Worldwide Architectural Achievements
Earlier this month the fourth World Architecture Festival (WAF) took place in Barcelona. The event has been dubbed “the world’s largest, interactive architectural event,” and more than 1,300 took part this year. In addition to the program of seminars and keynotes, the event also included an exhibition of more than 700 architectural projects entered into the WAF Awards 2011. Shortlisted projects present their ideas live in front of a panel of acclaimed judges
and attendees and the best in each category wins a WAF Award. On the final day of WAF, category winners compete in front of a “Super Jury,” this year led by Michael Sorkin, principal of Michael Sorkin Studio in New York, which names one project the overall World Building of the Year 2011.
This year the top honor went to Media-TIC in Barcelona, designed by Cloud 9 based in Spain. The project was commissioned by The Consortium of the Zona Franca CZFB and @22Barcelona, an experimental district in the city.
And a bit closer to home in the States, 8 Spruce Street – Beekman Tower in
New York, designed by Frank Gehry, won the Structural Project of the Year 2011 award. This 76-story mixed-use tower “redefines the skyline of Downtown Manhattan with its undulating, asymmetrical steel curtainwall
comprised of steel and glass that crinkles to replicate folds in a piece of fabric and gives the building a sense of movement.”
As the jury commended “The Beekman Tower is a landmark project as it is the first significant high-rise building to be built in New York post 9/11. Considerable structural challenges were overcome by the construction team to deliver a tower which includes residential, school and hospital facilities. Coupling Frank Gehry’s visionary design with cutting-edge engineering, it stands as an excellent example of world-class architecture.”
Have you seen or been involved with any projects that have taken architecture to new levels? Be sure and let us know about them!