Winners of the 2019 WAFX announced, ten projects for the future

Grimshaw Architects, New Wave Architecture Studio, Herzog & de Meuron, Maisam Architects & Engineers, ARUP, SOS - School of Sustainability, CAFASSO nv with B2Ai / EGM Architecten, Verform, Jasmax, Aravia Design & +FUN, STUDIO V Architecture,

Auckland, New Zealand, Moscow, Russia, Amsterdam, Dubai,


Prize, World Architecture Festival,

The World Architecture Festival (WAF) 2019 is just around the corner: the international event dedicated to the world of architecture will take place in Amsterdam on December 4 to 6. The ten winners of the WAFX section, dedicated to innovative projects and to the key challenges that architects will have to face in the future, were recently announced.

Winners of the 2019 WAFX announced, ten projects for the future

The SOS School of Sustainability, founded by architect Mario Cucinella, is one of the firms recognised with the WAFX Award 2019, a special section of the World Architecture Festival (WAF) supported by GreenCoat® and dedicated to future projects that have not yet been realised. Innovative projects, through which architects actively take on key ecological and social challenges brought on by the contemporary world, offering solutions that will be implemented in a 10 year timeframe. Ten winning projects were selected, one for each category included in the competition and focused on different themes, from climate change to energy savings and carbon emissions, waste and scarcity of water, the ageing population and health issues, reusable materials, smart cities, construction technology, cultural identity, ethics, power and justice. The ten winning projects of the 2019 edition will be on display at the World Architectural Festival, which will be held in Amsterdam from December 4 to 6. During the WAF awards gala dinner, set to take place on Friday, December 6 at the Beurs van Berlage in Denmark, the overall winner of the WAFX 2019 will also be announced, selected from the ten projects recognised in the different categories.

The SOS School of Sustainability won in the "Climate, Energy and Carbon" category with the MO(O)D project, a prototype of an office building to be built in Changzhou, China. Moving away from the construction tradition typically used for office buildings, the architects reserved 30% of the available space for workstations and meeting rooms, while the remaining 70% is for recreation areas. The project is the perfect synthesis between tradition and technology: modelled on the specific environmental and cultural situation and on the population’s needs, as well guided by the study of climatic histories, the search for innovative and sustainable materials and the future evolution of work spaces.

Architecture firms Herzog & de Meuron and APEX Project Bureau designed the redevelopment of the Badaevskiy Brewery, an old industrial area in Moscow. The old industrial area becomes an important and lively destination for the city centre, with residential buildings, offices, shops and new green spaces. The project won the WAFX award in the "Re-use" category.

The "X-Space" project designed by Verform, selected as the winner in the "Smart Cities" category, also focuses on urban regeneration. The architects envision a new "urban living room" for Dubai, developed along 1 km of the main Emirates highway, the Sheikh Zayed Road, with the aim of reducing car use to the advantage of cycle lanes, public transport and light vehicles. The design develops on two levels, each with different functions, but both focused on the Ghaf tree, a symbol of peace and stability.

The City Rail Link Ltd project, designed by Jasmax + Grimshaw won the "Cultural Identity" category. The project regards Auckland’s infrastructure transport network, in New Zealand and is an expression of the city's cultural identity, the largest urban centre in the world for the Māori and Polynesian population.

The winners of the other categories are:
"Building Technology" category, the Aravia Design & +FUN studios: Skypark Business Centre South in Luxembourg.
"Water and Food" category, the Arup studio: Ulsoor Lake in Bangalore, India.
"Power and Justice" category, the Cafasso nv with B2Ai / EGM Architecten studio: Haren Prison in Brussels, Belgium.
Ethics and Values” category, the Maisam Architects & Engineers studio: The School in a Park in Amman, Jordan.
"Water and Food" category, the Studio V Architecture studio: The Tanks at Bushwick Inlet Park in Brooklyn, USA.
"Ageing and Health" category, the New Wave Architecture Studio: Pars Medical and Health Centre in Bandar Abbas, Iran.

(Agnese Bifulco)

Images courtesy of Word Architecture Festival


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