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Top sustainable construction projects focus on local context and enhancing communities

The winning projects of the Holcim Awards 2014 Asia Pacific show how building with sustainable construction in mind can enhance the region’s human, natural and economic performance. A bird sanctuary in Thailand, a locally-adapted orphanage in Nepal, and a community library in Sri Lanka received the top prizes.

An independent jury led by Rahul Mehrotra (India) selected the winners using the “target issues” for sustainable construction that include the “triple bottom line” of environmental, social and economic performance, and also recognize the need for architectural excellence and a high degree of transferability. 13 projects to be implemented in nine countries in the Asia Pacific region were recognized with a total of USD 330,000 prize money.

Gold to a bird sanctuary in Thailand

A14APgoTH-09.jpgA bird sanctuary in northern Thailand that serves as both an educational facility and bird rehabilitation center won the Gold prize. The integrated approach to bird conservation by Jariyawadee Lekawatana of Achitectkidd and Singh Intrachooto of Kasetsart University in Bangkok, together with Chak Cherdsatirkul of Kaomai Lanna Resort, Chiang Mai, simulates the natural habitat and includes a small hotel and bird viewing tower. Palm fiber discarded from agricultural production is re-valued as a construction material for the building envelope which provides additional habitat and food sources for all birds in the area.

At the prize-giving ceremony in Jakarta, jury member Donald Bates (Australia) congratulated the Holcim Awards Gold winners for their innovative approach to addressing the devastating effects of bird trafficking on the survival of endangered wildlife. “The project’s stance is aligned with the principles advocated by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and combines architectural qualities with conservation, education, research and eco-tourism in a complete and convincing way,” he said.

Locally-adapted orphanage in Nepal takes Silver

The Lali Gurans orphanage and library in Kathmandu, Nepal by Hilary Sample and Michael Meredith of MOS Architects in New York, USA won Silver. The project addresses the needs of an under-served rural population with a facility that uses low-technology renewable energy and material resources, thus significantly reducing operating costs. Vertical gardens and permaculture provide thermal insulation as well as food for cooking. The project addresses the isolation of the orphanage as an institution by integrating the needs of the nearby communities through a library accessible to the public and a seismically-stable refuge area.

Bronze for community recuperation project in Sri Lanka

A project in the rural town of Ambepussa by Milinda Pathiraja of Robust Architecture Workshop in Colombo, Sri Lanka was awarded Bronze. The project aims to re-integrate former soldiers into post-civil-war society by providing training in building techniques through the construction of a community library. The slender building sits lightly in the landscape and wraps around an inner courtyard, taking full advantage of cross ventilation and daylight use, rammed-earth walls and recycled materials reduce the building’s ecological footprint.

Five Acknowledgement prizes for responsive approaches

Madhusudhan Rao Chalasani of MADE, Indiareceived one of the five equally-ranked Acknowledgement prizes for a community medical center and school in Tatiba Baraibura, Jharkhand, India that combines local materials and traditional craftsmanship with modern technology to create a simple yet sophisticated building. Benoît Jacquet of École française d'Extrême-Orient and Manuel Tardits of Mikan, Japan were acknowledged for a sustainable research center in Kyoto, Japan that uses advanced technological features as well as time-honored Japanese woodworking methods to allow rapid construction.

A further Acknowledgement prize went to a plan incorporating stakeholder participation for urban upgrading in Jakarta, Indonesia by Tomohiko Amemiya of UNITYDESIGN in Japan and a team from Universitas Indonesia that uses a two-step micro intervention to upgrade informal settlements in megacities. Two further recipients of Acknowledgement prizes were a response by Maj Plemenitas of LINKscale in the UK to the imminent threat of coastal erosion due to rising waters by using palm tree branches for the coastal protection of Tarawa Atoll, Kiribati; and an urban water transport system in Bangkok, Thailand by Santi Sombatwichatorn of D I Designs, Thailand that proposes to revive the ancient canals of the city to create a modern network of waterways and supplement the existing Metropolitan Rapid Transit systems.

Five “Next Generation” prizes for students and young professionals

A14APng1CN-06.jpgThe Holcim Awards competition also seeks bold ideas for tomorrow in the “Next Generation” category for participants up to 30 years of age. The “Next Generation” 1st prize went to Harvard Graduate School of Design student Zhe Peng for the historic village reconstruction of Xueshan, China. The design proposes a post-earthquake reconstruction of a historic village in Sichuan Province that focuses on the unique local characteristics of the site, bamboo as the main building material and revives traditional construction techniques.

Nusrat Jahan Mim from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology won 2nd prize for a modular housing plan for urban poor in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The 3rd prize went to Antonius Richard Rusli from Universitas Katolik Parahyangan, Indonesia for an urban neighborhood remediation plan of Bandung, Indonesia. Eugene Tan from National University of Singapore won 4th prize for an urban network upgrading concept in Tangerang, Indonesia, and the 5th prize was presented to Meriem Chabani, Etienne Chobaux, and John Edom from École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture Paris Malaquais, France for an intervention plan for the Chittagong garment district in Bangladesh.

Holcim Awards submissions for projects in Asia Pacific were evaluated by an independent jury hosted by the Tsinghua University in Beijingand included Rahul Mehrotra (head of jury, India), Marc Angélil (Switzerland), Donald Bates (Australia), Momoyo Kaijima (Japan), Forrest Meggers (Singapore), Geeta Mehta (USA), Ian Riley (China), Stephen Siu-Yu Lau (Hong Kong/China), Brinda Somaya (India), Davy Sukamta (Indonesia), and Yue Zhang (China).

The Holcim Awards ceremony in Jakarta for the competition region Asia Pacific concludes a series of five events following Moscow for Europe, Toronto for North America, Medellín for Latin America, and Beirut for Africa Middle East. The projects that received Holcim Awards Gold, Silver and Bronze in each region automatically qualify for the Global Holcim Awards 2015.

The Holcim Awards for Sustainable Construction competition seeks innovative, future-oriented and tangible construction projects to promote sustainable responses to the technological, environmental, socioeconomic and cultural issues affecting building and construction on a local, regional and global level. The competition has been run by the Swiss-based Holcim Foundation since 2004 and offers USD 2 million in prize money per three-year cycle.

The Holcim Foundation is supported by Holcim Ltd and its Group companies in around 70 countries and is independent of its commercial interests. Holcim is one of the world’s leading suppliers of cement and aggregates (crushed stone, gravel and sand) as well as further activities such as ready-mix concrete and asphalt including services.

Holcim Awards 2014 prize-winning projects, Asia Pacific

Main category

Holcim Awards Gold 2014 – USD 100,000
Protective Wing: Bird sanctuary, Chiang Mai, Thailand
Main authors: Jariyawadee Lekawatana, Architectkidd, Bangkok, Thailand; Singh Intrachooto, Kasetsart University, Bangkok, Thailand; Chak Cherdsatirkul, Kaomai Lanna Resort, Chiang Mai, Thailand
Further authors: Felix Baroux, École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture et de Paysage de Bordeaux, France; Pacharapan Ratananakorn, Pratchaya Lertrucksadee, Nattapong Chumkesorn, Tamfun Vatayanon, and Sorawut Kittibanthorn, Architectkidd, Bangkok, Thailand

Holcim Awards Silver 2014 – USD 50,000
Children’s Ziggurat: Locally-adapted orphanage and library, Kathmandu, Nepal
Main authors: Hilary Sample and Michael Meredith, MOS Architects, New York, NY, USA

Holcim Awards Bronze 2014 – USD 30,000
Post-War Collective: Community library and social recuperation, Ambepussa, Sri Lanka
Main author: Milinda Pathiraja, Robust Architecture Workshop, Colombo, Sri Lanka
Further author: Ganga Ratnayake, Robust Architecture Workshop, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Holcim Awards Acknowledgement prizes 2014 – each USD 17,000

Between Walls: Community medical center and school, Tatiba Baraibura, Jharkhand, India
Main author: Madhusudhan Rao Chalasani, MADE, Hyderabad, India
Further authors: Mario Galiana Liras, Santosh Kumar Ketham, Sai Kumar GV, Bharat Kumar T, and Vamsi Kundanam, MADE, Hyderabad, India

High-Tech Low-Tech: Sustainable research center featuring traditional woodworking methods, Kyoto, Japan
Main authors: Benoît Jacquet, École française d'Extrême-Orient, Kyoto, Japan; Manuel Tardits, Mikan, Yokohama, Japan
Further authors: Kiwako Kamo, Masashi Sogabe, and Masayoshi Takeuchi, Mikan, Yokohama, Japan

In-Situ Network: Palm tree branches for coastal protection, Tarawa Atoll, Kiribati
Main author: Maj Plemenitas, LINKscale, London, United Kingdom
Further author: Ana Abram, Amphibious Lab, London, United Kingdom

Megacity Skeleton: Stakeholder participation for urban up-grading, Jakarta, Indonesia
Main author: Tomohiko Amemiya, UNITYDESIGN, Tokyo, Japan
Further authors: Akiko Okabe, Yuki Yoshikata, Kazuki Ueda, and Genta Sawai, Chiba University, Japan; Evawani Ellisa, Achmad Hery Fuad, Joko Adianto, Mikhael Johanes, and Meidesta Pitria, Universitas Indonesia, Jakarta, Indonesia

Resurrected Canals: Urban water transport system, Bangkok, Thailand
Main author: Santi Sombatwichatorn, D I Designs, Bangkok, Thailand
Further authors: Pongporn Sudbanthad, Tanasarn Kowsoui, Chanikarn Opaspimoltum, and Sethawat Srivirote, D I Designs, Bangkok, Thailand

“Next Generation” prizes

Holcim Awards “Next Generation” 1st prize 2014 – USD 25,000
Panda-Watching: Historic village reconstruction, Xueshan, China
Main author: Zhe Peng, Harvard Graduate School of Design, Cambridge, MA, USA
Further authors: Zhenru Zhou, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, USA; Zhang Qu, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China

Holcim Awards “Next Generation” 2nd prize 2014 – USD 15,000
Adaptable Portable: Modular housing for urban poor, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Author: Nusrat Jahan Mim, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, Dhaka, Bangladesh

Holcim Awards “Next Generation” 3rd prize 2014 – USD 10,000
Social Design: Urban neighborhood remediation, Bandung, Indonesia
Main author: Antonius Richard Rusli, Universitas Katolik Parahyangan, Bandung, Indonesia
Further authors: Kenneth Soewarto, Raymond San, Steve Soesanto, and Raynaldo Theodore, Universitas Katolik Parahyangan, Bandung, Indonesia

Holcim Awards “Next Generation” 4th prize 2014 – USD 7,500
Formal-Informal DNA: Urban network upgrading, Tangerang, Indonesia
Author: Eugene Tan, National University of Singapore, Singapore

Holcim Awards “Next Generation” 5th prize 2014 – USD 7,500
Re-Made Fabric: Garment district intervention, Chittagong, Bangladesh
Authors: Meriem Chabani, Etienne Chobaux, and John Edom, École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture Paris Malaquais, Paris, France

Last Updated: November 13, 2014
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