Thursday, June 27, 2013

Winners and honorary mentions in the triennal Architecture of Necessity have been announced

At Wood Summit Smaland at Virserum Art Museum the winners and the honorary mentions were announced by the jury at the evening dinner on 26 June.

Statement of the jury

Virserum Art Museum has invited contributions to a Triennale for an Architecture of Necessity in 2013. 225 contributions from 35 countries were sent in. A jury consisting of Claes Caldenby, Mohamed El-Sioufi, Sadie Morgan and Katarina Pelin has selected four winners. The winners of a similar competition in 2010, Tyin architects, were also invited to the jury. They could not participate in the jury meeting but gave their preferences separately to the jury.

Due to the great variety of the contributions and in many cases their high quality the jury has decided to award four prizes, representing different conditions and categories. The winners of the 2013 Triennale for an Architecture of Necessity are:

Liyuan Library by Li Xiaodong, Tsinghua university, China. For its beautiful use of a local material. together with modern recyclable ones, and for its meditative interpretation of the site. The small library  in a village near Beijing uses the nearby water for simple cooling and the public is invited to contribute to the book collection.

Watermark/One Angel Lane by Fletcher Priest architects, Great Britain. For its sensitive development of a site on the river Thames in central London, increasing public space while building a new hq for Nomura. The building reuses parts of existing structures and is classified as carbon neutral. It also has a kitchen garden, including beehives, introducing urban agriculture in the centre of the city and making a distinct environmental statement.

Locally manufactured school in Pakistan by Roswag Architekten, Germany. For its ingenious use and development of local materials, cooling cob and fast-growing bamboo, as well as proactive training of local artisans and job creation. The resulting school for girls has a pleasant climate both summer and winter and a resilience strategy for facing earthquake risks.

Christchurch recovery plan by Gehl architects, Denmark/Christchurch City Council, New Zealand. For its plan for rebuilding the New Zeeland town after the 2011 earthquake. It retains the existing city grid while limiting building heights, reducing car traffic and making the city greener, all based on a “social fabric fortified by catastrophe” and a diligent community engagement program thus rebuilding the urban fabric and the community.

Besides that the jury wishes to commend the following contributions for interesting concepts in different fields of sustainable architecture and planning:

For their contributions on slum upgrading in the developing world:

The Big Necessity by Anna Sundman, Sweden. For its prototype eco-toilet built in Fiji, solving multiple challenges and combining local customs and materials with modern techniques.

Model of slum upgrading in Kibera, Kenya by Kounkuey Design Initiative, USA. For its network of micro-interventions enhancing public space through participatory design processes.

For their examples of technological developments:

Innovative timber housing for rural Wales by Rob Thomas, Welsh school of architecture. For its development of a new construction system of wooden houses using fast-growing, second rate Sitka spruce.

Artis hq in Berlin by Roswag Architekten, Germany. For its consequent use of passive strategies and best practices to create a small industry building far better than contemporary requirements.

For their contributions on planning issues:

Bishang-Ang Mo Kio Park in Singapore by Atelier Dreiseitl, Germany. For its transformation of a concrete channel into an attractive park for community integration, giving both water supply and flood protection as well as recreational space in a dense city.

Växjö plan by Växjö municipality, Sweden. For its diligent use of public discussion of the sustainable development of a middle-sized town and for its creative implementation of new uses of a local material, wood.

The jury has given a certain priority to built projects, considering the well-known “implementation deficit” in sustainable building. The jury also would have liked to see more contributions on upgrading of housing estates from the 1960s and 1970s around the world, a highly pressing issue in the near future. Projects which propose sharing of resources in the form of co-housing would also have been welcome