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Spotlight: Geoffrey Bawa

Despite his late entry into architecture, Geoffrey Manning Bawa FRIBA, (July 23, 1919-May 27, 2003), explored modernism and its cultural implications, and created a unique, recognizable style of design which had a lasting impact on architects across the world. Well versed in Modernist theory, Bawa was one of the original proponents of Tropical Modernism, a design movement in which sensitivity for local context combines with form-making principles of modernism. Bawa’s architecture led to the formation of a new architectural identity and aesthetic for many tropical environments, and won him recognition and awards, including the Chairman’s Award of the Aga Kahn Special Chairman’s Award for Architecture (2001) and the title Deshamanya, in recognition by the government of Sri Lanka for his contributions to his country.

3 Projects Win 2015 Global Holcim Awards for Sustainability

Emerging from over 6,000 entries, three winners of the fourth Global Holcim Awards for Sustainable Construction have been selected. The international competition, occurring every three years, recognizes designs that provide sustainable solutions to local issues faced by communities throughout the world. This year's winning projects addressed sites in Colombia, Sri Lanka, and the United States and will receive monetary prizes ranging from $50,000 to $200,000.

The winning entries were selected from last year's top-prize recipients in the five regional Holcim Awards competitions, a total of 15 proposals (see our previous coverage here). An international jury of industry leaders, led by Mohsen Mostafavi (Dean of Harvard University's Graduate School of Design), determined the winners of the 2015 Global Holcim Awards.

See the winners after the break.

BRONZE: BIG U contains a protective ribbon: 21 km (13 mi) of flood protection tailored to each neighborhood and the community it serves. Image Courtesy of Holcim Foundation BRONZE: View of BIG U from The Battery in the financial district. Berms are strategically located to protect the infrastructure below and create a protective upland landscape. Image Courtesy of Holcim Foundation SILVER: The common lobby with its panoramic window. Image Courtesy of Holcim Foundation BRONZE: The undulating berm in East River Park will rise 15 feet to provide flood protection and connect coast and community. Image Courtesy of Holcim Foundation

Nisala Villa / Nath Rankothge & Associates

© Ajantha Ranaweera © Ajantha Ranaweera © Ajantha Ranaweera © Ajantha Ranaweera

Nugegoda House / Chinthaka Wickramage associates

  • Architects: Chinthaka Wickramage associates
  • Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka
  • Architect In Charge: Chinthaka Wickramage, Nileeka Senerath
  • Civil Contractor: Pasalka builders and decorators ltd.
  • Area: 220.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2014
  • Photographs: Eresh Weerasuriya

© Eresh Weerasuriya © Eresh Weerasuriya © Eresh Weerasuriya © Eresh Weerasuriya

House 1 / Isurunath Pramitha Associates

  • Architects: Isurunath Pramitha Associates
  • Location: Woodland Avenue, Sri Lanka
  • Architect In Charge: S.W. Isurunath Bulankulame
  • Area: 3600.0 ft2
  • Project Year: 2013
  • Photographs: Eresh Weerasuriya

© Eresh Weerasuriya © Eresh Weerasuriya © Eresh Weerasuriya © Eresh Weerasuriya

Milroy Perera Designs World's Tallest Residential Vertical Garden

Milroy Perera Associates, in collaboration with Mäga Engineering, has unveiled plans for the world's tallest residential vertical garden in Rajagiriya, Sri Lanka. The Clearpoint tower will house 164 apartments spread across 46 floors within 10 kkilometers from the centre of Columbo. Overlooking the tributaries of the Diyawanna Lake in Kotte, planted viewing terraces will encircle the entire structure fed by "inbuilt self-sustaining watering systems."

Remembering Bawa

In this article, originally published in Indian Architect & Builder, architect and writer David Robson pens an intimate and personal account of the life and work of Geoffrey Bawa – an incredible architect with an un-paralleled legacy in Sri Lanka and south-east India. 

Ten years have rolled by since Geoffrey Bawa’s death and fifteen since ill-health forced him to hang up his tee-square. It's time to take stock: what was his legacy? How were his ideas disseminated? What influence has he had? What were his qualities? Who was Geoffrey Bawa?

Ena de Silva House - Copy drawing by Vernon Nonis, 1985.. Image  Sitting at the Polontawala Bungalow.. Image  Lunuganga -Drawing. Image  Triton Hotel Entrance. Image

Krrish Square / Maison Edouard François

In the heart of Colombo, Sri Lanka, a lot surrounds a historic British-colonial building.  In this country, density is not limited and the program quickly takes on an exceptional scale. Designed by Maison Edouard François, the 450,000m² Heritage Building is planned for offices, apartments, a hotel, a cinema, and a commercial center.  As two spectacular bridges unite the three towers, the challenge becomes how to successfully create such a massive program adjacent to a historic monument.  More images and architects’ description after the break.

En-able – Paralytic Home Proposal / Triple O Studio

Designed by Triple O Studio, the basic premise they had for their design of the En-able – Paralytic Home was to keep in mind the every day activities of the differently-able and the specific nuances in the design of catering to their needs. Located in Sri Lanka, the architects wanted to create an environment that would bring about a feeling of community and help keep their spirits up. More images and architects' description after the break.

Colombo Mixed-Use Development / Safdie Architects

Courtesy of Safdie Architects
Courtesy of Safdie Architects

Safdie Architects was recently selected to design a new mixed-use development in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The 69-storey mixed-use project will be the first for Moshe Safdie in Sri Lanka, and is expected to be the tallest residential building in Colombo when it is completed. The design includes expansive family and community space amenities such as community gardens, shared outdoor spaces within the upper levels of the building, and individual roof gardens or terraces for every residence, a hallmark of Safdie’s design philosophy to provide access to outdoor spaces in high density urban housing. More images and architects’ description after the break.

BHC Colombo / Richard Murphy Architects

  • Architects: Richard Murphy Architects
  • Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka
  • Project Director: Richard Murphy
  • Project Architect: Matt Bremner
  • Architectural Assistant: Tim Bayman
  • Executive Architects: Milroy Perera Associates
  • Project Manager: Edmond Shipway
  • Structural Engineers: SKM Anthony Hunts
  • M+E Engineers: Fulcrum Consulting
  • Landscape Architects: Gross Max
  • Lighting Designers: Speirs and Major Associates
  • Client: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office
  • Contractor: Gibs Ltd.
  • Budget: Euro $7.5 M
  • Area: 3400.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2009
  • Photographs: David Morris © Richard Murphy Architects

© David Morris © Richard Murphy Architects © David Morris © Richard Murphy Architects © David Morris © Richard Murphy Architects © David Morris © Richard Murphy Architects