination for leisure and culture. The judges said, "The design takes cognizance of the urban fabric of London and connects the districts on either side through similar planning principles and spaces as have existed in London for many years. Rather than trying to create a different kind of typology or landmark which could have been done in a project of this scale, the design shows continuity, deep-rooted design inferences and is a sustainable role model."
Infrastructure -– Brisbane Ferry Terminals Post-Flood Recovery (Australia), Cox Rayner Architects
This soon-to-be-built project resulted from a design competition to conceive a new ferry terminal suite in the wake of the devastating 2011 Brisbane floods. The aim of the project was to see if it were possible to design a flood-resilient ferry terminal to replace the 20 destroyed by the impact of water pressure and of debris crushing against the gangways and piles of the former terminals. The terminals firstly comprise a single tall mass pile to replace the former ribbon of piles that stabilized the pontoon platform. This pile also acts as each terminal’s marker along the Brisbane river. The second move was to devise a gangway with float tanks underneath so that, in a flood event, it lifts off a pin and rotates to allow debris to float through. The designers believe that this new system is adaptable to many such applications worldwide. The judges praised the simple, elegant ingenious solution that addresses many issues including creating a small but high-quality public space in the floating structure.They said, ‘It captures the quality of Queensland, Australian architecture –- that is to say, openness, light-weight structures and providing shade and shadow.
Education -– The Urban School In Elsinore (Denmark), EFFEKT, Rubow
The project combines the planning of the new Urban School District in Helsingør, design of a new sports complex, transformation of existing historical buildings and new plazas into one united and modern School. The idea is to create an open, integrated and modern educational environment that’s both educationally visionary and creates a new and attractive urban district for the City of Helsingør and its inhabitants. The judges said, "The interventions were gentle yet varied, demanding different thoughts and skills and leading to a varied spatial experience conducive to a child experiencing the outdoors, as well as layers of history."
Competition Entries –- National Maritime Museum of China (China), Cox Rayner Architects
This project won the international competition to design China’s new National Maritime Museum to be located in the port city of Tianjin close to Beijing. The competition was held over six months in three stages, each unusually providing jury feedback to those competitors selected to progress. The design comprises five hall structures radiating out to the port harbor and converging in a central ‘Preface Hall’. Functionally, the idea is to bring all visitors up a rampart to an elevated level and access from there either of two split levels which occupy each hall. This strategy enabled the collections and operational centre of the museum to be located immediately under the Preface Hall with direct lower level access into each hall. The judges said, "This was the most developed scheme in this category. It addressed its relation with the water very successfully. Its form was not overly obvious but could be translated as boats or fish or hands."
Residential –- Siamese Blossom (Thailand), Somdoon Architects Ltd
Siamese Blossom is a townhouse project on Raminthra Road, a suburb to the north of Bangkok. The scheme aims to create a living space within greenery, conveying a sense of community, and to fix the common problems of townhouses. These include a lack of natural ventilation and a lack of natural light found in long and narrow plots. The townhouses are arranged to allow the narrow elevations facing East and West to gain minimum heat from the sun. In contrast, the long elevations entail openings facing the North and South to get natural ventilation. They are perpendicular to the main public road in the centre of the development. Plants, walls and fences along the main public road provide security and control before access to the townhouses, whilst maintaining a friendly atmosphere. The judges said, "This project is well developed, very understated and a delight architecturally."
The judges also highly commended two projects. The first was Sky Terrace @ Dawson, Singapore by SCDA Architects, which they praised for its extended social agenda married with a sustainable approach to tower construction. The second was Eco Villas Catuçaba, Brazil by StudioMK27, which they found "architecturally beautiful and very respectful to its natural surroundings."
Experimental –- White Collar Factory (UK), Allford Hall Monaghan Morris
The White Collar Factory is a new building at the heart of Old Street Yard in London’s emerging Tech City quarter. The 16-story White Collar Factory tower will soon stand tall at the Old Street roundabout in EC1. Featuring big spans, flexible floor plates, windows that open, large volumes and robust construction, it is a ‘new’ office building that takes its cues from the multilevel factory typology. Behind, a redundant service yard will be transformed and reoriented into a new public realm that responds to the wider city, designed to attract companies of all shapes and sizes for a diverse business community. A series of new alleys and passages will connect the square and tower to two existing and three new buildings – all of four to five storys and offering a mix of living and working spaces. The judges said, "This project demonstrates experimentation with potential for real future impact. It is pragmatic, flexible, and steers away from architectural self-centeredness or ego."
Cultural -- National Maritime Museum of China by Cox Rayner Architects
Australian practice Cox Rayner won the international competition to design China’s new National Maritime Museum to be located in the port city of Tianjin close to Beijing. Its design comprises five hall structures radiating out to the port harbor and converging in a central ‘Preface Hall’. Functionally, the idea is to bring all visitors up a rampart to an elevated level and access from there either of two split levels which occupy each hall. This strategy enabled the collections and operational centre of the museum to be located immediately under the Preface Hall with direct lower level access into each hall. The judges said, "This got better over the seven month period of the competition and was a worthy winner."
The judges also highly commended the Syrian Orthodox Church in Istanbul Turkey by Suyabatmaz Demirel Architects.