The recent Corobrik-SAIA Awards celebrated architectural excellence at a gala dinner on 1 August.
On 1 August, local architectural talent was acknowledged for their project designs and ideas at the 2013/14 Corobrik-SAIA Awards of Excellence and Merit at a gala dinner at the ICC Durban. The award ceremony represents one of the highest accolades that can be awarded to a South African building and it is presented by Corobrik and the South African Institute for Architects (SAIA).
The awards dinner was attended by 220 people including dignitaries from the Department of Public Works (DPW), eThekwini Municipality and other government departments within the built environment, executives from related voluntary associations, the registrar of the South African Council for the Architectural Profession (SACAP), board members, regional secretaries and members of SAIA, Corobrik executives, UIA office bearers, members of the media, and heads of schools of architecture nationally.
SAIA president, Sindile Ngonyama, said the majority of the projects submitted by the members were of an exceptionally high standard.
“Several office bearers from the International Union of Architects, who are currently in Durban for their world congress, attended our awards evening. It was apparent that they supported the adjudicating panel’s view that the winning projects were on a par with outstanding architectural design globally,” commented Ngonyama.
A total of 49 entries from eight SAIA regions were received and eight awards of excellence, 14 awards of merit and two special commendations were bestowed on the architects responsible for 24 projects that were selected from the submissions. The highest tribute of the night is the Corobrik-SAIA award for excellence, which has been presented every two years since its introduction in 1990. In 1999, the awards of merit were introduced and this award acknowledges good design or a significant architectural achievement.
The awards cycle begins with awards for architecture presented by SAIA regional institutes in the first year, followed by the Corobrik-SAIA Awards of Merit and Excellence in the second year. The 2013/2014 winning projects ranged from residential units and public buildings to the restoration of heritage sites and an academic research project.
“This year’s successful submissions talked not only to materiality, programmatic requirements, the employment of resources and the application of socio-cultural debates, but also engaged and articulated the day-to-day intellectual and topical discourse of our ever-changing biophysical environment,” Ngonyama said.
The adjudicating panel convened for an intense two-day judging session and then visited 25 shortlisted projects in person before finalising their assessments. “The decision to visit the shortlisted projects gave the adjudicators the opportunity to engage seriously as individuals with different outlooks on architectural trajectory and background, and also with the projects and their authors,” Ngonyama said.
The two projects which received special commendations were Rank No.2, Diepsloot, Johannesburg, by 26′ 10 South Architects and House Gauché in Silver Lakes Golf Estate, which was designed by Earthworld Architects CC. The projects were deemed to have not quite met the set criteria, but had demonstrated certain qualities that were worthy of ongoing architectural debate as the profession moves forward.
Peter Kidger of Corobrik said the company is delighted to honour these fine examples of great, recent architecture in this country. He said local architects face exciting challenges by virtue of South Africa’s varying typography and climate, often limited budgets and an evolving multicultural society where public architecture is required to be engaging, transformative and inclusive.
“Architects are also faced with the significant design and specification considerations surrounding climate change, ensuring that we use non-renewable resources more effectively and tread with greater circumspection on our planet. Each of the winning projects has successfully addressed these challenges,” says Kidger.
“Corobrik salutes the architects whose work has been acclaimed this year, not only for the architectural merit of their buildings, but also for conceiving architecture with the propensity to delight,” concludes Kidger.
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Awards of Merit
1. Auditorium for the School of Agriculture, Alice Campus, University of Fort Hare, Eastern Cape: Ngonyama Okpanum & Associates (Pty) Ltd.
2. Helenvale multi-purpose community centre, Port Elizabeth: The Matrix…CC Urban Designers and Architects.
3. Walmer Link Social Housing Development, Port Elizabeth: Erik Voight Architects.
4. Weekend Hide, Rosendal, Free State: Carmen Dickens Architect.
5. UFS Department of Architecture, Free State: Typology Architects CC.
6. Studio home, Brixton, Johannesburg: 26’10 south Architects.
7. ‘African Identity in Post-Apartheid Public Architecture – White Skin, Black Masks’: citation for research dissertation by Professor Jonathan Noble.
8. House ‘Kleine Schuur’, Parktown, Johannesburg:, Office 24/7.
9. SEED Library, Alexandra, Gauteng: Architects of Justice.
10. Hopewell Visitors’ Centre near Port Elizabeth: Richard Stretton cc T/A Koop Design.
11. New Architecture wing, Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria: Crafford & Crafford Argitekte.
12. Ten on Lane, Polokwane: studioMAS Architects & Urban Designers.
13. Wits Art Museum, Johannesburg: Cohen & Garson, Architects.
14. Dunkirk Beach Club House, KwaZulu-Natal: Designworkshop: SA, Architects.
Awards of Excellence
1. UNISA Phase 2, Cape Town:MSa Michele Sandilands Architects.
2. New additions to St Cyprian’s Girls School, Cape Town: Noero Wolff Architects.
3. Babylonstoren between Klapmuts and Simondium, Western Cape: Malherbe Rust Architects CC.
4. HAPO Freedom Park Museum, Tshwane: Office of Collaborative Architects (GAPP Architects and Urban Designers, Mashabane Rose + Associates and MMA Architects CC).
5. Springfield Convent School pre-school campus, Cape Town: CCNI Architetcs.
6. Dunkirk All Suites Hotel, KwaZulu-Natal: Designworkshop: SA, Architects.
7. House Kleynhans, Marble Hall, Pretoria: Thomas Gouws Architects & Interiors.
8. House Snyders, Blair Athol Estate, Johannesburg: W Design Architecture Studio CC.